Swindon Stories hosts a digital family day with children’s author and illustrator Nick Sharratt

By Jamie Hill - 1 February 2021


On Wednesday 3 February at 10am, the National Literacy Trust in partnership with Swindon Stories will be going live via Zoom to host a Hungry Little Minds digital family day.

This digital family day is going to be introduced and headed by children’s author and illustrator, Nick Sharratt. Sharratt’s popular book The Whales on the Bus (written by Katrina Charman, illustrated by Nick Sharratt and published by Bloomsbury Children’s Books) will be used as a recurring theme throughout the day.

The session will be going live via Zoom, from 10:00 to 12:30 and is primarily aimed at parents, carers and early years’ settings with children aged 0-5. However, the invite is extended to all families who are welcome to dip in and out of the activities. All activities will be based on the themes of chat, play, read and sing and are designed for parents and carers to be able to follow along, in the comfort of their homes.

In Swindon, Anish Harrison from the National Literacy Trust will be joining in the fun, with a live story and rhyme session, following on with the animal theme. Together with Martyn in Middlesbrough, a further seven areas across the country will be joining in the session, alongside local figures including ‘Martyn the Music Man’ in Middlesbrough, Lisa Clissett from Peterborough Reads and Claire Kelly from The Institute of Wellbeing (Croydon).

The digital family day is forming part of the Hungry Little Minds campaign, which is funded by the Department for Education and supported by the National Literacy Trust. This campaign provides families of children under five with lots of simple and fun activities to easily slot into their daily routines whilst building their child’s speech and language skills at home.

Following on from the digital family day, Swindon Stories are going to be hosting a series of Facebook Lives throughout February based on the themes of chat, play and read. Every Tuesday at 11:00, families with children aged 0-5 are invited to join Anish Harrison for a live story and rhyme time, each session will be 15 minutes with a selection of titles from Macmillan Children’s Books and Child’s Play.

Ella Burns, Senior Project Manager at the National Literacy Trust, said:  “We are really looking forward to hosting this exciting day of interactive family fun, coming to you from all areas of the country. From a draw-a-long with Nick Sharratt to singing, stories and messy play, there should be something for everyone with young children to enjoy.”

Anish Harrison, Swindon Stories Hub Manager at the National Literacy Trust, said: “We have a great tradition in Swindon, in providing stories, rhymes and activities to families with young children and during this difficult time, we’ve ensured we still provide this service. Alongside this wonderful event, Swindon Stories will be doing weekly story and rhyme sessions on a Tuesday at 11am, via our Facebook page. So, don’t forget to join-in with the fun!”

A full schedule of the digital family day will be available on the National Literacy Trust’s Facebook page, but for now all families, carers and early years’ settings who would like to join the session please email Rebecca James: Rebecca.James@literacytrust.org.uk

For more information on the Hungry Little Minds campaign delivery by Swindon Stories please visit (Swindon Stories | National Literacy Trust).

For more simple tips and activities that parents can do to support their children’s literacy at home, visit the national Hungry Little Minds website (https://hungrylittleminds.campaign.gov.uk/) or the National Literacy Trust’s Words for Life website (https://wordsforlife.org.uk/).

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