Week of the Young Child celebrated

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, April 23, 2008

SOUTH POINT — It was a march of the storybook characters as children from the Early Childhood Learning Center dressed up like Cinderella, Thomas the Train, the Little Mermaid and others.

As they got into their places on the parking lot of the center, they waited patiently for dozens of balloons to be launched as the kickoff Tuesday morning of the center’s celebration of the Week of the Young Child.

The special week sponsored by the National Association for the Education of Young Children has been observed by school districts across Lawrence County.

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The South Point center is focusing its observance on literacy and inspiring young readers. But there are other reasons the center has joined in the nationwide celebration.

“It is to focus on the importance of those early years by bringing the children and the community together,” Sue Vanderhoof, center director, said.

Other events this week that involve the community include students from the Open Door School coming to the center to read to the younger children and members from local fire departments and the sheriff’s department bringing

fire trucks and cruisers to the school for Transportation Day.

Heiner’s Bakery will come with loads of dough to show how bread is made. Also Walden Books in Ashland, Ky., and Borders Books at the Barboursville, W.Va., mall are donating new and slightly used books so that every child will have a book of his or her own.

“Just reading (to a child) a book, it allows the kids to hear words, to practice their language skills,” the director said. “We want to bring the community to this location to see what it is we are doing. We want to send a loud and clear message on how valuable these early years are to school success.”