For five weeks, HeadStart Brunswick preschool students arrived at school every Monday with great anticipation of the gift that awaited them.
More than 150 students received their own “Take 5” bag each week, which included books, toys and information for their parents on how to participate in learning activities.
“They all come in, ‘Ms. Reed, where’s my bag? What color is it this week? They want to know what color, what’s in it,” said Sonja Reed, center supervisor for Glynn HeadStart.
This is the third year that the Take 5 program has sparked this kind of book craze among local preschoolers. The program began as a pilot at FACES Preschool in 2020 and expanded the following year to all preschoolers in Glynn County schools.
Each week, books and activities promote different types of learning. The bags also include QR codes allowing parents to access more online resources.
Parents also gave feedback on the program, Reed said, and many were happy to have a new way of reading with their children.
“Parents say it gives them a way to interact with them more with books,” she said. “When you get a book, it’s like you’ve just read it. But they like that it gives them the activities and the different things that they can do with their kids with those books and activities in there. We’re getting really good responses from parents with that.
The Take 5 program is a collaboration between Marshes of Glynn Libraries, Glynn County Schools and other local entities.
Grants and donations have supported the program, which is free for families.
The tote bags and the treasures they contain have brought a lot of joy to HeadStart students this year, Reed said.
“One parent said their child liked it and responded very well to the book and the activities,” she said. “Now she looks every week, she’s like, ‘Where’s my bag?'”