British Council, HSBC host children at Kids Read event
CATHERINE W GICHUKI
DOHA A NUMBER of children aged between five and 12 years participated in the Kids Read event organised by British Council in association with HSBC at the Qatar Scientific Club on Saturday.
The programme was aimed at promoting good reading habits early and later improving performance across the range of life skills as well as developing language skill and critical thinking.
The community project also aimed to open a world of opportunities for children, exposing them to other cultures, attitudes, and issues such as the environment.
The event was themed on environmental issues in celebration of the World Environment Day held annually on June 5. There were various activities, including story-telling, games, art and craft activities, competitions, contest on issues such as volunteerism, value of money, arts and culture, environment, besides others.
The story-telling session involved reading of a number of books on the environment, including Dear Greenpeace and Whole World to children to stimulate their interest in reading and foster a sense of responsibility towards the safety of the planet.
Workshops were also offered to parents to teach them how to inspire their children to read and to help parents and children to bond through books.
Speaking to Qatar Tribune, British Council Qatar Director Simon Winetroube said the Kids Read community event can make a real difference to children’s lives by inspiring them to love reading.
“Reading is so important and this event will equip the children for enjoying reading, not just about teaching and testing them. It’s about developing a love of reading and will help them in life.
Events like this show that reading is fun. We are involving parents and family because whatever the schools do it is for the parents to encourage children to read.
Holding this community event to celebrate World Environment Day adds an extra dimension to the endeavour, he said.
He further said, “This programme will make a difference because if you have kids read in English, it will also help them transfer the love of reading to Arabic.
British Council’s English Project Manager Caroline Cameron said the Kids Read event was part of the range of reading programmes in collaboration with HSBC. Other prorammes organised in association with HSBC include the Qatar Boys Challenge for secondary schools and Qatar Girls Review competition that will take place in summer.
She added that parents could access stories on British Council’s website at LearnEnglish Kids on www.britishcouncil.org/learnenglishkids and LearnEnglish Family on www.learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.