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Celebrate Family Literacy Day all month long

A love of literacy starts at home

For the past 19 years, January 27 has been celebrated as Family Literacy Day across Canada. It is a day to remind us about the importance of reading to every member of the family. The work we do at Literacy Unlimited makes us especially sensitive to the issue of family literacy, as we see first-hand the impact low literacy has on individuals and the community. We also know that adult literacy challenges can be prevented by starting a lifelong love of reading in childhood. That’s why family literacy is critical for all members of the family.

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We often hear about how important it is to read to young children, as the simple act of reading aloud to a baby or toddler helps their brains and imaginations develop. It’s also a wonderful bonding activity.
But reading in a family setting doesn’t stop in the nursery. Kids and teens of all ages, parents, grandparents and other family members develop special connections when reading and literacy activities are part of home life. Not to mention, when adults help children with any kind of literacy, they keep their own skills sharp.

Literacy in the home can unfold in many ways. It can be as easy as keeping a library (big or small) of books that match individual interests. Shopping at second-hand bookshops is a great way to build a home library or you can visit your local public library.

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Reading, whether aloud or quietly, is the first step to encouraging literacy in family members. From there, you can explore poetry, songs, art and videos, and begin creating your own activities.

Digital literacy is equally important, and that’s where the kids might help the adults out! The same goes for numeracy, a skill that many adults lose once they’re past their math class days. Being engaged with schoolwork is a great way to be a part of a child’s education and keep the adult brain working.


You can find out more about Family Literacy Day at ABC Life Literacy Canada. There are some great activity ideas and tips to get your family going!

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