Ngura Yadurirn Children and Family Centre celebrated Book Week last Wednesday with afternoon tea and a Storytelling Buddies event.
The Connected Beginnings Team and Ngura Yadurirn staff have been busy supporting Storytelling Buddies in Ceduna and surrounding communities.
The concept is designed to raise the profile of reading in the early years and to encourage families to read and tell stories with their children at home, with a focus on children from birth to eight years of age.
Family Connections Coordinator of Connected Beginnings Natalie Ross said research had shown that children’s experiences in their early years significantly affected their brain development, ability to learn, social skills and self-esteem.
She said children who have had early exposure to books, stories, reading and libraries learnt to read more successfully, and do better at school and in later life.
In the first three years of life, she said some children would hear thirty million more words than others.
Storytelling Buddies has been launched with special community readers visiting Koonibba Preschool and school, Penong Preschool, school and playgroup, Ceduna Area School, Crossways Lutheran School and other early years groups in Ceduna, including Save the Children, Storytime at the library, as well as Ngura Yadurirn Children and Family Centre playgroups and parent groups including an Elders morning tea in preschool.
So far 326 children have been given books to keep and 1113 stories have been read at home by families.