Family Literacy Nights



Family Literacy Night Volunteer Link:

Family Night Basics
Thanks to grant funds from Marathon Classic and the Community Foundation for supporting Family Nights.
Wild About Reading!


  • To provide information to parents about how they can help their children develop early literacy skills at home.
  • Introduce parents/care givers to literacy standards
  • Provide/model games and activities to teach literacy concepts
  • Have fun

Although all events will be tailored to meet the individual schools’ needs, a basic outline is below:
Sample Schedule: (there will be a paper program for each school)
6:00-6:30   Dinner (optional)
6:30-6:35   Welcome and Introductions
6:35-6:45   Guest story teller reads aloud to whole group
6:45-6:50   Explanation of rotations and dismissal for activities
6:50-7:10   Rotation I
7:15-7:35   Rotation II
7:40-8:00   Rotation III
8:00           Prize Drawing

Some schools will opt to provide dinner (pizza, chips, cookie and drink).  “If you feed them, they will come.”  Other schools will opt to have light snacks (popcorn, veggies and dip, cookies, drinks).  No food is also an option.

Welcome and Introductions:
Everyone will begin in a central location.  A representative will welcome families and thank them for joining us.  Brief introductions and thankyous will be given to representatives from the Literacy Coalition, Handbags That Help and the Hancock Leadership Class of 2016.  The guest story teller will also be introduced.

Guest Story Teller:
StorytellerBuilding facilitators are working to choose a guest reader.  Facilitators will choose a “local celebrity” the children will enjoy.  The reader will model a read-a-loud book with the whole group.  The pages of the book will be projected onto a screen for all to see.  If space and resources permit, parents will receive background information on the strategies (like inference, prediction, vocabulary, author and illustrator) the reader uses with the children.


Dismissal to activities:
rotationsDuring rotations, students and their parents/care givers will participate in literacy activities with volunteers or teachers.  Depending on how the school decides to set up the stations, each “family” will receive a schedule or travel itinerary for the evening.  The rotation schedule will prevent overcrowding in one area or activity.  For example:  Families with a blue schedule will begin in the gym for the first rotation, the cafeteria for the second and the library for the third.  Families with a green schedule will begin in the cafeteria, move to the library and then the gym.  Families with a yellow schedule will begin in the library, go to the gym second and end in the cafeteria.  Everyone will end the evening in the same location for the prize drawings.


Rotations will be tailored for the school and the space available for the event.  Some schools will only have one room (like the cafeteria) to use.  Others plan to use classroom space.  One school is planning to use the gym, cafeteria, and library for the three rotations.  Signals will be given when it is time to move to the next area.

It might also be scheduled so there are no rotations and children can simply go from one station to another during the allotted time.  This might be the case if all stations are located in a gym.

Regardless of space, activities for each age group will be available.  As children complete the activity at each station they can get their “ticket” punched by the volunteers running the station.  If children receive a predetermined number of punches on their tickets, they can enter them into the prize box for drawings.

Prize Drawing:
Prize Drawing Ticket
Children will have the option of entering their tickets into a drawing for prizes at the end of the evening.  Tickets will most likely be drawn by the principal or other designated person from the school.  After the last prize is given away, the evening will commence.



School Date Time
Riverdale Oct. 20 5:30-7:30
FC Preschool Nov. 17 5:00-6:30
Van Buren Dec. 13 5:30-7:00
Liberty Benton Jan. 12 6:00-8:00
Lincoln Jan. 24 5:30-7:00
Whittier Feb. 16 5:30-7:00
Jacobs Mar. 9 5:00-7:00
Arlington May TBD


Volunteers you might be doing one or more of the following:

Please arrive 15-30 minutes prior to the event.  Sign-up Genius is available to reserve your spots:

Set up
Registration table (Base Camp)
Serving dinner
Cleaning up dinner
Setting up tables and activities (Safari Stops)
Do an activity with children (Tour Guides)
Collecting prize tickets
Directing Traffic
Collecting parent surveys
Clean Up
Safari Stops
Safari Stops: 

  • Activities are based on literacy skills that children can practice at home with parents/care givers.
  • Bag or box with all items needed.
  • Bag or box will be at a table.
  • Set up and clean up – please be sure all items are returned to the bag/box.
  • Directions are included
  • Modify the activity to match the level or age of the child
  • Have fun.  This isn’t a test.  If a child needs help or needs an answer, it’s ok to give it to him/her.
  • Complete the half sheet at the end of the evening and return it to Chelsea.  (Be sure to mark if any items need to be replenished.)
  • If the activity is a flop – tell Chelsea!  It will be replaced with something else for the next school.