Joan Lozier

Joan Lozier

Three-year-old roundup celebrates children Saturday

If you have a three-year-old in your house, it’s time to celebrate, says School District 27 early years coordinator Joan Lozier.

If you have a three-year-old in your house, it’s time to celebrate, says School District 27 early years coordinator Joan Lozier.

An exciting upcoming event sponsored by the School District called 3 Year Old Round Up is coming to the Gibraltar Room on this Saturday, Sept. 9 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

“The Round Up will include games, live music with Success by 6, snacks, giveaways and information from community service providers about early childhood development,” she said.

She explained the event, supported by Ready Set Learn funds, is an opportunity for parents to learn about typical development of three-year-olds, helping them recognize red flags that indicate when to look for outside help.

“It’s important to support parents in any way possible,” Lozier says. “We recognize that parents are the first and most important teachers, and it’s their nurturing and their attention that has a lasting impact.

“We’ve seen children have such a positive experience entering school when their development has been supported all along the way. For instance, if a child has speech or language delays, struggles with social interaction or has problems with physical coordination, and if you catch it early, if can often be easily corrected.”

Williams Lake has some valuable resources to support families, Lozier says.

Agencies attending the event include Denisiqi Services, Interior Health, Child Development Centre, Three Corners Health and Cariboo Friendship Society.

“These agencies will have professional staff at the Round Up to meet with families and answer any questions or concerns,” Lozier says. “Parents will have information at their fingertips to help them prepare their children for school and for lifelong success.”

Another SD Early Years program starting soon is the annual StrongStart, a free program where parents can spend time with their kids doing activities that support their child’s learning in key areas of development.

“Research shows us that a child’s brain development between birth and school age is so important. Every experience they have are important and will influence future health and happiness,” Lozier says. “Having developmental support in the early years makes the transition to school smoother. I’m happy to see more and more StrongStarts and local ECEs are working closely with Kindergarten teachers to make the transition to Kindergarten as seamless as possible.”

The focus of the 3 Year Old Round Up is three-year-olds, but brothers and sisters are welcome, too, says Lozier.

“It will be wonderful to celebrate all babies born in 2012 – it was a very good year,” Lozier says with a smile. “Besides the chance to access all community supports for you and your three-year-old, there will be lively, fun, interactive activities for your little buckaroo.

“What we want most at the Round Up is for parents to feel that their three-year-old is supported and celebrated, and that our community has resources and professionals standing by to help.”

For more information about early learning activities, including StrongStart times and location, the 3-Year-Old Roundup and the new Tales and Trails hands-on nature program, visit www.sd27.bc.ca or phone 250-398-3839.