Clayton Early Learning
6Mar/13Off

I Love to Read Month at Educare Denver

claytonearlylearning

February marked Educare Denver at Clayton Early Learning’s third annual participation in “I Love to Read” month.  During the month, a committee of Child and Family Educators and teachers partner together to carefully plan for the event by creating several eye appealing and comfortable areas throughout the Educare building.  These reading nooks encourage and entice young children and their families to sit together and read from Clayton’s tremendous selection of developmentally appropriate and interesting books.  At our school, we find value in creating a special time for families and children to sit together and share the excitement a good book can bring, but more than that, we know that the bonding and connection between parent and child during those special moments is equally important.

I Love to Read bookEach year this dedicated committee plans a month-long calendar of events to provide several rich opportunities for families and children around reading books.  This year, we offered two days of dialogic reading training for families in both English and Spanish.  According to Grover J. (Russ) Whitehurst, Ph.D, “Dialogic reading is just children and adults having a conversation about a book” .  In our school, teachers have been trained to use this technique with children in the classroom.  They document children’s comments and questions as well as make note of unusual words that they then incorporate into their daily conversations with children.  Whitehurst also asserts, “Dialogic reading works. Children who have been read to dialogically are substantially ahead of children who have been read to traditionally on tests of language development.  Children can jump ahead by several months in just a few weeks of dialogic reading.”

I love to read Apple next to kids reading table at Clayton EducareShauna Scott, Mentor Coach Child and Family Educator is one of the “I love to Read” committee members.  She is passionate about reading and the benefits of children and families doing this activity together.  “I love to Read month for me is a great way to instill a love of reading.  We might look at dialogic reading and think it is so complex, but it’s not.  [Families] are already doing it.  It’s such a great way for parents and children to feel valued.  Parents can take a trip down memory lane and recall what they loved about reading and remember the books they loved as a child.”

I love to read Apple at Clayton EducareAs families read or use dialogic reading, they are encouraged to document the books they have explored with children to be displayed in the Atrium of our Educare building.  This year the theme used for the display is a giant apple, which is home to a big green book worm.  Little apples documenting the book read and the child’s name are attached to the giant apple display.  Last year by the end of February, more than 1000 books had been read!  Staff and families were encouraged to guess the total number of books read, and the closest to the actual number received a gift card.  This year, we will accept documentation of the books read through the end of the day Thursday, February 28, 2013. Another drawing will be announced for those who guess the total amount of books read.

I love to read Apple at end of February!February and “I Love to Read” month is a fantastic opportunity for us to highlight the work we do with children all year long.  Every day teachers spend time reading to children during classroom time.  Full-day Head Start Teacher, Vivian Sandoval believes reading is an excellent way to make a “real” connection with children.  “Reading is great for children because regardless of what situation they may be in they can escape with a book to go anywhere they want to go.”  Part-day Head Start classroom Teacher, Megan Bock appreciates the value of “I Love to Read” month as well.  “I like I Love to Read month because it accentuates the importance of families and children reading together.”

Please take a few minutes to sit with a child and help them to explore the wonderful world of books.  This simple act has long-lasting and profound benefits to the children in our lives.  Together, we can make the love of reading last throughout the year!

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  1. I am so happy you are encouraging families to read together! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!
    Cherie Baillie


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