It has been said that children need to hear a thousand stories before they can learn to read, and that is exactly what the Story Box Library hopes to help achieve.
The streaming service puts the best Australian story books in the hands of the best Australian story tellers, and beams it straight into your home, school or library.
The Story Box Library is as extensive as it is diverse, currently boasting 153 books, read by 86 different storytellers ranging from musician Nick Cave to comedian Cal Wilson, AFL player Colin Garland to newsreader Peter Hitchener and everyone in between, including an entire section of indigenous books and storytellers.
Father of three, and Timbumburi Primary teacher Phillip Mattheus said that while “developing a love for reading is the most important aspect of early education and development, picture books need to be read aloud”, and Story Box ticks all the boxes.
It’s on a screen, because kids love technology, but it is also a book – it is a great way to get them interested in books, in a subject, or in a lesson,” Mr Mattheus said.
“Pictures tell half the story, so it is also a great way to teach parents how to read out loud to their children as well, do the right actions and facial expressions – it is like a demonstration of how to read as well as a great way to further develop a love of books.
“There is no greater bonding or educational tool.”
Tamworth Customer Experience Librarian Narelle Lightfoot echoed those sentiments, adding that the service also includes interviews with authors and can also make libraries a part of every child’s every day life.
“Anything that encourages reading, keeps literature interesting and helps develop a love for literature is fantastic, and Story Box is another way to encourage that,” Mrs Lightfoot said.
“It can also make kids familiar with libraries and the services that are on offer – that way when they go to high school or a different school it would be perfectly normal for them to go in and use the library whenever they like.”
While Story Box can be accessed for free by anyone with a Tamworth Library card, a subscription can also be purchased at any time for either $40 a year or $5 a month for those who are not library members.