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The bar of awareness for literacy on Prince Edward Island was raised a little bit higher this weekend.

Two-year-old Sarah Rulhadi finds a good book to read at the P.E.I. Literacy Alliance Family Literacy Day celebrations on Saturday.

The bar of awareness for literacy on Prince Edward Island was raised a little bit higher this weekend.

Hundreds went through the Confederation Centre of the Arts gallery on Saturday for the 14th annual Family Literacy Day celebration hosted by the P.E.I. Literacy Alliance.

Amanda Beazley, program coordinator with the alliance, said the P.E.I. celebration occurs every year on the weekend closest to the actual day, which is celebrated nationally on Jan. 27.

With alarming low rates of literacy in P.E.I., Beazley said the day aims to promote “learning together as a family.”

Part of the day was also meant to show that reading books isn’t the only way to promote literacy, she said.

“There’s so many different little games you can play. ‘I spy’ with letters on signs, even teaching children their live and what their address is, that’s literacy too,” said Beazley. “It’s the sharing of knowledge through recipes, singing, dancing, creating puppets and doing a puppet show together or just having a good chat together at a mealtime promotes everybody’s learning.”

Saturday saw performances from Mike Pendergast “the Music Man”, a puppet show presented by the P.E.I. Public Library Service, as well as activity booths, face painting, a scavenger hunt and art table.

A reading tent also provided a quiet place where parents and children could take a breather and relax.

Dwitya Rulhadi and her daughters Rim, 5, and Sarah, 2, were just a few of many who found a good book to read in the tent.

Rulhadi said she felt it was important to introduce her daughters to reading more books.

“Because they can see the world through the books,” she said.

Beazley said the celebration has grown every year and also gave a tip to parents for when they left.

“If you make reading and learning fun kids will stay engaged,” she said. “And if you’re engaged as a family the learning will be lifelong.”

Organizations: Confederation Centre, P.E.I. Literacy Alliance, P.E.I. Public Library Service

Geographic location: Prince Edward Island

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  • Leveledreader
    January 27, 2014 - 06:18

    I have had the privledge of working with children as an educational assistant. I worked with one child in particular who struggled greatly with reading and comprehension. The child was in Grade 6 and was expected to read at a grade 6 level or higher. As I began working with the child, I determined that they were reading and comprehending at a grade 1-2 level. In my opinion, you teach at where the child is and support them in getting to where they should be or to their personal best. My heart broke for this child who referred to themselves as stupid because they couldn't keep up with the expectations from their teacher. This was just one child -there were many other children in the same boat. Teach a child in such a way that they can learn.

  • What really works
    January 26, 2014 - 21:07

    While all the suggestions in the article are good, they will mostly help a child feel positive about reading and literacy. If your child is struggling , get to the library (or check online ) for a good phonics program. Make up "sight words" flash cards and play games with them. (Google "sight words" for a list of the most common ones for beginning reading.) A good workbook series is "Explode the Code", available at bookstores or online. You will have to put in time with your child to get results, don't count on the school or teachers, it's up to you. It can be done. I went through this with two of my children, they struggled with reading in the early grades. With time spent every night we got through it and today they both are very prolific readers, and are excellent students.

  • don
    January 26, 2014 - 14:19

    i see they only have this in ch'town. what about the rest of PEI? or again ch'town is the only place that counts. if they are getting tax payers money from all of PEI why not have this show in the other parts of the island?

  • Peter Llewellyn
    January 25, 2014 - 19:58

    So a child in Grade 3 or grade 7 and can't read, they feel left out and under consistent pressure to "Read" to understand what is on the board or what is in the text books. Their friends can read they are going to special classes, their parents are brought in regularly because the child is not trying or they hope the child will get better on their own, all they have to do is to keep telling the child how important reading is. ----But child can't read what do we do BASED ON THIS ARTICLE WE TELL THE CHILD “There’s so many different little games you can play. ‘I spy’ with letters on signs, even teaching children their live and what their address is, that’s literacy too,” said Beazley. “It’s the sharing of knowledge through recipes, singing, dancing, creating puppets and doing a puppet show together or just having a good chat together at a mealtime promotes everybody’s learning.” AND THE CHILD READS???? This is a serious issue and I am offended that this is offered as help to a child who can't read. This may be fun for those who CAN read not the ones who can't ----and I know i was that child in grade 3 and grade 7 who couldn't read.

    • ME TOO
      January 26, 2014 - 18:30

      Thanks Peter. I felt the same way you felt as I read what you just wrote. I had the very same experience, graduated high school even though I could not read! I was a good listener and somehow I was a good speller, but I had no use for books, had no notion of what books were for, never learned to "read" at all until I had gray hair. Why people bothered to write all that stuff that I could not understand, that made no sense to me at all. My parents were not inclined to do any more school work after they "got grade ten". When we begged for helpl they would not even look at us but would say: "ask the teacher, that's what we send you to school for." Next day, Teacher would punish us for not knowing our "lesson", so we were lost, and we suffer yet from effects of that kind of misery, even in the 9th decade of our life! No excuse for that total neglect of helpless children. Children need a lot of precious communication with parents and family, need to be educated by everyone around them. Tell them everything possible! Don't cheat your own kin!