East End Primary School family literacy night was a reading success.
More than 60 youngsters along with their parents, grandparents, guardians and friends turned out for the pilot literacy programme in the school hall Wednesday, 30 January.
“It was good, so very good, I enjoyed every minute of it,” said parent Janice Welcome. “I only wish they could do it more often because I learned so much from last night. I had four children with me, my son De Andre, nieces Sheica, Latoya and Annissa. A bit more than I could have handled, but I really enjoyed the time with them.”
Ms Welcome said the literacy night also gave her more knowledge of how to assist her child with schoolwork at home.
“What was really exciting was the children wanting to carry on the reading exercise when we got home,” she said. “Too tired to go another round, I promise them we would continue the lessons tonight.”
The evening was designed to promote a strong school and parent involvement programme, to empower parents to help their children become more successful readers, and to encourage the further development of decoding and reading comprehension skills. All that was required from students was to bring a family member to be their learning partner.
“We are hoping to make it a monthly session in both math and literacy,” said Allison Wallace, principal of East End Primary School. “Last night history was made in East End for the time since I have been teaching there. I was delighted with the way parents spent time with the children. The objective of the whole exercise was achieved. Our vision is for it to continue to grow stronger and give students the guidance they need to become a success in life.”
The interactive workshop involved reading, phonics and word solving strategies geared toward infants, as well as older children.
Each session gave parents information regarding the strategy. By watching teachers, parents and students practiced the strategy together. Parents also got to take home a support guide so they could practice at home.
“Reading aloud to children is widely recognised as the single most important activity leading to literacy acquisition,” said Jessica Jackson, a literacy coordinator. “The sessions focused on helping parents create effective read aloud environments and opportunities for their child.”
Educators also gave parents guidelines to select “just the right book”, not too hard but not too easy.