Born Learning Trail offers new resource for families

·2 min read

Sep. 19—Marshes of Glynn Libraries and the United Way of Coastal Georgia partnered Thursday to open a Born Learning Trail at the Brunswick library.

Born Learning Trails help parents, grandparents and caregivers explore ways to turn everyday moments into fun learning opportunities.

The ribbon cutting was followed by story time for children. The event was also a part of United Way's week-long campaign kickoff for its annual fundraiser, which aims to raise $850,000 by February 2023.

Money raised by the campaign will remain local and will go toward organizations and initiatives that serve the community, like a Born Learning Trail.

"We know that those critical early learning skills, learning to walk and talk, beginning to think independently, understanding how to communicate, and learning to control impulses and emotions, build the foundation for children to enter school ready to learn," said Justin Callaway, president and CEO of United Way. "It impacts not just how well children learn and socially interact in kindergarten, but also whether they read well by third grade, succeed in eighth grade and ultimately graduate from high school."

Geri Mullis, executive director of Marshes of Glynn Libraries, said learning to read begins at birth, and the library aims to support families as they teach their children.

"Hearing words through talking, singing, and play help children recognize vocabulary prior to ever seeing it in text. Combining these activities with print material create the neurological pathways necessary to learn to read," she said. "We are excited to have the mobile Born Learning Trail from United Way of Coastal Georgia as a fun tool at the libraries to help parents and caregivers prepare their young children to be readers."

Organizations at the trail's opening included Marshes of Glynn Libraries staff, United Way staff, Family Connection of Glynn and Ferst Readers.

"Brain development and meeting key milestones can play a huge role in a child being ready to thrive in Kindergarten and beyond," said Keith Fenton, board chair for Family Connection of Glynn. "One of the most important ways parents can support their child is by being their first and best teacher. Simple activities like reading, singing and talking with children early and often are great places to start."