BOOKS have been gifted to schools and nurseries as part of a project that's boosting reading and writing skills from an early age.
Tameside Council Executive Member for Education, Achievement and Equalities, Councillor Leanne Feeley visited Yew Tree Primary School in Dukinfield to present the latest collection of books and see the Making it REAL (Raising Early Achievement in Literacy) project in practice.
The Council-led project is helping parents to engage in play that will support the development of early skills for language, reading and writing at home. It also helps build stronger relationships between parents and Early Years teachers and practitioners.
Making it REAL is part of the Tameside Loves Reading campaign and the strategy to improve outcomes for five-year-olds, as well part of the practice model for the new Family Hubs that will be coming to Tameside this spring.
The project is now in its second year with 11 primary schools and six pre-schools and private day nurseries taking part. Having completed training, they are now delivering the project. Each early year's provider arranges three home visits where adults and children participate in literacy-based play activities often using materials and everyday items found around the home. Early Years workers in Tameside's Children's Centres and Family Hubs are also being trained to spread Making it REAL to families of younger children.
All nursery parents or carers attend Making it REAL events in each educational setting during the year. This includes performances by local theatre company 2 Boards and a Passion.
Twelve books have been gifted to each establishment with Cllr Feeley presenting Yew Tree Primary School's nursery with their collection and seeing the children getting involved. The event ended with a story being read to the children.
Cllr Feeley said: "It was a pleasure to visit the nursery at Yew Tree Primary School and see the success the Making it REAL project is having by engaging children in reading and writing through play, and to support it further by presenting these lovely books.
"Reading from a young age is really important. Research shows that reading with a child has a lasting effect on language, vocabulary and literacy skills and is hugely beneficial to their development and later academic achievements."
Yew Tree Primary School co-headteacher Janet Postlethwaite said: "The project is making a real difference in supporting our children, parents and staff to boost reading and writing skills.
"I'd like to thank Tameside Council for the support given and for gifting these books that will be much read and much loved by countless children."
To find out more about Tameside's educational services visit www.tameside.gov.uk/Education
Pic caption Tameside Council Executive Member for Education, Achievement and Equalities, Councillor Leanne Feeley hands out books to children at Yew Tree Primary School's nursery.