Archive | Unite for Literacy

What’s a Parent to Do…for School Success?

I spend a lot of time suggesting ways to support preschool children to guarantee that they will have joyful school lives and do well when they enter formal schooling. I offer below what families do that help assure children will enjoy school success from the time they enter kindergarten. If one wanted to make sure children are […]

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Cultural Clash or Embrace?

This Friday, Jan. 25, is Multicultural Children’s Book Day, a book-reading and book-discussing celebration intended to contribute to children’s understandings of their own cultures and the appreciation of others’ cultures. Perhaps you heard about this special day in the media. It is more likely, however, that you read or saw video of an incident in Washington, D.C., involving some high […]

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Bookmark this. There’s Good News from 2018!

It’s always nice to receive good news, isn’t it? A Twitter account calling itself “The Library Haunter” last month supplied some great news (shown here) for those of us who are appreciative of and dedicated to literacy, but especially book literacy. Now, what I call book literacy isn’t just any old kind of literacy. It’s […]

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One Language or Two? More is Better.

Regularly, I read journals and other publications written for literacy professionals like me. I subscribe to several, and with the blossoming of online publishing archives, along with my university’s library, I have access to the world. Because part of my work is to collect translations and narrations of books for beginning readers in the Unite […]

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Babysitter for Sale!

They invited their babysitter to join them for dinner. While the parents were chatting away about this and that, their young son passed time quietly with his sitter. Don’t get me wrong! The babysitter had much to offer. Vivid colors. Constant motion. A world of entertaining information. But the child never spoke a word, knowing it seemed that the […]

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School’s Out but Learning Never Stops

I spend a lot of time suggesting ways to support preschool children to guarantee that they will have joyful and successful time in school. But what about when they’re not in school? Even for short periods of time, like Holiday or summer breaks? Well, I invite you to glean ideas from the following list of what […]

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Linking Arms and Growing Readers

Fort Morgan, Colorado, is a farming community where crops like wheat and sugar beets grow. Farming can be challenging there, however, as the eastern plains of the Rocky Mountains are a literal water-deprived high desert. Fort Morgan is also historically challenged to grow more important crop—that of young readers. Morgan County, with only 27% of homes […]

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How to Become Proficient in English…or Not

A few years back I spent time in Navajo schools, working for various teachers, coaching them on literacy instruction and inserting as much support as I could for their ongoing professional growth. One visit coincided with the annual English Proficiency Test administered to students. Hearing that, my first response was, “Wait! These kids were raised speaking English. […]

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The Cost of Free Books

I’m currently working with the Kentucky Humanities Prime Time Project in a school in my home town. The fabulous librarian coordinates this project which has invited 40 of the school’s Hispanic families (parents AND kids) to enjoy a light meal, some picture-book read-aloud time and participate in demonstrations of humanities-based conversations about the books once a week. Humanities conversations focus […]

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First WHY, Then HOW

It seems that these days every news or scholarly article about literacy development contains the word “skills.” Reading and writing skills, to be exact. We want to teach children to read and write, but instead we teach reading and writing SKILLS. What’s up with that? I believe it’s because skills are easier to measure than lifelong learning habits. Skills get attention because […]