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  • Writer's pictureAshley

How to celebrate National Family Literacy Month

Updated: Oct 30, 2022

November is National Family Literacy Month. It’s a chance to put an extra emphasis on the love of reading and the importance of it, while also building family bonds and relationships.

Literacy isn’t simply reading and writing, however. The United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) defines literacy as “a means of identification, understanding, interpretation, creation, and communication in an increasingly digital, text-mediated, information-rich and fast-changing world.”

It’s not just sitting down to read a book or finish a school report. It’s the ability to communicate in the world we live in today.

When we look at it that way, you can see why it’s so important to make sure our kids are learning the value in and finding success in reading, writing, and comprehension.

This isn’t just a blog post about teaching kids to decode and encode words. No. It’s a blog post about helping families understand why literacy is important and what they can do to help.

So, let’s jump in. Here are 10 ways you can celebrate this special month.

1. Make use of your local library.

Visit as a family and have everyone check out a few books that they think look interesting. Look at your library’s website, search for some books on a certain topic, and reserve them for pick up. Check out the classes, clubs, workshops, and book readings that your library hosts monthly.

2. Join a book club.

Look for kid’s book clubs or even whole family ones through your local library, community center, or tutoring businesses. If it is a kid-only book club, you could read the same book with them and discuss the book club discussions with them afterward.

3. Look up book festivals near you.

Look for book festivals in your area. Do a quick search and you are sure to find several options. Although, you may have to schedule them on the calendar for the future. Book festivals are a great way to explore new books, genres, and writings. As well as get to see book readings, meet authors, and gain a new appreciation for books and writers.

4. Look for books to give as gifts.

The holiday season is approaching and what better than gift books? As a family, take some time to look for books that would fit an individual’s interests, go to a bookstore to get those books, and then wrap them together. This will make reading seem like a special gift!

5. Write notes.

Since literacy is more than just reading, take some time to practice those writing skills. If your family truly enjoyed a book, send the author a handwritten note expressing what you loved about their story. You can practice writing sentences, paragraphs, and full letters as you discuss what you loved and why.

6. Make your own stories.

As you engage in lots of reading and discussing this month, you may have the urge to tell your own story. Take time as a family or allow your child(ren) lots of time to brainstorm and create a draft of their own story. Once the story has been written, find a way to publish it. There are several websites where children are able to create books online that can be shared with family and friends. There are also several organizations where you can submit children’s writings.

7. Volunteer to read.

Use your skills to make someone else’s day better. Volunteer to read through the local hospital, nursing homes, or sibling’s classes. If you have family who lives far away, why not schedule a video call for your child(ren) to read to cousins, aunts and uncles, and grandparents? Most children love the opportunity to show off, be the center of attention, and earn praise for their skills. If you have a child who doesn’t like reading in front of other people, encourage them to read to pets and really young children.

8. Explore new formats.

If you are used to reading only physical books with your children, try an audiobook or reading a digital copy. Both of these are usually available through your local library. Almost all of these books can be downloaded onto whatever device you have.

9. Try new kinds of readings.

Do you love reading fiction? Try some nonfiction books. Does your child love animated films? Encourage them to read a graphic novel or comics. If your older child seems bored with reading, help them find short stories or poems that may grab their attention. Just something new.

10. Work together to try new things.

Use nonfiction books and articles to learn a new hobby, craft, or skill that can be shared with your family. Check out a new kind of cookbook, learn about something you’ve always been interested in, or research something your child(ren) is interested in.

No matter what you choose to do, make sure that you are getting family enjoyment out of reading, writing, discussing, and responding to readings.

Which of these will your family commit to in the month of November? Let me know in the comments!

If you have further questions or are interested in learning more about how 1-1 tutoring can help your K-5 child specifically, click here to sign up for a free phone consultation.

If you’re looking for fun and engaging ways to help your child practice skills at home, download my FREE guide. It will show you how to take homework and learning time from boring worksheets at the kitchen table, to fun, active, and engaging learning.

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