Montclair Public School recently invited families to relax in comfy furniture and read a favourite children’s book in an effort to bring the school community together while strengthening students’ reading skills.
The event, called Snuggle Up and Read, provides an opportunity for parents/guardians, uncles, aunts, grandparents and siblings to spend a morning reading a Kindergarten student’s favourite book. The Oakville school assembled various kinds of furniture and soft mats in the school gymnasium on April 11 for dozens of families to connect with the Kindergarten class.
“Families from our Kindergarten classes were invited to join us for a presentation in the library, where they learned about literacy development and how they can support their child's literacy development, followed by a special Snuggle Up and Read opportunity in our school gym,” explains Kelly Hughes-Allen, Principal at Montclair PS.
Hughes-Allen says an important objective of the 90-minute reading event was to make everyone feel connected to the Montclair PS community.
“It’s important to make the home to school connection for our families and community,” she says. “We wanted to invite our parents to come into our school to learn more about strategies that support literacy development at home, as well as to foster a love of reading in the early years.”
For Zoe Carmichael, a parent of a Montclair PS student, Snuggle Up and Read succeeded in helping her learn new skills to further strengthen her son’s reading abilities.
“I took part in Snuggle Up and Read because my son was excited about having his mom and little sisters join him at school, so I thought it was a great chance to affirm that reading is fun and encourage him and his younger sisters to enjoy reading,” Carmichael explains. “It allowed me to better understand the structure and schedule of reading education throughout the Kindergarten years and gives me an opportunity to help my son stay on track to achieve the correct level of reading at the correct time.”
Malcolm loved the reading time together, Carmichael says.
“He was very excited to have his family join him at school, to wear pyjamas and bring a stuffed animal to school. He listened attentively while we were reading and was excited to tell his dad about the event later that evening.”
Snuggle Up and Read is a great opportunity to connect families with the school curriculum, Hughes-Allen says.
“In the early years, children are starting to demonstrate literacy behaviours that enable beginning readers to make sense of a variety of texts, and begin to demonstrate an awareness and understanding of a variety of written materials that are read by, and to, students,” she says.
“Snuggle Up and Read provided families with an opportunity to learn more about Montclair’s home learning program and how they can support their child with literacy development at home.”