Building Strong Families and Communities Through Literacy
Brampton - How do you practice your literacy skills? For many of us, the word literacy simply means reading, but it's so much more. Your literacy skills help you write your grocery list, play a card or board game, or even count the cars ahead of you. It is part of the things you do every day.
January 27, 2008 marks the 10th annual Family Literacy Day, a national initiative that promotes the importance of reading and learning together as a family.
In celebration of Family Literacy Day, children's authors Gord Brennan and Dirk McLean will join the Mississauga Literacy Committee at the Meadowvale Branch Library on Saturday, Jan. 26. The Erin Meadows Library is hosting a "Make Your Own Memory Game" workshop on Jan. 26; and on Sunday, Jan. 27, the Albion Bolton Library in Caledon invites guests to have fun while "Creating Your Own Book."
"Literacy involves lifelong learning that begins at home," said Councillor Patricia Mullin, Chair of the Region's Human Services Committee. "Research shows that reading to children at least once a day has a substantial impact on their future academic success."
The Peel District School Board's 2004 Peel Reading Attitudes Survey, completed by nearly 60,000 students in Grades 4 through 10, found that when asked about family involvement, only nine per cent claimed to regularly read aloud to family members and only three per cent said their parents or guardians read to them.
"Basic literacy skills are essential to a person's success in school, the workforce and personal lives," said Councillor Mullin. "Our Regional Council is committed to ensuring Peel's residents have access to the programs they need to help them develop these essential skills."
The Region of Peel's Family Fun Night workshops offer fun, family-focused activities that provide parents with practical tools to help their child learn early reading and writing skills. Offered free of charge at over 70 schools and other locations across Peel, the Family Fun Night workshops are a series of 12 activity-based seminars taught by early childhood educators, teachers and other specially-trained community professionals.
Lorna Reid, Director of Early Years Integration for the Region of Peel said that interest in the Family Fun Night workshops has steadily increased since they were introduced in 2003: "The number of sites and volunteers has more than tripled since 2003, and the list continues to grow."
For more information on Family Literacy Day activities in your neighbourhood, visit the Happening in Peel calendar at www.peelregion .ca or call your local library.
For more information on the Region of Peel or to register for an upcoming Family Fun Night session, please call 905-791-7800 or visit www.peelregion.ca.
The Human Services department, established in June 2007, provides services that support full participation by all residents in the economic, social and cultural life of the Region, in particular by providing a continuum of supports for vulnerable or at-risk members of the community. The department's divisions include Ontario Works, Children's Services, Early Years Integration, Social Housing (Peel Living), and Social Housing Policy and Programs.