Newspaper article Daily News (Warwick, Australia)

Building on Imagination Reading the Benefits; Books Predict Child Happiness, Well Being and Economic Success

Newspaper article Daily News (Warwick, Australia)

Building on Imagination Reading the Benefits; Books Predict Child Happiness, Well Being and Economic Success

Article excerpt

Byline: Bianca Hrovat bianca.hrovat@warwickdailynews.com.au

THERE will be no child left behind in Warwick as early literacy programs introduced across the region work to ensure future academic success.

Free programs such as First Five Forever (F5F) and Read and Grow combat language development delays that affect 11.3 per cent of children in Warwick, according to the Australian Early Development Census.

The percentage was significantly higher than elsewhere in the state and the nation, which sat at 8 per cent and 6.6 per cent respectively.

The F5F program rolled out through Southern Downs libraries gives children aged between zero and five-year a selection of free books including Pig the Pug and Hairy McLary.

Reading during the first five years of life was vital to language development, according Warwick librarian Marianne Potter.

"Families are the first teachers in a child's life," Mrs Potter said.

"So supporting them during that time and giving them access to books and activities is incredibly important."

According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, reading to children creates the building blocks for future development and set them up for later success in academics, employment and wellbeing.

Books supplied by Warwick Library can be found in doctors' offices, waiting rooms, kindergartens and day cares across the Rose City. …

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