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Literacy Day 2011: Play has an important role

Darleen Woods and her granddaughter Rylee Woods are playing baseball on the Wii.
Darleen (left) and Rylee Woods play a game on the Wii

Darleen Woods and her granddaughter Rylee Woods are playing baseball on the Wii.

“When Rylee comes to visit she brings her Wii with her. We have fun playing video games together,” says Darleen.

Darleen is one of the many people who will participate in Family Literacy Day, downtown on Jan. 27 – this year’s theme is Play.

Darleen says, “Playing together with my granddaughter has always been important. We like to play video games and disc golf. Playing together keeps us close.”

Campbell River Family Literacy Day will have play-themed events 1:30-4:30 p.m. downtown.

“It’s an exciting time of year for all of us in the literacy community,” says Leah Tremain, a member of Campbell River LiteracyNow. “Families will have Passports to Literacy and if they get at least 3 event stamps they will be entered to win a Wii.”

The relationship between video games and literacy isn’t always apparent but there are studies that show video games can be a healthy addition to literacy.

Tremain says, “The connection between literacy and video games didn’t compute for me until I saw DVD, The Literacy of Video Games: What Kids Learn, How We Can Help and Why It Matters. We are going to include that DVD in the Wii prize pack to help parents understand the connection between video game play and literacy.”

The Tidemark will be holding events in the lobby and on stage. You Are A Superstar welcomes children to play act on the stage of the Tidemark. The library will have a juggler teaching families how to juggle and a fish pond where children can fish for free books. These are just a few of the activities happening at locations such as Wise and Wonderful, Spirit Square, Coho Books, Still Water Books and the Community Centre.

“Play is so important for children. It helps them grow and develop their minds – this is one of the messages we hope comes across on Family Literacy Day, Jan. 27,” says Tremain.

ABC Life Literacy Canada founded Family Literacy Day in 1999. ABC Canada says that playing is a great literacy activity for families because it creates a strong family bond and promotes language comprehension.

“You can learn more about Family Literacy Day and how to win the Wii by picking up a Passport to Literacy at the library or visiting,” says Tremain.