Early Literacy

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Recent studies in brain development are showing that even newborns benefit from the earliest steps toward literacy. Parents of newborns, toddlers and preschoolers have an important role in preparing children for literacy. The resources gathered here will get you started in understanding and developing the reading potential of the children in your life. However, other studies show that the social programs with the strongest evidence of positive long-term impact, including high-quality preschool programs, take place after children are three years old.


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Early Development and Learning

j372.6 W556d by the Staff of Between the Lions

What does a lion say? and other playful language games

"With on-the-go games that are perfect for busy lifestyles, this book is filled with fun and easy literacy games for you to play with your children any time, anywhere"--p.4, cover. 2010

372.452 J984e by Justice, Laura M. and Sofka, Amy E.

Engaging children with print: building early literacy skills through quality read-alouds

Presents research based techniques to build childrens knowledge of print. 2010

155.4 H438g Herschkowitz, Norbert

A Good Start in Life: Understanding Your Child's Brain and Behavior

Authors use fictitious children of differing temperaments,as these children relate to their parents and one another, their activities at developmental milestones are described. A question-and-answer section closes each chapter. 2002

155.418 EL52p Elkind, David

The Power of Play: How Spontaneous, Imaginative Activities Lead to Happier, Healthier Children

Explains how important, unstructured play is too often replaced in modern times by organized activities, academics or passive leisure activities. Elkind explains how even toys have changed. Acknowledges that technology has its place in the classroom, but debunks computer programs marketed toward babies and preschoolers whose young brains are not yet able to fully comprehend two-dimensional representations. 2007

305.231 H615e Hirsh-Pasek, Kathy

Einstein Never Used Flash Cards: How Our Children Really Learn and Why They Need to Play More and Memorize Less

Shows why, and how, to step away from the cult of achievement and toward a more nurturing home life full of imaginative play and love of learning. The early years are learning years, just what that means can be confusing. Ms. Hirsh-Pasek makes practical sense of the vast number of technical studies and advertising claims. It explains in clear, compelling, and scientific terms how learning really takes place. 2003

362.712 P845t Post, Jacalyn

Tender Care and Early Learning: Supporting Infant and Toddlers in Childcare Settings

Reinforces what is known about infants and toddlers in group care settings. It explains the High Scope Approach in an infant and toddler setting with its focus on Active Learning, Supportive Adult-Child Relationships and Arranging and Organizing the Environment. A resource for those interested in starting/setting up an infant or toddler classroom. 2000

372.41 F954L Fuhler, Carol J.

Literature is Back: Using the Best Books

Organized by genre (picture books, traditional literature, modern fantasy, historical fiction, realistic fiction, poetry, and nonfiction), this book places quality children's literature at the heart of literacy teaching. The authors define each genre and its values for use with students; identify exemplary texts; and provide practical, engaging research-based lessons that teach specific literacy strategies and skills to both primary and intermediate grade students. For use with Grades 1–5. 2007

372.416 G289b Gentry,Richard J.

Breakthrough in Beginning Reading and Writing: The Evidence Based Approach

Drawing on major new insights in brain research, Gentry shows how reading and writing develop in five phases, from operations with no letter knowledge to understanding of phonics chunks. The book enables teachers to identify a child's phase of development, set reasonable expectations for growth, and select the methods that will move each child forward. For use with Grades PreK–3. 2007

401.93 H251m Hart, Betty

Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experience of Young American Children

Describes the parent-child interactions during the years of language acquisition, revealing differences in the experiences of one- and two-year-olds from families across a spectrum of socioeconomic status. The authors show how the amount of time parents spend talking to their children in the early years of life directly influences children's future accomplishments. 1995

428.4071 H615k Hirsch, E. D.

The Knowledge Deficit: Closing the Shocking Education Gap for American Children.

Includes chapters on the origins of the knowledge deficit; knowledge of language and of things; using school time productively; using tests productively; achieving commonality and fairness. 2006

428.40712 T189t Tatum, Alfred W.

Teaching Reading to Black Adolescent Males:Closing the Achievement Gap

Discussion of the turmoil and the promise of reading; black males and the reading achievement gap; reconceptualizing the role of literacy instruction; structuring curriculum to empower students; a culturally responsive approach to literacy teaching. 2005

649.1 B739i Brazelton, T. Berry, et. al.

The Irreducible Needs of Children: What Every Child Must have to Grow, Learn, and Flourish

The two childcare experts share the conviction that society is not currently meeting the basic needs of children. Each chapter is devoted to the discussion of an "irreducible" need, such as the Need for Ongoing Nurturing Relationships, the Need for Physical Protection, Safety and Regulation, the Need for Stable Supportive Communities and Cultural Continuity, and the Need to Protect the Future. After each discussion, the authors recommend ways to meet these needs. 2000

649.1 ScL11e Scalafani, Joseph D.

The Educated Parent: Recent Trends in Raising Children

Compares popular beliefs to actual research results to show how parenting behaviors influence child outcomes and offers practical advice on how to be sensitive to a child's needs while dealing with everyday challenges.2004

j649.122 Si32g Silberg, Jackie

Go Anywhere Games for Babies: The Packable, Portable Bok of Infant Development and Bonding

Babies go everywhere busy moms and dads go. Here's a fantastic collection of developmental baby games to go with them to a doctor's waiting room, on a bus, to the beach, or right at home! The games are organized by age, and each one helps your baby develop an important skill.2000

j649.122 Si32o Silberg, Jackie

125 Brain Games for Babies: Simple Games to Promote Early Brain Development

Create the brain connections needed for future learning, all while having fun! "125 Brain Games for Babies" is packed with everyday games, songs, and other opportunities to contribute to the brain development of children from birth through 12 months.1999

649.123 B795f Brott, Armin

Fathering Your School-age Child: A Dad's Guide to the Wonder Years

Chapters include: Fathering your 3-year-old: bye, bye, baby; Fathering your 4-year-old: enough about you,let's talk about meeee!; Fathering your 5-year-old: ready, set, learn; Fathering your 6-year-old: your amazing, stretching child; Fathering your 7-year-old: the thinker; Fathering your 8-year-old: energy to burn; Fathering your 9-year-old: just like a real person, only shorter.2007

j649.5 Si39o Silberg, Jackie

125 games for toddlers and twos : simple games to promote early brain development

Packed with easy-to-play games based on the latest brain research!

A young child's brain grows at a phenomenal rate in the first years of life, opening a window of opportunity for learning that occurs only once in a lifetime. 125 Brain Games for Toddlers and Twos is a fun-filled collection of ways to lay the groundwork for your child's future. It is packed with everyday opportunities to contribute to brain development during the critical period from 12-36 months. Each game is accompanied by information on related brain research and a description of how the activity promotes brain power in your child.2000

How Children Become Readers

j372.465 F333i Feldman, Jean and Karapetkova, Holly

I love letters: more than 200 quick & easy activities to introduce young children to letters and literacy

Includes such chapters as Print knowledge: creating a print-rich environment, Feel! taste! touch!: multi-sensory materials to activate senses and engage children in hands-on learning, and Write on!: pre-writing experiences to get children ready to write. 2009

371.392 L437m Lawrence, Lynn

Montessori Read and Write: A Parents' Guide to Literacy for Children

Lawrence, a leading Montessori practitioner, shows how to teach children to read and write using the famous Montessori system. Many age-specific activities and games to make learning fun. Covers first steps such as recognizing letters, sounds, and shapes through vocabulary-building and spelling competence to full reading fluency and creative writing skills. Includes a list of books that you and your child can enjoy reading together. 1999

612.82 EL44wEliot, Lise

What's Going On In There: How the Brain & Mind Develop in the First 5 Years of Life

Blending cutting-edge science with a mother's wisdom and insight, the author contributes to the nature versus nurture debate. Children's development is determined both by the genes they are born with and the richness of their early environment. This book shows parents the innumerable ways in which they can actually help their children grow better brains. 1999

649.1 Sh78hy Shore, Penny A.

How Your Baby & Child Learns: From newborn to Age 3

Written by parenting experts, this work explores a baby's learning stages and provides parents with easy-to-read tips and techniques for guiding their child's early development, 2002.

649.1 Sh78w Shore, Rima

What Kids Need: Today's Best ideas for Nurturing, Teaching, and Protecting Young Children.

Drawing on a decade of research on children up to the age of ten by top experts, challenges the belief that early risk factors and problems severely constrain a child's life chances. This book explores effective parenting techniques and social supports that really work. 2002

649.122 St23b Stamm, Jill

Bright from the Start: the Simple, Science-backed Way to Nurture Your Child's Developing Mind

Five ways every parent should know: A is for attention, why it matters; Face time, you are your baby's first toy; B is for bonding,why it matters and tuning in to one another; C is for communication, why it matters, everyday talk, and thank goodness its cheap. 2007

Tips for Raising a Reader

jR011.62 K198b Keane, Nancy J.

Big Book Of Children's Reading Lists: 100 Great, ready-to-use book lists for educators, librarians, and parents

Looking for folktales from China? An informational children's book? A list of books on the topic of compassion? A sampling of ABC books? These lists and more can be found in this treasury of "great reading lists" for children. This versatile guide provides reproducible book lists based on the most common

needs of those who have or work with young readers. 2006

011.62 H351c Hearne, Betsy

Choosing Books for Children: A Commonsense Guide

A classic guide to children's literature and its uses. Includes annotated lists of recommended titles. 1999

j028.16 Od2g Odean, Kathleen

Great Books for Babies and Toddlers: More than 500 Recommended Books for your Child's First Three Years.

An annotated guide to picture-story books, fairy tales, rhyme, fingerplay and song books, 2003.

028.7 B443t Benson-Castagna, Vicki

Teaching the Information Generation

With technology, today's youngest students have a world of information at their fingertips. This book gives K–3 teachers easy-to-implement cognitive strategies for developing skills, such as identifying facts and interpreting facts, making connections to facts, and building knowledge. The author demonstrates how to model strategies and help students apply them. For use with Grades K–3, 2007.

372.218 W556 Hirsch, E. D.

What Your Kindergärtner Needs to Know: Preparing a kindergärtner for a lifetime of learning

Based on E.D. Hirsch's realization that much of the decline in America's educational standards has occurred because vague "skills," not information, are taught in the primary grades, it emphasizes fundamental knowledge in math, science, art, history, language arts, geography, and technology. E.D. Hirsch and the staff of the Core Knowledge Foundation worked with more than two thousand parents and teachers to create a book that children will enjoy while they learn. 1997

372.21 En19 Charner, Murphy, and Clark, Editors

The Encyclopedia of Infant & Toddler Activities: for Children Birth to Three

Written by teachers of early childhood education. Activity programs and infant recreation, 2006.

j372.4 B493b Bennett-Armistead, V. Susan

Beyond Bedtime Stories: A Parent's Guide to Promoting Reading, Writing and Other Literacy Skills from Birth to 5

While most parents understand the importance of promoting literacy in their young children, they often aren't sure how to do it. This book provides guidance. Taking a ""literacy-throughout-the-day"" approach, the authors organize the book around spaces in the home-the kitchen, bedroom, living room, and so forth-and suggest fun, stimulating activities for building children's reading, writing, listening, and speaking skills in those spaces. Filled with tips, photos, milestones to watch for, and great ideas to try today, Beyond Bedtime Stories is essential reading, 2007.

j372.4 D38r Straub, Susan and KJ Dell'Antonia

Reading with Babies, Toddlers and Twos: A Guide to Choosing, Reading and Loving Books Together

Research shows that the number of different words a baby hears each day is the single most important predictor of later intelligence, school success and social competence. But what exactly should you read when?

- What do you buy after you've bought Goodnight Moon? - Why should you read to a baby who can't even sit? - How are you going to read to a baby who just found his feet--and won't stop trying them out? - How often should you read to your baby to make sure she's ready for preschool?

Whether you're a new parent or grandparent, sibling or friend, aunt or uncle, Reading with Babies, Toddlers and Twos is the definitive guide to choosing, reading and loving books together.2006

372.4 M179g McGuinness, Diane

Growing a Reader: Your Child's Path from Language to Literacy

About reading, the basic code, suggestions for further reading, and parent programs for home use with beginning readers. 2004

372.4 Op3d Opitz, Michael

Don't Speed Read! 12 Steps to Fluency

The author dispels the misinformation that has arisen about fluency since the National Reading Panel named it as a key element of reading and helps teachers explore and understand their role in supporting students who read with appropriate speed, accuracy, expression-and comprehension. The book equips teachers to make reliable professional judgments about students' fluency and provides a step-by-step plan with an array of instructional options. For use with Grades K–5. 2008

j372.4 Sch33c Schiller, Pam

Creating Readers: Over 1000 Activities, Tongue Twisters, Fingerplays, Games, Songs, Poems, and Stories

A comprehensive resource to develop a strong foundation for pre-readers. Provides teachers and parents with the tools to teach pre-reading skills with over 1000 activities, games, finger plays, songs, tongue twisters, poems, and stories for the letters of the alphabet. 2001

372.4 T353t Thogmartin, Mark B.

Teach a Child to Read with Children's Books: Combining Story Reading, Phonics, and Writing to Promote Reading Success.

Includes chapters such as: The "great debate", acquiring language and learning to read; Early readers: what can they teach us?; What works?; One successful program; Using "real books" in your program; Learning about letters, sounds, and words. 1996

372.41 H147s Hall, Susan and Louisa Moats

Straight Talk About Reading: How Parents Can Make a Difference During the Early Years.

While this book addresses the need to read aloud to children as infants, the primary focus is on the needs of preschool and elementary school children. The authors recommend early exposure to reading in order to aid children in their cognitive development and familiarize them with a wide range of vocabulary, the structure of printed words, and story development. A discussion of the phonics vs. whole-language approaches is provided.

j372.452 B726c Bradbury, Judy

Children's Book Corner: A Read-Aloud Resource with Tips, Techniques, and Plans for Teachers, Librarians and Parents

Lv. Pre-K - K 2006

649.1 R319u Ruethling, Ann

Under the Chinaberry Tree: Books and Inspirations for Mindful Parenting

An engaging useful book for parents making reading decisions or gathering tips on sharing communication with their children. 2003

j649.58 AL59w Allyn, Pam

What to Read When: The Books and Stories to Read with Your Child - and All the Best Times to Read Them

Targeted principally at parents, Allyn’s earnestly utilitarian guide to read-aloud books for children promises to “help you find the perfect books for the perfect times.” To that end, she offers a potpourri of self-help tools including a “reader’s ladder” of titles for children from birth to age 10, 50 thematic lists of “all the best books for the moments that matter most,” 10 reasons for reading to kids, and four keys for helping children become lifelong readers.2009

649.58 F832r Fox, Mem

Reading Magic: Why Reading Aloud to Our Children Will Change Their Lives Forever

Fox explains that babies are born learners, discusses the importance of books in the home, and stresses the value of a read-aloud ritual. She also includes a chapter on how to read aloud, which novice readers will find useful. Anecdotal stories and "success stories" might intimidate parents whose children do not learn to read by age five, even with mom or dad reading aloud to them. Theories provided do not include reference to supporting research. 2008.

Community Resources

j027.625 M623b Maddigan, Beth

The Big Book of Stories, Songs, and Sing-alongs: Programs for Babies, Toddlers and Families

Designed to promote lifelong reading and library use. 2003

Web Resources

Every Child Ready to Read

The Public Library Association and the Association for Library Services to Children initiative that stresses the importance of early literacy practices start with the primary adult in a child's life.

Education Sector

Million Dollar Babies: Why Infants Can't Be Hardwired for Success, by Sara Mead

Discussion of issues related to applying the findings of brain research to very young children or applying results of animal research to humans.

National Center for Family Literacy

Family literacy helps parents and children form a learning partnership that ends the cycle of poverty and low literacy. NCFL works to find solutions that build on the family to create a new cycle of ongoing learning and mutual support.

LINCS: Literacy Information and Communication System

From their website: LINCS provides access to a number of resources that will help both parents and early childhood and childhood educators learn strategies, identify needed skills, and understand the evidence base.

Reach Out and Read

Reach Out and Read (ROR) is a national non-profit organization that promotes early literacy by giving new books to children and advice to parents about the importance of reading aloud in pediatric exam rooms across the nation.

Reading Is Fundamental

The web site of the nation's oldest and largest nonprofit children's literacy organization. Includes information for parents, educations and RIF community coordinators.

Parent Action

Helps connect parents, school, and communities to resources to improve health and well-being of children.

Reading Rockets

Web site for a national initiative that disseminates research-based information on helping children become readers.

Bright Beginnings

The Kent ISD Bright Beginnings Program is a partnership between Kent ISD and its constituent districts. The program provides services to families with children birth to kindergarten entry throughout Kent County.

Great Start

Your community - what's happening in Kent County.

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