I grew up in a house of readers. My whole family would be seated in the living room together, but reading independently. My parents read to me and provided me with wonderful books that filled my room. One of my favourite places to visit was our tiny local library which had a basket filled with Beatrix Potter books.
As a teenager, I continued to travel to new places and experience new things through literature. Books opened up a whole world that was new and exciting. I loved acquiring new knowledge and following characters through their many adventures.
When I began working with children, and then became a teacher, one of my priorities was passing on stories and opening up the world to students through books. The greatest joy in my career has been sharing a love of reading. Watching a child be excited to turn the page, learn a new word or discover something far outside of their experiences has been a privilege to witness.
When I was pregnant, I began purchasing every book that I wanted to share with my children. From childhood favorites to classic Canadian literature, I took every opportunity to build a library for my three children. I read to them every night after their baths and watched as they began to love books too.
Reading with children offers so many advantages. It helps with early language development, builds vocabulary and helps them learn about their world. Children can connect to the different characters and their experiences. They also learn early reading skills like which direction to turn pages and that the squiggly things on a page are words that tell a story. Reading to children helps them get excited about reading and interested in becoming readers.
At the Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy (CBAL), we like to foster the love of reading by giving out books at our programs and events. We want children to be the best readers they can be! Our Reach a Reader – Books for Kids campaign raises funds to help children in our CBAL communities to have access to quality books and programs that support reading and early literacy skills. Reading is one of the most fundamental skills needed to be successful in life!
You can help us to reach a reader by contributing to Books for Kids. It’s easy. You can donate online at cbal.org or you can contact your local community literacy coordinator.
Community Literacy Coordinator
Columbia Basin Alliance for Literacy - Castlegar