September 2007

In This Issue:

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"Most children’s language abilities will flourish under the right circumstances, which include a secure home that encourages verbal interaction."

Alison Palkhivala.
Early Childhood Learning Bulletin,
Canadian Council on Learning,
June 2007

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The Centre for Family Literacy gratefully acknowledges the ongoing support of the following:

An Edmonton Community
Of Lifelong Learners

Edmonton & Area
Child & Family Services Region 6

Pilot Program a Success

The Centre’s Rhymes that Bind program participated in an exciting new partnership with West Edmonton Parent Link Centre and Touchmark at Wedgewood this past spring session.

We brought our oral literacy program for families with children aged 0 – 3 years into a seniors complex – and brought the seniors into the program too! This intergenerational program was a huge success with children, parents and seniors interacting, enjoying the rhymes and songs together and visiting after the program ended.

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New Partnership in Support of Literacy
Edmonton Public Library and Centre for Family Literacy

For many years the Centre has been delivering family literacy programs such as Rhymes that Bind and Books for Babies in partnership with the Edmonton Public Library. On September 5, at Sprucewood Library, the two organizations signed a Memorandum of Understanding to formalize and strengthen their efforts to increase literacy for Edmonton children, families and adults.

The signing event included a demonstration of the family literacy program Storysacks using the story “Jingle Dancer”. A highlight of the event was the performance of a Jingle Dance.

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Life-Long Learning Begins in the Home

Alison Palkhivavla writes that ”as many as 8% to 12% of [Canadian] preschoolers and 12% of children entering school have language impairment, defined as poor listening and speaking skills compared with peers. “ (1) Children with language impairment are often at risk of developing behaviour problems, academic difficulties, learning disabilities, shyness or even anxiety disorders. It is not hard to imagine why children with language impairment might have a more difficult time in early social settings, and in making friends. Sadly, many will also develop reading disorders.

Research tells us that early, regular, and fun child-adult interactions such as songs, rhymes, word play, and storytelling help children develop language skills that are in fact the foundation for all future literacy and learning.

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Lois Hole Memorial Literacy Awards
Call for Nominations

The Centre for Family Literacy is seeking nominations for the second annual Lois Hole Memorial Literacy Awards. The awards celebrate individuals, organizations or businesses that have demonstrated a commitment to literacy

Learner Award
Presented to an outstanding individual in one of the Centre’s adult or family literacy programs who has shown a commitment to their own learning and or that of their child.

Community Leadership Award
Presented to an outstanding individual, business or group who reflects the Centre’s mission and has through their efforts demonstrated an ongoing commitment to family literacy in Alberta.

The nomination deadline is Tuesday, October 30, 2007. For a nomination form and to see past recipients, go to famlit.ca/about.awards.html.

International Perspective and Literacy
New Focus at Institute

In August, Family Literacy Facilitators, Coordinators and Administrators from across the province gathered at the Fantasyland Hotel in Edmonton for the Centre’s annual Family Literacy Training Institute.

The Linking 1-2-3 and A-B-C workshop was presented for the first time at the Institute. The workshop included hands on ideas, strategies and practices for incorporating numeracy in family literac

Maren Elfert, Public Relations/Programme Specialist at UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning, provided an international perspective. She spoke about the European Union project “QualiFLY” that involved pilot programs in Bulgaria, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Malta and Turkey. Of particular interest were the innovative fathers’ programmes and the remediation programmes with elder children.

The Alberta Prairie C.O.W. Keeps Travelling

Like many Albertans, we have been carefully watching the price of gasoline over the past several months concerned about the impact it might have on the cost of the Alberta Prairie C.O.W. project.

We were delighted to receive a call from Jim Piliouras, Senior Sales Coordinator at Petro-Canada advising us that they would again be donating gas cards to the C.O.W. Bus.

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Charitable Gifts with Retirement Funds

For the past two years in an effort to build endowment funds, we have had a number of articles in Centre Page about ways to include charities in your long term planning.

Many of us have planned for the future by contributing to retirement funds. It has been found that most Canadians do not use all of these funds before they pass away. In that case, leftover retirement funds make an excellent charitable gift because the charitable tax credit will offset the tax on the distribution. Leaving the funds to a beneficiary, who is not a spouse or dependant child or grandchild, generally would cause the full value of the funds to be taxed in the year of your death, but with the charitable gift you preserve the funds intact for a charity whose work you want to support.

The recommended procedure is to designate the charity as beneficiary of all or a portion of your RRSP and RRIF funds. The tax credit will entirely offset the tax on the distributions because the creditable amount of a charitable bequest is 100 % of net income. Thus no part will be consumed by taxation.

A charitable gift is one method of assuring that all or most of the funds you spent a lifetime accumulating are used for the purposes you choose.

New Resource Materials

The Centre has recently updated our Family Literacy Tip Sheets which are available on our website at famlit.ca/resources/resources.html. Check out the Tips for Parents and the Recommended Book Lists.

We have recently released a brand new resource – Literacy Tutor’s Guide, Reading for Meaning & The Writing Experience. Learn more about the Guide on our website at famlit.ca

Upcoming Events

Starbucks Fundraiser for CFL – September 26
Bring your family and friends to the opening of the new Starbucks in South Edmonton Common (1751 102 St) from 4-9 p.m. In exchange for a donation to the Centre you will receive free coffee, snacks and will be eligible for great prizes.

READ IN Week – October 1-5
The goal of READ In Week is to involve as many people as possible in reading events and activities. For more information on events and how to participate go to www.epl.ca/readin/

Raise-A-Reader Day – October 3
Volunteers will be out early in the morning in the downtown core seeking donations in support of family literacy. The Centre is a beneficiary of this program and we encourage you to be generous as they “hawk” the Edmonton Journal in exchange for a donation.