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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America


November 17, 2001 - Issue 49


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Family Focus on Reading


 by Darrell Greer Northern News Services


Rankin Inlet (Nov 07/01) - They may not have the official title, but parents are the first teachers children have.

The children look up to their parents and, with a little direction, learning becomes fun and productive for both.

That's the basis of the Kivalliq Kindergarten Read-at-Home program.

Read-at-Home is part of the Tunngavik Homework Helpers program, which focuses on supporting parents in their role as teachers.

The Read-at-Home program was written and developed by Jim and Betty Krueger and John Strutinski during their time as co-ordinators with Kivalliq School Operations in Baker Lake.

The program was introduced into Leo Ussak elementary school in Rankin Inlet this past month.

School vice-principal Sarah Ayaruak says she hopes the interaction with their parents encourages the young students to read more.

"I think this program will be successful in our school," says Ayaruak. "It's only our first week and the number of parents taking part should get larger as time goes on." "Those who were at the school for the first part of the program certainly seemed to enjoy themselves."

The Read-at-Home program helps kindergarten teachers provide parents with materials and activities to help their children move through the early stages of learning to read.

It is a proven fact that many reading skills and attitudes are learned at home before a child enters the school system.

The right way to hold a book, turn pages and interpret pictures and illustrations are all examples of reading skills that are learned before Grade 1.

Ayaruak says the more prepared parents can help their children be, the easier developing proper learning skills becomes.

"The kids really enjoy the time with their parents and you can see they like to show them or get them to read their favourite books. The program turns reading into a positive experience at a very young age.

"Hopefully, it will help develop a good attitude towards learning that the kids will take with them into the next grade."



     Maps by Travel

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