Archive for the ‘Quotes’ Category


“One no-cost activity in which fathers can engage with their children that has been consistently linked with higher student achievement is reading. Based on this premise, the Fathers Reading Every Day (FRED) program was developed to encourage fathers to become active in their children’s early literacy development.

“FRED is a family literacy program designed by the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service designed to improve the early literacy development of children, specifically targeted to fathers and other male caregivers. During the FRED program, male participants are given research-based, yet user-friendly, guides that enable them to begin daily reading activities with their children. Since the FRED program began 2002, over 20,000 fathers and children all over the world have participated.”

“Storytime with dad: Why fathers should read with their children,” a Mass Literacy blog post, November 2, 2015



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“On behalf of the nation’s governors, we urge Congress to enhance state early childhood education programs by continuing Preschool Development Grants as part of FY 2016 appropriations.

“Governors understand that early childhood education is a key component of building a literate, knowledgeable and skilled 21st century workforce. Preschool Development Grants, including expansion grants, enable governors to build on their efforts to promote school readiness by accelerating state-focused innovation to improve access and quality in early childhood education. States use the program to better serve our youngest students, including English language learners and early learners with disabilities; improve the professional development of preschool teachers and administrators; and expand access to early education programs to thousands of students.”

A letter from the National Governors Association to Congress, November 10, 2015

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“Story time is drawing capacity crowds at public libraries across New York and across the country at a time when, more than ever, educators are emphasizing the importance of early literacy in preparing children for school and for developing critical thinking skills. The demand crosses economic lines, with parents at all income levels vying to get in.”

“Long a library staple, story time has typically been an informal reading to a small group of boys and girls sitting in a circle. Today’s story times involve carefully planned lessons by specially trained librarians that emphasize education as much as entertainment, and often include suggestions for parents and caregivers about how to reinforce what children have learned, library officials said.”

“Long Line at the Library? It’s Story Time Again,” by Winnie Hu, the New York Times, November 1, 2015

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“My husband is among about 50 adults who are participating in an Oakland Public Library program to train volunteers to read to low-income three and four year olds in preschool and Head Start classrooms for a half hour each week. He has just completed his 18 hours of mandatory training, plus two observations of storytime conducted by child librarians. Once he presents his assignment to fellow volunteers (which involves two books, several fingerplays and songs as well as ideas about how to handle challenges that might arise with eager and squirmy listeners) he will be cleared to face his assigned preschoolers.

“Some hear about this training and think it is excessive; as a former preschool teacher, I consider this level of preparation appropriate for a volunteer, but far too little for a preschool teacher. Disturbingly, however, my husband’s volunteer training exceeds that of many teachers working with preschool-age children each day across our country…”

“Despite all we have learned about the crucial development in the first years of life and the important role of teachers in facilitating early learning, ECE [early childhood education] jobs offer little premium to those teachers who have earned degrees.”

“It’s time to change how we prepare and support early childhood educators,” by Marcy Whitebook, posted on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation website Impatient Optimists, October 19, 2015

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“Presidential candidates hoping to attract Millennials, Hispanics and swing state voters in 2016 could be well-advised to make early education a key part of their education platform, according to the results of a new national poll showing that 76 percent of voters support the idea of spending federal money to expand public preschool.

“Commissioned for the third year running by the D.C.-based early childhood advocacy organization, First Five Years Fund, this year’s poll included several new questions including one on how favorably respondents would view a candidate interested in increasing funding for early childhood programs. Fifty-four percent said they would hold a more positive view of such a candidate.

“’It’s polling so well that there’s little downside to running on it,’ said Kris Perry, executive director of First Five Years Fund. ‘Based on the evidence, I hope a couple of them–someone on each side–will take it up.’”


From “Early education popular with voters, but what about candidates?” by Lillian Mongeau, The Hechinger Report, October 22, 2015

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“Your heart and lungs come out fully developed when you are born, but the brain is completely dependent on what it encounters on its ride to full development, and especially in the first three years there’s a huge amount of brain development that occurs: 80 to 85 percent of the physical brain will be developed in that time. And that brain is absolutely dependent on the language input, parent talk, and interaction, which is the key catalyst for creating those neural connections. A lot of people think of parent talk as just a way to build children’s vocabulary. But in truth, because it has such a fundamental impact on all the brain wiring, parent talk impacts all of brain function, from memory, emotion, to stability, [self-regulation], [to] spatial and math [skills].”

“Going back to our research program and our curriculum development, we’ve culled it down to what we call the Three T’s, which is Tune in, Talk More, and Take Turns. So Tune In is really following your child’s lead, seeing what your child is interested in. Talking More is talking more about it using rich vocabulary, narrating your child’s day. Taking Turns is really viewing your child as a conversational partner and having a conversation back and forth.”

“We need to really think about what education in this country looks like. We need to align our policy with our science. And science is pretty clear that learning begins on day one, not the first day of school. The only way we’re going to ever move this needle is starting from day one.”

Dr. Dana Suskind, a pediatric neurosurgeon and cochlear implant specialist at the University of Chicago, in a Boston Globe interview, “Thirty million little words for a lifetime of difference,” October 9, 2015

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“Virtually nobody was against expanding the state’s preschool program, and plenty of research was provided as to benefits of existing programs.

“But the arguments crystallized — and the attendees figuratively caught their breath – when a veteran kindergarten teacher from Freehold came forward with a packet of Week One assessments from some of her new students.

“Randee Mandelbaum’s new students were asked to draw crayon self-portraits and demonstrate how well they knew their letters and numbers. On the left side of the sheets was the work of children who hadn’t been through preschool, and on the right side were those who had.”

“‘You will see one student does not know any letters, cannot write any letters, and doesn’t even know how to write her own name,’ said Mandelbaum, a 20-year veteran. ‘While the other student can write most of the alphabet comfortably.’”

“Kindergarten Kids’ Drawings, Numbers Graphically Show Why Pre-K is Key,” by John Mooney, NJSpotlight.com, September 22, 2015

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