When children begin school without a strong foundation, they are likely to fall behind. Literacy First makes sure that children in Central Texas develop the reading skills that allow them to realize their full potential with regard to education, economic opportunity, civic engagement, and personal development.
Our tutors work one-to-one with every student for 20-30 minutes daily, using research-based curriculum to develop skills that predict reading success – phonological awareness, letter knowledge, phonics, and oral reading fluency.
Our tutors receive more than 50 hours of literacy training across the year. Literacy First supervisors who are experts in reading are onsite weekly to observe lessons, monitor student progress, and make adjustments to meet individual student needs.
Data drives our instruction. We assess all students at the beginning of the year to determine which ones need the opportunity to develop critical early literacy skills. We measure student progress weekly to ensure they are responding to the lessons and accelerating their reading skills. Students graduate from the program when they reach grade-level benchmarks. We measure student progress all year to make sure they maintain their gains.
We deploy our early literacy interventions via two models.
AmeriCorps Model: Literacy First hires and trains AmeriCorps members dedicating a year of service to the community.
District Capacity Building Model: Literacy First staff train school district staff (full-time tutors and Instructional Coaches) to deliver the Literacy First program, with the goal of building community capacity over time.