Supporting Literacy at Home

For parents, guardians and family members with young children learning to read, and with older children who are struggling
Posted on 01 March 2024 by Chris Brown.

Medicine Hat Public Library is all about any chance there is to improve literacy and learning in the community, and so we jumped at the chance to host an expert in the field.

Next week at the library, Marnie Heintz, an instructional coach at Medicine Hat Public School Division, will lead an informational session called Supporting Literacy at Home. The session, on Thursday, March 7, from 6-7 p.m. in the Honor Currie Room, will focus on sharing current, research-based best practices in literacy instruction to empower parents to support their children to read and spell proficiently. No pre-registration is required.

Heintz breaks down who could be interested in attending: 

• Parents/guardians/family members of preschool aged children who would like to learn ways to support their child as their language and literacy skills are developing

• Parents/guardians/family members of children in Kindergarten-grade 3 who are learning to read and spell

• Parents/guardians/family members of children in grades 4 and above who have difficulties with reading and spelling

• Teachers and service providers interested in learning more

She says participants can leave with quick, easy, and fun ways to improve children’s literacy at home in five key areas, tips to making reading and writing at home enjoyable and easy to incorporate into busy lives, and links and recommendations for further support.

They can also gain a greater understanding of resources and strategies that teachers are using in their classrooms and why; a brief, simplified understanding of how the brain learns to read and spell; and why many children and adults find reading and spelling challenging. 


Marnie Heintz has worked as an instructional coach for Medicine Hat Public School Division for the past 7 years. Prior to her current role, she taught grades 7-11 Humanities, mostly to students with a variety of learning differences. Marnie has a deep understanding of, and a passion for, the Science of Reading. She has completed Units 1-8 of LETRS training (Moats & Tolman), Orton Gillingham Training (IMSE), Overcoming Dyslexia (Shaywitz), and recently completed a Master's in Education in Literacy. As an instructional coach she supports teachers in their classrooms as well as in their professional learning. She has a specialization in Special Education and has always felt driven to support students who find difficulties in regular classroom environments. She is kept busy at home with her own three children and their sports and passions.

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