Little Red Reader Bookshelf Available to Families  at Ste. Genevieve Health Department

Ste. Genevieve County Parents as Teachers have teamed up with Early Childhood Community Leaders to install a new Little Red Reader Bookshelf at the Ste. Genevieve County Health Department! This bookshelf is located in the waiting area of the Health Department and is stocked with children’s books for all ages. These books are free for families to take home with them, and will be restocked through donations handled through Parents as Teachers. Educational resources for families as well as information about Parents as Teachers is also located on the shelf.

“A parent is a child’s first educator, and offering families books and knowledge about the benefits of reading is one way that we can support them in preparing their children for school,” Parents as Teachers Coordinator Bethany Koetting said. “Our hope is that this bookshelf provides information on the value of reading and encourages literary activities without any worry about cost. We want our families to know that the Parents as Teachers program is here to support them and can offer additional resources to assist in their child’s early learning.”

The bookshelf was built and donated by the Early Childhood Community Leaders for our Southeast region. This group provides resources in designated areas around Missouri with a focus on supporting families with children from birth to age five. Community leaders are located throughout the state to improve access for Missouri families and children. The Southeast Region oversees Ste. Genevieve County, Iron County, Madison County and St. Francois County, among others.

Kimberly Weakley, an Early Childhood Community Leader, shared that the organization’s biggest initiative is to collaborate with groups in these counties to ensure families have the knowledge and resources to make informed decisions about the safety, health and education of their children. Through a survey conducted a few years ago, early literacy was identified as an area in need of support. The goal is to create and donate eight of these bookshelves throughout surrounding counties, and the Early Childhood Community Leaders welcome anyone interested in becoming a sponsor. If you are interested in supporting this growing program in our area and surrounding counties, you can reach out to Kimberly Weakley at (573) 431-3173 or (573) 747-6010.

Parents as Teachers (PAT) is an international early childhood parent education and family support program, serving families from pregnancy through preschool/kindergarten entry. The program is designed to enhance child development and school achievement through parent education accessible to all families. It is a national model, but a local program. Family participation is free and voluntary.

Free Developmental Screenings

Parents as Teachers offers FREE Community Developmental Screenings year-round for all children within district boundaries ages 3 months to 5 years. Screening is the process of measuring a child's general health, vision, hearing and development. The areas of development focused on during this screening are motor, language, concepts, social/emotional, and adaptive. This will be an opportunity to learn more about how your child is meeting developmental milestones and ways you may improve their potential for learning. To schedule a screening, call PAT at 573-883-4500 ext. 2424.