SPEAKING – Bilingual Family Events

Bilingual Family Events:

Teaching parents about reading?

Show them this funny video.

(Ideal for Spanish-speakers!)

“Thank you again for making reading fun, exciting and special to so many children and helping teachers and parents pass along your enthusiasm and ideas.”

–Sandy Lattemore, Library Assistant, Richvale Elementary School, Richvale, CA

Family reading events offer special rewards and challenges! The audience may range from toddlers to grandparents, some of whom may not speak much English. But Matthew takes pride addressing school communities, underscoring the message that reading time is family time and that reading at home has a profound effect on the success of students at home.

Drawing on his award-winning book for families, Give the Gift! 10 Fulfilling Ways to Raise a Lifetime Reader, Matthew provides thought-provoking facts and tips on helping families all enjoy books. He presents in English, Spanish, or both at the same time. Typically, schools schedule the evening event on the same day as Matthew’s daytime assemblies. Students go home excited and bring back their families that night! The content of his Family talks differ from his daytime assemblies but are every bit as fun and interactive. And Matthew adjusts his content as appropriate to engage parents of all backgrounds, from professional to those still new to literacy.

Often schools use Title I funds to sponsor these events as “parent outreach.” If funding for learning materials permits, Matthew can provide books and literacy materials in English and Spanish to be distributed “for free” to all who attend. Serving a simple dinner such as pizza or dessert can also motivate families to attend. For more ideas on making your Family Night a success, please see Matthew’s article, Boosting Attendance to Family Literacy Nights at School.

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