Reading with children is a special gift that will help them throughout their lives. Time spent reading together, from even the earliest age, can be a powerful bonding experience as well as demonstrate the importance of stories and learning to a child. Now through March 5, families from Parachute to Basalt are encouraged to make special time to read together.
Read With Me Week (Feb. 27 to March 5) promotes early childhood literacy in our valley. Families with children ages 1 to 5 years are encouraged to pick up a special tracking form at the libraries and join in the fun. Children can color in a portion of the tracking form for every family reading session. At the end of the week, families can turn in their forms to the libraries for a chance at great prizes, including books and gift certificates to local retailers and area attractions. Families are also encouraged to take advantage of storytimes at the libraries and other literacy resources already present in our valley.
"We know that early literacy skills are highly correlated with future success in school and in life," noted Rick Blauvelt, Executive Director of the local Raising A Reader program. Carol Federman, Regional Coordinator for Reach Out and Read added: "Parents are every child's first and most important teacher. Reading to a child is the single most effective tool for the development of that child's language and literacy skills."
Many children and parents have discovered the value of Read With Me Week. With over 400 participants and 7,500 books read thus far, this program hopes to carry past successes into 2013. Participation is free, and enjoyment can be expected.
Read With Me Week was created by a collaborative network of community organizations including Raising A Reader Aspen to Parachute, Reach Out and Read Colorado, Garfield County Department of Human Services Childcare Program, Basalt Regional Library, Early Childhood Network, Betsy's Barefoot Books, and the Garfield County Libraries. This is the third year of the program.
For read-aloud tracking forms, a full schedule of events or more information stop by your local Garfield County Library, call Raising A Reader (970-230-9117), or visit www.reachoutandreadco.org or www.earlylearningfund.org.