'A key way to support literacy': Family Reading Kits available at Calgary Public Library

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Five different kits featuring a children's book and activity booklet are now available for Calgary families to pick up or download as part of new initiative from the Calgary Public Library.

The launch of Family Reading Kits, aimed at helping families connect and support lifelong learning, is being done in conjunction with Family Literacy Day on Jan. 27.

"Library members can pick up one of five different kits, each featuring a different children’s book on loan and an activity booklet, which is theirs to keep," read a release.

"The kits cover a range of reading levels and the booklets include discussion questions, activities inspired by the book, digital resources, and more staff-recommended titles to encourage family reading."

The kits are available at six Calgary Public Library locations -- Central, Crowfoot, Fish Creek, Nose Hill, Seton, and Shawnessy. The kits can also be downloaded and printed at home or at any Library location and families are encouraged to try more than one.

"Reading as a family is a key way to support literacy at any age. These kits will help families foster a lifelong love of learning in their kids and also create space for important conversations about our world," said Calgary Public Library CEO Sarah Meilleur.

The kits feature a range of titles, including three grade-school books, one teen selection, and one picture book. This year’s titles are:

  • New Kid by Jerry Craft
  • Race to the Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse
  • Forest World by Margarita Engle
  • The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry
  • Ada Twist, Scientist by Andrea Beaty 

The books were chosen based on their popularity and for the diverse viewpoints they provide and should appeal to all ages.

“Research shows that reading together benefits every member of the family, but as children learn to read independently, there are less opportunities to read with their caregivers and siblings, even though they may want to,” said Kate Schutz, service design lead for the Calgary Public Library.

“Family Reading Kits provide every member of the family with an opportunity to foster meaningful connections over a mutual love of reading.

“The questions and activities in the kit invite families to dive deeper into the book, making connections to themselves and the world around them, through fun, hands-on experiences designed for all ages and interests."

More information is available online.