Premiers’ Reading Challenge & Jimmy Giggle

The Member for Melton, Don Nardella MLA today said parents and carers who sign up to the challenge of reading to their children every day could win a visit from ABC Kids’ Jimmy Giggle for their local kinder or childcare centre.

Mr Nardella said:

Marking the kick-off of the Premiers’ Reading Challenge for the Early Years in Melton & Moorabool  puts the spotlight on the significant benefits children under five receive from being read to regularly by their parents and carers.

How often a child is read to has a direct link to greater success at school, regardless of their family background or home environment. Recently, the Early Language in Victoria Study, a joint research project involving the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute and a number of Australian universities, found that reading aloud to children from a young age results in higher rates of literacy, and better spelling and cognitive skills

The Premiers’ Reading Challenge has been on book lovers’ calendars since 2005, with more than two million Victorian children reading more than 38 million books so far.

The Early Years challenge is to draw attention to the rich benefits of reading to children from the day they’re brought home from the hospital.

Parents, grandparents, carers, childcare centres and kindergartens can take on the challenge of reading to their kids for an opportunity to win story time with Jimmy Giggle from ABC Kids’ Giggle and Hoot.

Jimmy will visit two lucky winners at their childcare centre or kindergarten. There are also book packs from Penguin Random House Australia to be won.

To join the challenge or to find out more, please visit:

Mr Nardella further said:

Reading to young children gives them a real leg-up: improving school outcomes, sparking creativity, instilling a lifelong love of reading and opening up whole worlds with every new book.

It’s never too early to start reading to your children. I encourage all parents and carers to sign on to the Premiers’ Early Years Reading Challenge and read to their young children every day.

Early childhood reading facts:

  • Children who were read to regularly and who had lots of books in their homes at 4 years of age did better in their first years of school.
  • Children who had good letter knowledge and better expressive language skills at 4 years also did better in their first years of school, particularly spelling.
  • Reading to children 3-5 days per week has the same effect on the child’s reading skills at age 4-5 as being 6 months older.