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Celebrating the Caregivers

It’s National Family Literacy Month and we’re celebrating the caregivers. A child’s “important adults” are crucial to whether they develop a love of learning and reading, cultivate their curiosity, and feel safe enough to learn and progress in school. 

Important adults can be almost anyone! Most often it’s parents, but grandparents, aunties, uncles, older siblings, cousins, godparents, trusted neighbors, and many more, can also fit this role. A love of reading instilled early can last a lifetime and has benefits far beyond the family – and any one of us can help do this for a child.

So how can you celebrate and promote family literacy? Find some ideas below.

1. Make books easy to access.

Start a tradition of gifting books to children in your life every November – and maybe more often! Donate gently used and outgrown books to a Little Free Library near you; support a book drive in your local community (or even start one!); see if a family you love is eligible for free books from Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library or Read Conmigo.

2. Prioritize and model reading.

If you have young children in your close family, set aside regular time for reading aloud with them. If you’re not a parent, see if this could become a cherished tradition for young nieces, nephews, cousins, or family friends – maybe you could establish a regular time to read to kids in your family and give their regular caregivers a break!

And make sure kids see you reading – books, not your phone…

3. Make reading special.

Do you have space to create a book nook? Even a small corner can be dressed up with a beanbag chair, a fluffy rug, and a small shelf. Maybe add a lamp or a string of lights to make it cozy and fun!

Set aside time for reading aloud – even if you only have a short amount of time – and when kids are old enough, set aside time for quiet reading on their own in a comfy space.

4. Make regular visits to your local library.

Find your local library and visit it OFTEN! Libraries have so much more than books (though of course the books are amazing) – many have reading kits, with toys and crafts that accompany books, and most have fabulous activity calendars. 

“When I got my library card, that was when my life began.”
Rita Mae Brown

However you choose to do it, may November be a month of reading celebration for you and your family!

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