What is PLAYtime?

PLAYtime Uses the arts as a vehicle to make a meaningful connection with the stories from Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library with, in, and through the use of song, drama, movement, and visual arts, stories come alive and create purposeful shared reading experiences.  

Inspiration & Imagination are the recurring themes throughout the 3 year cycle of PLAYtime and include:

  • love of reading and learning
  • regard for diversity of people, their roles, culture, and environment
  • promotion of self-esteem and confidence
  • appreciation of art and aesthetics as outlined by the Imagination Library
  • Rhyme and rhythm
  • Repetition and predictability
  • Playful sound
  • “Self-help” activities
  • Use of real photo illustration
  • Nursery rhymes
  • Colors, letters, numbers
  • Values and character
  • Issues—fear, conflict, love, safety     
  • Hero, complication, resolution
  • Diversity of others—faces, environment
  • Play, humor, fun
  • Poetry     
  • School preparation and readiness
  • Science—non-fiction
  • Folk tales
  • Thank you, appreciation

PLAYtime! A Literacy Journey Through the “Art” of a Good Story

John Hutton

Featuring Guest Speaker: Dr. John S. Hutton, MD MS

Our PLAYtime program is thrilled to be hosting a special 2-day event with Dr. Hutton, pediatrician, clinical researcher, and children's book author. 

On Monday, Nov. 4, our PLAYtime event will kick off with a reception and opening remarks by Dr. Hutton. On Tuesday, Nov. 5, Dr. Hutton will present on how reading to children affects development and literacy skills, and his exciting new ideas for further research. In addition, PLAYtime facilitator Trisha Yates will present great tips and tools for creating that perfect “shared” reading experience. Each participant will leave with a bag full of materials to add to their story time box of tricks!

This event is completely FREE to attendees. Pediatricians, medical professionals who work with children, educators, elementary education majors, parents, librarians, and anyone who spends story time with a child are encouraged to attend. Along with this fun-filled informative workshop, those in attendance will receive a continental breakfast, snacks and beverages throughout the event, an opportunity to purchase the guest speaker’s books, and a bag full of free materials to use for story time in your own settings. In addition, PDE credits and CME hours will be available at no cost.

Download the PDF below for additional information and enrollment form.

The PLAYtime Journey

For 4 years, The Erie Playhouse, with the support of the United Way, has grown this literacy program and is now present in 20 children centers and school classrooms supporting literacy through PLAYtime in our hometown. Over the course of 3 years, the same child will have spent 144 shared reading experiences with the Imagination Library stories using PLAYtime curriculum lessons. In the past 4 years over 2,000 children in at-risk settings will have been nurtured by PLAYtime, listening, attending, questioning, and retelling these tales at an increase success rate of 95%. Teachers and facilitators have grown in their storytelling connections by participating in PLAYtime as well.   

Workshops for parents and children of the program increase reading at home. And on stage, The Erie Playhouse welcomes PLAYtime as they present shows based on the Imagination Library completely free to the community followed by fun activities to engage the whole family!  

In addition, facilitators of PLAYtime immerse themselves as partners in the schools and children centers they are connected to, guest appearing at their family game nights, carnivals, red carpet events, and even facilitating at graduations!  

PLAYtime is committed to the community creating a truly meaningful relationship with its families.

Download additional information:

Kate Kids