Dad Brandon Byers and his son Parker hung out at Kootenay Family Place Neighbourhood House on Saturday

Dad Brandon Byers and his son Parker hung out at Kootenay Family Place Neighbourhood House on Saturday

Opportunity calling all dads with tots

Kootenay Family Place is offering an opportunity for dads to spend more time with their kids, while helping them develop literacy skills.

Kootenay Family Place is offering an opportunity for dads to spend more time with their kids, while helping them develop literacy skills.

The Love 2 Learn early learning literacy group invites children who are zero to six years old and their dads to share breakfast and learn together on Saturday mornings, 9:30 to 11:30 a.m., at Kootenay Family Place (KFP) Neighbourhood House.

“We’re trying to get dads to get together with their kids and do things. Usually, we have a craft and story time and some songs,” explains Jason Warman, who leads the group. “We make a breakfast for everybody and they can all sit down … and eat.”

The meals are prepared by Celina French, a casual at KFP who also runs her own food truck.

“The kids seem to love to do waffles and french toast, stuff they can put their own whipping cream and fruit on,” she says.

French has also started writing down the recipes so the dads can try making them at home.

The group also offers dads the chance to compare notes and engage with their children.

“If you’re a dad and you’re not connected to anything socially, you might not always know what to do with your kids, where to go and how to engage them and things like that,” explains Warman. “So providing an environment like this, allows them to just come here and then they get engaged, rather than trying to figure it out on their own.”

And of course, the program encourages family literacy.

“We have a Love 2 Learn curriculum that we’re integrating into the program at the same time,” says Warman. “So the idea is we do a craft that’s associated with a story and then songs. The idea is to develop literacy and promote it in early learning. Kids start learning how to read and things like that very early on, and [we’re] trying to promote it within the family as well, so kids are getting a really solid basis on learning before they hit school.”

Over a dozen dads and their kids have attended at least once, and while most of the kids are under four years old, kids as old as seven have attended as well.

The group is running until May. Anyone interested in attending can contact Lynnene Lewis at lynnene@kootenayfamilyplace.org or 778-460-5105.