Read Together, Grow Together
The Meadowridge Read Together, Grow Together program was developed to get everyone involved in our children's learning (and love!) of reading.
Building the foundation for literacy skills is a combined effort. When early learners join Meadowridge, they have already heard language—through songs, lyrics, stories, and conversation—and been active in expressing their own thoughts, sometimes even in another language.
Reading with our children is crucial to building literacy. Not only is there a physical element to being with a loved one, hearing your voice creates a personal connection to the characters, illustrations, stories, and themes. These memories are imprinted in your child's mind. Reading to your child is an important thing all parents can do. With a strong belief in families being powerful role models and a child's first teacher, the Read Together, Grow Together idea began.
The Kindergarten team, Ms. Jennifer Maynes and Ms. Tamara Warner, collaborated with Mrs. Heather Nicholson, our teacher librarian, to develop this special program. Together, they sifted through a collection of 200 books. They poured into them, deliberated over them, and eventually whittled them down: from the 200 books read by our team, 30 were handpicked for Read Together, Grow Together. Each of the special books represents the best of the program's six categories: friendship and family, classics, award winners, rhyming, humour, and animals.
"One great thing about this program is all the different genres of books the students are exposed to. Each book has a question inside that the students and families must answer. I love this part as it allows families to talk about the book, think on it and ask questions which are all very important reading skills."
Meadowridge Kindergarten Parent
When students join Kindergarten, they receive their very own Reading Passport; and, together with their family, they'll use the passport to track and celebrate their reading. When students finish a book, they are delighted to receive a stamp in their passport. Over time, students look forward to stamping all 30 blank spots, each stamp representing hours of reading as a family.
The Read Together team even recorded audiobooks for all 30 selections—recorded by our very own staff! Students enjoy listening along and trying to guess whose voice belongs to who. These recordings were especially helpful for our families learning English too. It's these types of touches that have created a special, motivating program that is easy to access for everyone.
We see how a love for reading together grows with our families and students. It really helps to continue a positive foundation for reading when parents read to their children. There are countless benefits of reading to your children and with schedules this doesn't always happen regularly, this program helps to support our families.
The Kindergarten Teaching Team
As the families have finished up with reading together, the students are now moving into the steps of reading to their families. After building a repertoire of sight words, Kindergarten students will now be taking home books to read to their family. After the success of the Read Together, Grow Together Program, students are excited to be reading and to move into the next phase of their literary learning.