Want to spread early literacy? Send in a parent. Moms and dads who talk, sing, and read out loud can fill their children’s worlds with engaging, enriching language.
But the challenge for Springfield, Mass., and other cities is figuring out how to reach parents and engage them in sharing a love of language and learning with their children.
To find good ideas on family engagement, the Reading Success by 4th Grade initiative (RS4G), which is backed by The Irene E. & George A. Davis Foundation, did a simple thing: It asked parents.
“Focus groups of parents, and largely moms who participated in one of our three sessions, revealed what we knew: that parents have clearly moved into the digital age,” Sally Fuller writes in a blog post on the Davis Foundation’s Read by Fourth Grade website. “Email, for anyone who has children, is almost recognized as a thing of the past. Moms told us almost universally that their primary engagement with the world comes through social media and texting. The smartphone serves as the communications tool of choice.” (more…)