Children’s language and literacy development continues to be supported at Northern Bay
Northern Bay site partners and local organisations have worked together to deliver many initiatives across Term 2 that are aligned to the sitewide priority of supporting children’s language and literacy development.
Children’s language and literacy development initiatives at Northern Bay
Free and weekly Storytime sessions have been delivered on site for a number of years. These sessions provide families with the opportunity to attend a welcoming and supportive environment with their children whilst engaging with guest readers from local organisations.
The appetite for Storytime sessions once COVID restrictions allowed for a return on site in Term 1 led to the site arranging a COVID safe Storytime session held outdoors, referred to as Story Walk. The success of the first Story Walk created a demand for ongoing Story Walk sessions, and to accommodate this, the site has now committed to running a Story Walk each term.
The recent Story Walk held in Term 2, themed ‘Dinosaurs Love Underpants’, was another success and could not have happened without the guest readers from Northern Bay College, Korayn Birralee Family Centre, Bethany, BestStart and Corio Library.
Supporting families to access free books and increase their home collections is another way the site is supporting children’s language and literacy development. The ongoing partnership with the organisation 123Read2Me has allowed the site to receive over 30 boxes of both new and pre-loved children’s books. These books are now being distributed to children and families through the on site Maternal & Child Health service, playgroups, long day care and kindergarten, and at events across the site.
Aligning with the sitewide strategic plan and working collaboratively with Our Place, the Korayn Birralee Family Centre has also allocated some of its School Readiness Funding this year to purchase programs such as The Dolly Parton Imagination Library and Cued Articulation training. All of which are aimed at further supporting the development of children’s language skills.
Additional benefits for families attending Storytime and Story Walk sessions
Attending children’s literacy events and sessions has also resulted in several benefits for parents and carers that are additional to supporting their children’s language and literacy development.
Parents and carers who regularly participate in Storytime sessions with their children have gained a greater level of comfortability and confidence in their interactions across the site. As Storytime sessions are held before playgroup, this has also supported parents and carers to become aware of and access the playgroup. Due to an increase in playgroup attendance, the site has arranged to deliver a second playgroup in Term 3 to accommodate more families.
Through these fun and soft entry activities, families are also experiencing increased familiarity, interest, and engagement in what is happening on site. Parents and carers have also had an opportunity to learn about on site adult engagement activities such as Conversational English classes and coffee and chat sessions which has also led to an increase in attendance and engagement.
Aligning with the Our Place Approach
This is one example of the Our Place evidence-based element of High-quality Early Learning, Health and Development in action. To learn more about this element or our other evidence-based elements Click Here