Three billion people around the world struggle with basic level reading, writing and literacy. Studies revealed that those excluded from the education system at an early age often remain disadvantaged for the rest of their lives.
The childrens book Maybe Tomorrow? explores the themes of loss, grief, and the value of a caring friend in a gentle and sensitive way. It will resonate with anyone who has experienced hardship or grief, from the death of a loved one or a pet, to a friend moving away, or the transition to a new home or family situation.
More than just a chance to have fun, play is serious business when it comes to a child’s development. Card games and board games can help teach your little ones academic, social, and emotional skills that they will carry with them throughout the rest of their lives.
The Love of Learning program is the only one of its kind. It provides children with the opportunity to strengthen their literacy and numeracy skills outside of school. But as a Pyjama Angel, you aren’t a tutor. You’re a mentor. Someone who can guide the children in the program and be a positive influence. You show them that reading isn’t really so bad. If you’re scratching your head about what to bring along, we have a few suggestions the could help:
The Empowerment series by Stephen Krensky celebrates the milestones children achieve at this age. This series has of four books: Now I am Big! I Can Do It Myself! I Know a Lot! I Am So Brave!
Another crowd favourite is the Clifford the Big Red Dog series by Norman Bridwell.
The works of Dr Seuss are perfect for this age group!
Other favourite reads of ours include What’s Cooking by Joshua David Stein and Pass it On by Sophy Henn.
The Pyjama Foundation firmly believes in cultivating the aspirations of foster children.
Goodnight stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo is a compilation of the stories of courageous women who challenged the status quo and changed the course of history. It is a great read for both girls and boys.
Another similar series is the Ordinary People Change the World Series by Brad Meltzer. Each book focuses on different key historical figures such as I am Neil Armstrong, I am Jane Goodall and I am Albert Einstein.
This age is an excellent time to introduce the books by Roald Dahl. This is the man who quoted ‘Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it’. His books are great to include in the Love of Learning Program for that reason; to help children believe in magic. You don’t need to look much further than Willy Wonka for an excellent read. Other titles worth bringing include The Fantastic Mr Fox, George’s Marvellous Medicine and Matilda.
The books by Enid Blyton ignite the imaginations of children at this age. Blyton wrote her books early last century but they have endured the test of time. The books are large, but because the stories are written for children, they’re easy to understand. Some of the timeless and most popular series include The Magic Faraway Tree, The Wishing Chair and The Secret Seven
As a Pyjama Angel, you have full access to our dedicated resource library where you can pick up many of these books. We want our kids to use their imaginations, be engaged and love reading just as much as we do. We hope these examples can help your inspire kids to do just that.
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August marked Pyjama Angel Awards month, where throughout the month we showed our appreciation of all our Pyjama Angels who constantly go above and beyond for our Pyjama children.
Our Pyjama Angels are volunteers who are coached, recruited and paired with a child in foster care.
For an hour each week, they visit their Pyjama child and focus on educational-based activities, as an extra support system for foster children.
The aim of the program is not just about invaluable learning but also to show the child they are cherished and loved.
During August we shared posts on our various social media platforms including stories, photos and quotes from Pyjama Angels who have made a significant difference to the life of a child in care.
Pyjama Angels work from eleven regions including Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne as well as eight rural Queensland locations, and volunteers from each were nominated for Pyjama Angel of the Year Awards.
While only one Pyjama Angel from each region was named Pyjama Angel of the Year, we know that all our Pyjama Angels do incredible work and we appreciate the positive influence they are making on children’s lives.
We are constantly blown away by the enthusiasm, commitment and dedication our Pyjama Angels bring each and every week, and we are not the only ones who have noticed.
All our deserving Pyjama Angel Award winners were nominated for the awards, whether that was by their Pyjama child or the child’s carer.
Thank you Pyjama Angels for your contribution and ongoing support!
To see stories and photos from our amazing Pyjama Angels visit our Facebook and Instagram pages.
If you think you or someone you know would want to become a Pyjama Angel please don’t hesitate to visit us at www.thepyjamafoundation.com/volunteer/.
(Pictured L-R: NSW Coordinator, Megan Guenther, National Fundraising Manager, Deborah Scott-Ranson, NSW Pyjama Angel of the Year, Stella Angelo and Australia Post Representative and NSW State Manager, Colin Hindle)