Set in a yurt surrounded by trees and vegetables, “Read and Play” is a storytelling workshop for children in Somers Town, supported by the We Make Camden Kit. Each week, a different book is selected and read in the most engaging way – the children act out parts, learn to empathise with characters and truly experience the story. Each book is carefully selected by the founder, Salina Khatun and each workshop will be entirely different from the previous.
Salina, a former full time primary school teacher, found herself becoming more embedded within her community after becoming a mother. “Living around here, having my 3rd child now, I realised how much is needed, particularly for specific demographics in this area”, she explains. To make a change, she wanted to start with what she believes to be the core of success – education; and the first thing to tackle is literacy. This is how “Read and Play” was born.
Carefully curated to stimulate, this programme brought stories into the lives of children over the age of 4, who don’t necessarily have books in their home. These stories went beyond teaching literacy. Salina expands, “I want to address issues of sustainability and diversity over storytelling – children expressing their emotions through storytelling”. She wanted to also ensure that passion was created, and that morals and values of bringing communities together were shared.