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Portland Celebrates its Youngest Learners

Portland area families will take part in the annual “Week of the Young Child”, a national celebration that focuses public attention on the development of young children and the needs of their families. The celebration will be marked by a parade and School Readiness Festival on April 22nd.  This year’s theme is “School Readiness Begins at Birth”. 
The years from birth to 8 are crucial for shaping a child’s learning and development, according to the National Association for the Education of Young Children.  During this time, the foundation for a child’s success in school and later life is set.
“This is a time to recognize that creating opportunity for children in Portland is a community responsibility.  And, to recommit ourselves to ensuring that each and every child experiences an environment—at home, at child care, at school, and in the neighborhood—that will promote their early learning”, said Katie Camplin, Project Director, Starting Strong.
The Week of the Young Child kicks off Saturday, April 22nd at the East End Beach parking lot at 10:00 a.m. with a parade.  Children and families can dress in costume as they march, stroll and ride down the Eastern Promenade to the East End Community School at 195 North Street.  At the school, there will be music by Matt Loosigian from Music Together, games and activities for children and informational booths from several local health and education services.  “It’s important to take the time to reflect and value the importance of children’s early years as learning years”, said Lori Moses, Executive Director, Catherine Morrill Day Nursery.