28 March 2011

The 11th Annual Family Literacy Day

A couple years ago, we heard about this family literacy day thing that was going on in E.S. Rose park.  "Let's go check it out," said we.  So we loaded the kids into the van and drove down there.  It was wonderful!  Put on by Belmont University, it's a child reader's paradise.  Many of the groups on college (be they professional group, academic groups, social groups, fraternities or sororities) set up a blanket and a sign and spread a bunch of books out.  Each group has a different theme and they welcome kids to sit down and be read to or, if the child prefers, do some reading on their own.

When you first come in, you get a small goody bag and a piece of paper with 6 boxes.  Each time you stop at a reading circle, your child gets a sticker in one of the boxes (they usually let the kids choose which sticker they want and which box to put it into).  After two stickers, they can go to the games tables and have a little fun there.  After six stickers, they get to go to a large table of books donated by Book 'em and choose a book or two.  They have refreshments and other games/balloons inside the community center, and there's a large playground that the kids can play on after their reading is done.  To make it even more enjoyable, they have drawings through out the day for various goody bags and prizes (you get a ticket when you enter as well).

The first time we went, Teddy had just turned 3 and Pete was only 7 months old.  But Teddy loved it.  So we went back again next year.  This time, Pete got to enjoy the stories as much as Teddy did.  We got some great pictures of the boys on the playground.  And their photographer got some great pictures of Teddy in the reading circles (as I just found today).

(All pictures property of Belmont University)

We're planning on going again this year.  It'll be a busy day, because it's also the day of the 2nd Saturday booksale at Donelson Library, where they're running a Spring Cleaning special that I'm hoping to take advantage of.  That runs from 10 to 2.  And then the Literacy Day is from 1 to 4.  The two years that we've gone, the weather has been beautiful for it.  I'm hoping for the same again.  But it's a rain or shine event, and I'm sure if it's raining they'll just bring it inside the community center.

If you're in the Nashville area, especially if you have kids, I highly recommend heading over for this.  It's free, it's fun and I think you'll enjoy it.  We've gotten some of Teddy's favorite books from here.  It's really a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

This post is in no way sponsored by Belmont University or anyone affiliated with the Annual Family Literacy Day.  I  posted because I really think it's a great event and would love to see more people attending if they didn't know about it before.