PENDLETON - A literacy workshop "Happily Ever After, raising a reader," will be held from 6-7 p.m. Thursday at the Pendleton Library Community Room.

The interactive workshop is free and open to parents and caregivers of children ages birth to 5 years.

"When parents hold their child and read to him, the emotional closeness and language experiences they provide are an important foundation in preparing them to learn when they are old enough for school," said Chris Hilderbrand, director of Take Off, an early childhood literacy outreach program for Umatilla County Special Library District. "All this is not complicated. Get them ready now ... and they will read later with much greater ease and success."

The workshop will provide examples of books, songs, games and rhymes to share with babies, toddlers and preschool children. Parents and caregivers will be given a free book to take home to share with their child. Refreshments will be available and door prizes given.

Early literacy refers to language skills children acquire during their first five years, prior to learning to read.

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