December 2008

In This Issue:

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Edmonton, AB T5K 0M1

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"Knowledge is the currency of our economy. If you want to see your workforce in 15 years, look at your children today."

Frank McKenna,
Pan Canadian Interactive Literacy Forum
April 2008

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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

Happy Holidays!

Learning Together Shows Positive Outcomes for Parents and Children

The Learning Together program was re-launched in September 2008 in a new format as a 36-week program. Funding received from Alberta Advanced Education and Technology and a partnership with Edmonton Catholic Schools have enabled twelve families to meet twice a week at St. Gerard School in north-central Edmonton.

The children attend a preschool program with a literacy focus and their parents (and one grandmother) attend their own adult literacy class where they discuss parenting issues, child development, family literacy activities and how to improve and support their own literacy. The parents and children join together once a week to engage in literacy and learning activities, such as: sharing a story, playing a game or making a discovery at the many activity centres around the room.

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Improving Literacy Levels Among Aboriginal Canadians

In 2003 Canada participated in the International Adult Literacy and Skills Survey. Literacy levels were rated using a five-level scale with Level 3 considered to be the level required “for coping with the increasing skill demands of the emerging knowledge and information economy”.

Among Canadians aged 16 to 65, 42% failed to meet this standard; among Aboriginal peoples, this number was even higher. In urban Manitoba and Saskatchewan, as well as in the Yukon, Northwest Territories and Nunavut, the proportion of Aboriginal adults whose literacy skills fall below Level 3 is at least 16 percentage points higher than their non-Aboriginal counterparts.

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Family Literacy an Every Day Success

A child’s early positive interaction with adults helps form the basis for success in school, work and life. Engaging young children in literacy activities at home enables parents and other family members to become active participants in their children’s education at an early age.

Many parents ask when and how to share books with their child. Here are a few suggestions:

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Enhanced Charitable Tax Credit

Did you know that if you donate more to registered charities like the Centre for Family Literacy, you now have an opportunity to receive a higher tax credit on your income tax return? As part of the Alberta government’s new Community Spirit Program, the combined provincial and federal charitable tax credits gives Albertans a 50-cent tax credit for every dollar donated over $200.

For example, if you donate a total of $500 to several charities throughout the year, you would receive a non-refundable tax credit of $200. This means your donations would cost you about $300.

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Family Literacy Day World Record Attempt

ABC CANADA Literacy Foundation is inviting Canadians of all ages to help set a new Guinness World Record for “Most Children Reading With an Adult, Multiple Locations”. Join the Centre for Family Literacy’s event and help set a new record.

Where: Edmonton City Hall
When: Saturday, January 24, 10 a.m. to 12 noon

More details will be available on our website in January.

Leading with Literacy Breakfast

The annual Leading with Literacy Breakfast celebrating the winners of the Lois Hole Memorial Literacy Awards will take place:

When: Tuesday, January 27
Where: Crowne Plaza Edmonton Chateau Lacombe
Tickets: $40

Raise a Reader Book Drive and Sale

The Edmonton Journal’s fourth annual book drive and sale in support of Raise a Reader will take place:

Book Drive: Sunday, March 22 – Victoria School of Performing and Visual Arts
Sunday, March 29 – J. H. Picard Catholic School

Book Sale: April 17-20 – Beside Alberta Aviation Museum at 11410 Kingsway Avenue
Watch for further details on our website or in the Edmonton Journal.