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First 5 Forever Online

First 5 Forever website banner image

Hello! Welcome to the Goondiwindi Regional Council’s First Five Forever page. First Five Forever connects parents and caregivers to a range of resources and ideas and to their local library for more ideas and information you can use anywhere, any time to assist with your child’s development.

We look forward to seeing you at your local library for a First 5 Forever session! So, when are these held?

The Inglewood First Five Forever is held on the 1st Wednesday of each month; and the Texas First Five Forever is held on the 3rd Thursday of each month.  Have a look below for information about sessions in the Goondiwindi Library. They are held every 2nd and 4th Thursday of each month but there are a few changes coming this year.

Outline of changes for Goondiwindi First Five Forever:

*Sing & Story Time – 2nd Thursday of each month – 10:00am – 0-5 years combined

Rhyme Time sessions are fun, high-energy opportunities to brush up on your nursery rhymes and sing and dance with your child. Learn new songs to try at home and match actions with words to help your child learn. Enjoy this special time together, meet other parents and caregivers and learn something new! After this, kick back, listen to or interact with a couple of special stories. This is a great session to pick up some ways to introduce some early literacy skills to your child.

Activity Examples:

  • Sing and dance to nursery rhymes
  • Listen to some stories
  • Learn tips and ideas to try at home
  • Meet other parents and caregivers
  • Welcoming, friendly atmosphere
  • Free

*Play Time – 4th Thursday of each month – 10:00am – 0-5years combined

Come along to participate in a variety of simple activities that can provide interactions and experiences that assist your child’s development and inspire you to re-create some of the opportunities at home.  

Some skills and benefits gained throughout activities:

  • To learn new concepts based around the monthly theme in a fun and engaging way
  • To encourage creative and critical thinking through role-play, crafts, puzzles and other games
  • To improve language, early literacy and communication skills
  • To support social and emotional development including working collaboratively, building resilience when ‘competing’ in games and taking turns
  • To enhance physical development including gross and fine motor skills
  • To enjoy some sensory experiences
  • To spend some quality time with your little one

*Online Theme

New content will be updated on the website each month

First Five Forever sessions are back up and running in all libraries across our region. As the libraries are observing the current COVID-19 spacing regulations that are keeping everyone safe, you will need to BOOK your FREE TICKETS for each session. Please see the links above for the Goondiwindi Library or call Inglewood or Texas libraries to find out more details.

If you unfortunately miss out on a spot or are unable to make it, I have put together some books, rhymes and activities online for you to explore in the comfort of your own home. Everything that you will find below is what you and your child would normally take part in if you were to attend the face-to-face session in the library.

The theme this month is ‘Firefighters – Get Down Low & Go Go Go’. Being winter, you may be fortunate enough to have a wood fire in your home to keep warm or perhaps even enjoy a fire pit or bonfire to roast some marshmallows on the weekends. It is never too early to begin developing your child’s understanding of safe fire practices and educating them on what to do if there was a fire in the home. We are lucky to have a couple of local firefighters and their firetruck to be coming along and hosting our Goondiwindi Play Time First Five Forever session on July 28th so make sure you book your FREE tickets now.

The theme this month is ‘Book Week – Dreaming with Your Eyes Open’. Book Week is a great reminder to share with your child all of the wonderful feelings that can be experienced simply through exposing your child to a variety of books. The theme this year, ‘Dreaming with Your Eyes Open’, lends itself to the concept of imagination and how by simply sharing some quality time with your child reading, can transport them to another world, inspire them to engage in creative and critical activities and expose them to early literacy skills which are all beneficial to their growth and development.

Remember that by tapping into your child’s curiosity and interests ensures they are learning as they are excited and engaged in the topic. There are many books, rhymes and creative adventures that relate to the theme that develop little brains. Some include:

  • Role-plays: Pretend to be shopkeepers, police officers, doctors or even a take it outside to be a firefighter with hoses – the list is endless.
  • Cubby Houses: Build a cubby house or reading hub in your living room with sheets or outside under the trampoline. Why not have a teddy bear’s picnic in your newly built cubby house and share some of your favourite stories?
  • Dress-ups: Dress up like pirates, fairies, monsters or a character out of their favourite book. Why not make a day of it and do some craft (perhaps making a distinguishing feature such as an eye patch for a pirate), do some cooking (some fairy cakes could be tasty) and perhaps an afternoon movie related to the theme (eg. Monsters Inc.). Remember to base it around something your child loves.
  • Magic Potions/Science Experiments: There are many safe, amazing science experiments that are found in books in the library or on the internet. Alternatively, you could simply use some soap, water, food dye and some spoons to make up your own magic potions. 
  • Crime Solving/Secret Missions/Treasure Hunts: Transform into detectives and go on a treasure hunt or follow the clues to find the treasure. You could even try to solve who stole the teddy bear’s pillow.
  • Cooking: Cooking, decorating cakes/biscuits or making an image out of fruit pieces, such as an elephant, can get the creative juices flowing and a wonderful chance to explore measurements, colours, shapes and scientific processes.

Remember there are always opportunities to discuss with your child colours, letters, numbers, animals and to provide different experiences to extend your child’s development. This can be through a simple conversation about their day and yours – it does not have to be a planned lesson with bulk resources! YOU are their best resource. Whether you are going grocery shopping, visiting the beach/pool/dam, camping, cooking or doing some gardening – there are many simple ideas/activities that can be included through reading, singing, talking or playing.

Call, Click and Collect Service: You can still ring the library and request for some books, audiobooks, DVDs or puzzles to be put aside for you.

I hope you enjoy this months books, songs and activities and I would love to see you at a session soon.

Prompting Questions/Activities

  • Can you point to where the title is?
  • What does the title tell you?
  • What can you see on the front cover?
  • Predict/guess what the story might be about. What clues helped you come up with that idea?
  • What do you think the problem may be?
  • Where do you think the story will be set/will take place?
  • What words might you find in the book?
  • What are you wondering about the book?
  • What can you see on this page?
  • What do you think is going to happen next?
  • How do you think that character is feeling right now?
  • Why do you think the character did that?
  • Would you have done the same thing?
  • What questions do you have about the story?
  • I wonder….?
  • What if…..?
  • What was your favourite character/part of the book and why?
  • Create a story map for the book.
  • Can you tell me what happened in the book? (Prompt your child so as not to miss any important parts at the beginning, middle or the end.)
  • What could happen next after the story has finished?
  • What is a different way the story could end? 
  • Why did the author write this book?
  • See if they can find a letter/sound/word in the book. Eg. Can you find the word bear on this page? Can you find 9 letter a’s on this page? 
  • How do you relate to the book? eg. Have you ever been on a bear hunt before? What other texts eg. books/movies/tv shows have you read that has similar characters/plot in it?

Rhymes Relished this session

Click on the picture below to be guided through some favourite songs and rhymes.

wiggles name image

There are many more rhymes and songs about this theme. Try searching through these platforms:

  • YouTube
  • Spotify
  • Apple Music
  • ABC App
  • The Wiggles website

Books to Enjoy

Click on the book/s to listen to the stories related to the theme. Some of these books can be accessed via the Story Box Library. If you are a library member, follow the How to Guide to assist you when logging in. You can then type in the book name in the search area. After this, sit back and enjoy the story. Others are linked to YouTube clips for educational purposes only and with the understanding that we are not the producers/authors/creators of the following clips.

Click on the image/s to read at home today or come into the library to watch on the Smart Board anytime.

Story Box Library has some of the CBCA Book Week Shortlisted Stories for you to view using your library membership.

Stellarphant by James Foley

stellarphant book cover

Walk of the Whales by Nick Bland

walk of the whales book cover

Engaging Activities

There are many activities that link to the theme ‘Book Week – Dreaming with Your Eyes Open’. The face-to-face activity at the Goondiwindi Library was making some puppets using paper bags/paper plates/socks to retell our favourite story or make up your own.

Paper Bag Puppets by Simple Everyday Mom

Click on the image below to discover some engaging activities based on this theme. 
paper bag puppet image

Children’s Book Week Activities on Pinterest

Click on the image below to discover some engaging activities based on this theme.  

paper plate fish image

Book Themed Crafts by Worth Writing For

Click on the image below to discover some engaging activities based on this theme. 

easy and fun book themed crafts for kids book cover

Benefits of these activities:

  • To encourage creative and critical thinking
  • To improve language, early literacy and communication skills. This can be done by building and introducing new context-relevant vocabulary, encouraging listening skills, introducing rhyming activities and having discussions whilst enjoying a new activity.
  • To support social and emotional development including working collaboratively
  • To enhance physical development including gross and fine motor skills when painting, drawing, dancing and cooking
  • To introduce Math, Reading and Scientific concepts (particularly when cooking)
  • To spend some quality time with your little one

Prefer hard copies or want more theme-related goodness? Don’t forget you can access or reserve these and more through Aurora or visiting your local library today!

Have a look through the below lists to find a book your child would enjoy and see if your local library has it or can order it in.

Hard Copy Resources

Bonus Info

2nd Thursday: Sing & Story Time at 10:00am (0-5yrs)

4th Thursday: Play Time at 10:00am (0-5yrs)

  • August – 11 & 25
  • September – 8 & 22

Book your FREE tickets to either Sing & Story Time (0-5yrs) or Play Time (0-5yrs) by clicking the link below and selecting the session and date you wish to attend.

Goondiwindi First Five Forever Tickets (0-5 yrs) 

1st Wednesday of every month @ 10:30am

Ring or email Inglewood Library today to book your spot

  • August 3
  • September 7

 

3rd Thursday of every month @ 10:30am

Ring or email Texas Library today to book your spot

  • July 21
  • August 18
  • September 15

Parent Tip: Shared activities at home and out and about in the early years are important in the development of language skills later on, and research highlights the significant role that parents play in helping their babies build a strong foundation for future learning (State Library Queensland. (2022). First Five Forever. State Library of Queensland. Retrieved July 15th, 2022, from https://plconnect.slq.qld.gov.au/programs-grants/first-5-forever )

Click on the image below to find out more about First Five Forever and tune in every Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 10am for story time.

first 5 forever logo in colour