About Zoom Ahead with Books

The Zoom Ahead with Books project is designed to encourage parental involvement and promote children's enjoyment and motivation to read for pleasure.

Each year almost 1000 children and families from 12 local primary schools and services take part, and this project is one of the highlights of the ELI calendar.

One of the key objectives of ELI is to support the literacy development of the children in the Docklands. Through its focus on creative expression, the Zoom Ahead project is accessible to all parents in the community regardless of their literacy levels. This year, we are delighted to also be able to share the resources for parents in English, as well as three further languages are commonly spoken in our community - Polish, Mandarin and Romanian. See the links at the end of the page to these resources.

Each night over the three week programme the children take home a book from the class library, sit, read and discuss the book with their 'book buddy' and then both draw a picture representing the book.

The project finishes with a series of exhibitions of the artwork from the children and book buddies in the schools and NCI, which serves as a celebration of the commitment and effort of all of the families.


Contact us:

If you would like further information on the Zoom Ahead with Books project, please contact Cathy Steenson (086) 4666441 or Cathy.Steenson@ncirl.ie

Zoom Ahead with Books-Virtual Book Club

About the Programme

Zoom Ahead with Books - Virtual Book Club is a programme on our social media platforms, dedicated to families with children aged between 3 and 8 years old who live in Dublin.

Zoom Ahead with Books aims to encourage and promote children’s enjoyment of books, their motivation to read for pleasure and to improve their overall literacy skills. While volunteers could not visit services in their role as book buddy due to COVID-19 considerations, ELI came up with the idea to set up a Virtual Book Club, on the ELI’s social media platforms, to continue promoting books and reading across the community and to support children’s literacy development. 

As the virtual club had a very good response, we have decided to continue this adventure post-COVID-19 too. 

Storytelling promotes language and literacy and helps children to develop the confidence and the skills required for reading, so…..“Let’s inspire young minds, one page at a time!”

Follow us to take part:

• Facebook @earlylearningnitiative  

• Instagram @earlylearninginitiative

• YouTube @earlylearninginitiative8076 

About the Zoom Ahead with Books Virtual Book Club

• Starting in October, once a month, we will post a book giveaway on the Early Learning Initiative Facebook and Instagram page. You will then have to like the post and comment ‘Why would you like your child to receive the book’.

• Your child will receive a Zoom Ahead with Books pack by post containing a book to read, some activity ideas and a guide sheet.

• You are encouraged to sit with your child and read the story together or listen to your child reading or looking at the pictures. You can then talk about the story together and then both draw a picture of your favourite part of the story or complete some of the suggested activities.

• Send a photograph of your pictures to the Early Learning Initiative either in a message on Facebook, Instagram or WhatsApp. We would love to see your wonderful pictures.

• At the end of the academic year, in June, we will gather all the artwork and celebrate with an exhibition at the National College of Ireland.

Contact us:

If you would like further information on Zoom Ahead with Books Virtual Book Club, please contact Ramona Mihalka  (086) 7965548 or Ramona.Mihalka@ncirl.ie