“Supporting Early Literacy at Home: A Parents’ Guide” is series of online, self-paced learning modules designed to provide information for parents and caregivers so that they can support their children’s early literacy development. Research shows that parent/caregiver involvement is the number one predictor of early literacy success as well as future academic success. Each learning module will provide information and tips (strategies) that will arm parents/caregivers with tools to support children from birth through the beginning years of school.
Research Support for Resource Guide
Research suggests that parental involvement in a child's learning has more of an impact on a child's educational outcomes than any other demographic measure including social class, level of parental education or income (Feinstein & Symons, 1999).
The roots of family literacy as an educational method come from the belief that “the parent is the child’s first teacher.” Reading is the gateway to learning, opening doors to faraway adventures and new possibilities and promising futures. Without strong reading skills, children will face a host of difficult challenges throughout their lives (Oregon State Department of Education).
Rationale for Resource Guide
Act 284 (the Read to Succeed Act), enacted by the legislature of South Carolina in 2013, states in “Section 59-155-110:
“There is established within the South Carolina Department of Education the South Carolina Read to Succeed Office to implement a comprehensive, systemic approach to reading which will ensure that:
- Each student and his parent or guardian is continuously informed in writing of:
- specific actions that the parent or guardian can take to help the student comprehend grade-level texts by providing access to books, assuring time for the student to read independently, reading to students, and talking with the student about books;
- Each district PK-12 reading proficiency plan shall:
- include a system for helping parents understand how they can support the student as a reader at home;
- Programs that focus on early childhood literacy development in the State are required to promote:
- parent training and support for parent involvement in developing children's literacy; and
- development of oral language, print awareness, and emergent writing; and are encouraged to promote community literacy including, but not limited to, primary health care providers, faith-based organizations, county libraries, and service organizations.
- the developmental and learning support that children must have in order to be ready for school;
Design of Resource Guide
Each of the six modules contained in this resource provides background information and targeted activities that are designed to enable parents to support their child, as well as resources providing further understanding.
Each module is introduced by a short video and followed by various additional activities including videos, articles, and other relevant research-based resources.
“As parents, the most important thing we can do is read to our children early and often. Reading is the path to success in school and life. When children learn to love books, they learn to love learning”. (Laura Bush)
Family and Literacy Defined
The SCDE framework defines family broadly as a network of individuals who support the social, emotional, spiritual, physical, and educational growth and development of children and students. The SCDE seeks to empower families and community members by providing capacity-building assistance and resources for effective family engagement that promotes literacy.
The SCDE framework defines literacy broadly as a lifelong process that involves creativity, understanding, critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration, and effective communication. SCDE collaborates with the state, district, school, community and family in fostering early learning in the area of literacy.