For families with 4 to 6 year old children, there is a new opportunity for assessing their pre-reading skills and predicting what assistance they might need as they begin to learn to read. The Zumbrota Public Library is partnering with The Reading Center of Rochester to offer free reading readiness assessments with a reading specialist. The Reading Center uses national normalized tools to make assessments. They received a grant from the Southern Minnesota Initiative Foundation (SMIF) and donations from the greater community to cover the costs for the assessments and for extending the assessment program to communities outside of Rochester.
This program is especially designed for families who have concerns about their child’s ability to learn to read. Some warning signs that your child might struggle with reading are: late talking compared to other children; difficulty listening and following directions or routines; difficulty remembering numbers, alphabet, or days of the week; easily distracted, restless, or trouble interacting with peers; low interest in reading or writing; family history of reading problems in extended family. Parents who have questions or want to sign up for an assessment can do so in person at the Zumbrota Public Library or by calling the library at 507-732-5211. There are currently appointment slots available on Thursday, February 13 and Thursday, March 13.
Also at the library in February there will once again be opportunities to practice reading with a Reading Education Assistance Dog. Annie the dog and her partner Chrystine will be available for 20 minute reading slots on Saturday mornings February 8, 15, and 22. Kids of all ages and reading abilities are encouraged to enjoy the companionship of this friendly canine as they read out loud or show Annie the pictures. Call or stop by the library to reserve your time with Annie.