Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Christmas 2015

Christmas is always a great time for sharing and books!

This Christmas QLNB joined the Crescent Valley Community Tenants' Association with our traditional colouring, card-making, reading / singing corner.  We also helped out with a donation of 55 quality children's books.

In the Old North End, we hung out at the Nick Nicolle Centre's party with our indoor storytent.  We took along our 'writing box' so kids could make cards or decorations while we read, sang, and talked with families.  Across the way, we worked with Rivercross to put more than 100 books in their family Christmas boxes.

Then it was our time - which meant Christmas carols and musical games with our friends at the CVCTA adult social.

Monday, November 2, 2015

Books for Hallowe'en

QLNB got to hang out with the Rivercross Mission gang for their 'Trunk or Treat' on Hallowe'en.  We dressed up as a couple of our favourite children's book characters - Gerald and Piggy - and took our bookwagon over to the parking lot where we handed out about 150 books. :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Bookworms Corner, St. Stephen

St. Stephen, NB

On our recent visit to see Charlotte County's storytents, we wanted to learn about their successes, challenges and adaptions.  One challenge we were not expecting was a difficulty in purchasing new or replacement books mid-summer.  We learned that the town of St. Stephen, home to the FRC, has only one bookstore - the very new, independent bookseller Bookworms Corner.

A bookstore selfie

Bookworms is located at 174 Milltown Blvd.  It offers both new and gently-used second hand books.  (We picked up a board book version of Barbara Reid's Sing a Song of Mother Goose.)  You can also purchase a gift certificate.  True to its name, the store is located in one corner of Andy's Pool, Spa & Stove Shop.

Books and a spa!  What more does the new homeowner need?

Seriously, though, effective family and community literacy work typically builds on many kinds of private and public resources: schools, libraries, health centres, job-finding clubs, leisure groups, community gardens, housing associations and, yes, bookstores.

We've heard that its a big job to keep a small, independent bookstore alive.  We don't know if that's true, but we wanted to give a special shout out to Bookworms.  Thanks for being there when we wanted to purchase a quality children's book.  We hope you do well over the coming months and years.  If we get down your way again, we will certainly stop in!

Monday, August 10, 2015

Storytents in Charlotte County

Storytent in Blacks Harbour

This summer, QLNB was welcomed down to Charlotte County to see how our neighbours to the southeast manage their storytents.

Charlotte County, NB

We spent a wonderful morning in St. George visiting the Charlotte County Family Resource Centre's storytent at Thompson Field.  Then, we visited tents offered in the Blacks Harbour Municiple Park and outside the Milltown Elementary School.

Cheryl checks out books at Thompson Field

We snooped through their books and learned a lot about fancy sittin' chairs as well as location planning and promotion.  We commiserated about the state of modern canopies and hard to get books.

Wendell checks out chairs at the Milltown tent

We noted our hosts' great working relationship with the Boys & Girls Club and some nearby daycare providers, and the way they were able to offer storytent as a way to enrich existing programs and resources.  Super work, gang!  Thanks for having us down.

You can find out more about all the Charlotte County Family Resource Centre's programs by visiting their Facebook page or the FRC website.  Their physical location is at 126 Milltown Blvd in St. Stephen.

Sunday, July 26, 2015

South-End Storytents

Quality Learning NB has been very pleased to work with "People United in the Lower South End" or P.U.L.S.E. to offer a Sunday morning storytent at Rainbow Park.  We've been offering books and a cozy space to read or borrow each Sunday, rain or shine.

Here's a big shout out as well to the Queen Square Farmers Market who welcomed us in to share the park with them on some very busy market days!

We're in Rainbow Park from 9:30 - 11:30 each morning up until August 23rd.  Just look for the big red tent on the north side, near the accessible playground.

For more info about P.U.L.S.E., you can visit their Facebook page or stop by their location at 251 Wentworth Street.

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Saint John Free Public Library supports Storytents

Heather McKend, QLNB Board member; Maryann Lewell, SJFPL Board President;
Cheryl Brown, QLNB Coordinator; Suzanne Daley,  SJFPL Board member

QLNB would like to thank the Saint John Free Public Library for its continued support of our family literacy work.  This year, the library is providing support for the Quality Storytent program and Summer Reading Club outreach in three neighbourhoods: the Old North End (Victoria Square); the Silver Falls community; and a south end neighbourhood not yet determined.

Quality Storytents is a weekly outdoor reading and book borrowing program that takes place rain or shine in public green spaces.  The Summer Reading Club is a province wide public library program that encourages reading by allowing children to set a reading goal for the summer, track their progress with logbooks and stickers and celebrate their accomplishments.

We are pleased and proud to have had the Saint John Free Public Library on board, as a funder and a friend, over more than a decade of community literacy work beginning with its role as a founding partner of the Saint John Family Literacy Advisory Committee.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Study Groups: Supporting Adult Learning

When some provincially sponsored essential skills and GED preparation classes ended a week before June's GED writing, a few Old North End residents looked to QLNB and the Nick Nicolle Centre for support.  The Centre provided space for, and QLNB hosted, three extra full days of group study. The foreign policies of various Canadian prime ministers, the ill-effects of inopportune comma placement and the deeper mysteries of Pythagoras' theorems were all scrutinized; intermingled with inferred poetics and the cellular structure of water plants.

Alas, all good thing must end.  On the eve of the GED write, and just ahead of the start of ONE Change's summer programming for children and teens, we called it quits and packed away our adult resources for the summer.

Going forward, QLNB is working with some of our friends to develop a handful of online learning resources - mostly GED focused at first - in support of year round, self-directed adult learning.  Stay tuned for more up-dates.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

RiverCross Celebration Sunday


QLNB spent a sunny, Sunday afternoon storytenting at RiverCross's Hope Mission barbeque located between Metcalf and Main streets in Saint John's Old North End.  We broke our event tent record – it was very nearly standing room only at times – at this very well attended affair.  By the end of the afternoon, we had hosted 16 adults and 48 children, totaling 64 readers.

We read books, distributed flyers and reconnected with neighbourhood friends old and new.  RiverCross has invited us back to their Hope Mission between Main and Metcalf  to help out at the corn boil this fall.


Sunday, April 19, 2015

Little KV Reads

QLNB spent a fun afternoon running a short indoor storytent as part of KV3C's very first "Little KV Reads" event.

Featuring a performance of Scotty and the Stars, this family literacy and outreach event was held in the gym of the Fairvale Elementary School.  Other activities included crafting, puppets and large and small motor play for the kids.

Modelling itself after the popular Big Rothesay Reads project - wherein a whole community joins in reading a popular novel - the Little KV Read project gave out family copies of The Little Mouse, the Red Ripe Strawberry, and the Big Hungry Bear by By Don and Audrey Wood.

KVC3's mission is to connect with parents, businesses, government  and  community partners to provide resources and support to ensure the lifelong learning of all children in the Valley.

QLNB was pleased to receive a 'thank you' gift of a number of copies of the Woods' popular book to distribute among families we work with more closely here in Saint John.  And one lucky storytent worker also received a flattering and very life-like illustration!