December 12,

A Novel Approach to the Holidays

December 6, 2017 – Local Families Encouraged to Include a Book for a Child as Part of Their Holiday Gift-Giving

Call them ‘presents’ of mind, and an opportunity to start a new holiday gift-giving tradition at your home.

Local families are encouraged to include a gift-wrapped book among the presents that children will open this holiday season. Peterborough Public Health is again promoting the Book on Every Bed campaign (www.familyreading.org/great-ideas/a-book-on-every-bed). Started several years ago in New York State, the Book on Every Bed campaign is designed to support child literacy while encouraging a life-long love of reading.

“Books may seem old-fashioned, but are a great way to unplug from electronic devices,” says Leisa Baker, a Public Health Nurse with Peterborough Public Health. “Reading supports a child’s speech and language skills, which is critical for future success in life. Parents and children can also spend quality time together reading and exploring new worlds in books.”

Taking part in the Book on Every Bed campaign is as easy as one, two, three:

  1. Select a book, either a new, donated or cherished one. Make the choice meaningful, by finding a book with a topic that interests the child. Parents can also share a favourite book from their own childhood. To make the book even more special, include a heart-felt inscription in it.
  2. Wrap it. A book that is carefully wrapped holds the mystery of what story or adventure is waiting to be discovered, and presents the book as the special gift it’s meant to be for a child.
  3. Place the book at the foot of a child’s bed. This ensures it will be the first thing a child sees on Christmas morning, the first day of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, birthday or any holiday that is celebrated.

“Selecting a book that is age-appropriate and appealing to a child’s own interests makes it more likely to be picked up and enjoyed,” Baker adds. For example, toddlers and preschoolers may be drawn to books with repetitive and rhyming text, plenty of pictures and interactive features such as holes or flaps for lifting. For older children less inclined to read, a story with an exciting plot is more likely to grab their attention and make them want to read.

To further support reading and child speech skills, local residents can visit the KidTalk website (www.kidtalk.on.ca) or call Peterborough Public Health at 705-743-1000.

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For further information, please contact:

Leisa Baker, Public Health Nurse
705-743-1000 ext. 312

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