We’ve had really positive feedback from parents following the gifting event. One parent told us that she and her daughter enjoy singing the songs and rhymes at home. They now take turns to tell the story, which has made reading at home more fun.
Gifting the Bookbug Explorer Bag provides an excellent opportunity to celebrate books and talk to parents about the benefits of sharing stories, songs and rhymes with their children at home. However, we understand that holding a gifting event in a mixed setting can be tricky when only the 3-year-old children are receiving a bag.
Below are a few handy hints and tips for gifting in a mixed setting.
Involve the preschool children in gifting the bags
Involve the older children in the gifting of the bags, explain to them that they received their bags last year and this year they get the special job of sharing the new bags with their friends of a younger age. If you took photos of them with their bags last year, why not show them the photos and talk about the books from their bag? If you have a set of the books, why not read them again?
Hold a song and rhyme event with Explorer games and activities
Involve all your children in a fun song and rhyme event, which links into the Explorer themes of the bags. You could:
- Invite parents in for stay and play
- Go on an adventure walk
- Plan a treasure hunt
Both year groups can be involved in the fun of the day before gifting the bags to the 3-year-old children.
Gift a book to 4 year olds
Gift a pre-loved book to the older children during your celebratory event. Your local community may be able to help you by donating good quality second-hand books or speak to your local library who may have books they no longer use to gift.
Gift at the local library
By taking the gifting event to the library, you can gift the Explorer bags to your 3-year -olds and borrow books to share with your other children. This way everyone comes back to the setting with something special.
Hold a Bookbug Session at the library for 4 year olds
Give the 4 year olds a special treat by taking them to the library for a Bookbug Session, where they can also borrow a book, while you gift the Explorer Bags to 3 year olds at your setting.
Tie in with P1 Transition visits
If you’d rather not have the 4-year-old children present during the gifting you could plan your gifting event to coincide with P1 transition.
If gifting as a group in an event is not possible, here are some ways to give the bags in a special, individual, way:
- Gifting on their birthday as a birthday present
- Gifting as part of a home visit (if they receive them)
- If it is a child who is starting nursery aged 3, gifting to them as part of their registration or enrolment process
- Depending on how you are set up, gifting to the child when they move rooms.
Explorer Bag Gifting Case Study
Nikki Glass, Easter Carmuirs Nursery, Falkirk
We started offering regular weekly Bookbug Sessions to families as part of our plan to improve parental engagement. Our Explorer Bag gifting event took place during one of our Bookbug Sessions. We built up the excitement with children and families by letting them know that they would be getting a special gift from Bookbug. The children were also involved in planning the event and baking tasty treats for their guests.
As we have a large number of children, we ran two gifting events to ensure that there was space for everyone to join in. Before gifting the bags, we sang some of the children’s favourite songs and then read one of the books from the Explorer Bag. After our story, we brought out a basket of Bookbug Explorer Bags and showed everyone what’s included in the bag and talked a little bit about each item to encourage families to use them at home. Children were then called up one by one to get their bag. They were so excited, and rushed back over to their parent or grandparents to show them what was inside.
So that our pre-schoolers felt involved too, we managed to source some picture books to gift to each of them. It was fantastic to watch all the children looking at their bags or books and many parents and grandparents started to read the stories with their children. We’ve had really positive feedback from parents following the event. One parent told us that she and her daughter enjoy singing the songs and rhymes at home. They now take turns to tell the story, which has made reading at home more fun.