For Preschool Teachers and Childcare Providers

  •  Learning Through Poetry
    Writing prompts, poetry walks, interviews with your favorite poets and more!
  • New Booklist! Spring Is in the Air
    Animals awaken. Baseball beckons. March winds begin to blow.
  •  Target the Problem!
    Understanding a child's reading problems — and practical ways to help
  • Celebrate Music and Musicians!
    Fiction and nonfiction books, activities, apps and websites all about music
  • Reading Adventure Packs for Families
    Robots, stars, flight, dinosaurs, oceans, bees, building, music and more!
  • Building Print Awareness Through Read Alouds
    How to guide your child's attention to the print on the page
  • Fun with Phonemes
    Tips for teaching young children about sounds and letters
  • Everyday Conversations
    Activities to encourage speech & language development
  • What Works
    Preschool language and literacy practices
  • What a Story!
    Hints on how to read aloud to a group

Young children are like sponges. Every day they learn skills that will help them become readers. Infants, toddlers, and preschoolers become aware of books and print and learn about sounds and letters. Preschool educators play a critical role in promoting literacy, preventing reading difficulties, and preparing young children for kindergarten. The following research-based information was collected especially for preschool teachers, Head Start teachers, teacher aides, and other staff, as well as for parents. The information reflects what we know about instructional and parenting practices that build a foundation for literacy in the formative years between infancy and five years of age.

Encouraging Young Storytellers

When adults respond to a toddler's efforts to communicate, they increase conversational skills, boost vocabulary, and propel the kids towards literacy.

Launching Young Readers series

Launching Young Readers Series

Our PBS series explores reading and writing development in young children. These shows focus particularly on preschool children:

Reading and writing readiness

Sounds of Speech

Sounds of Speech

Figuring out words that rhyme, coming up with words that share a beginning sound, and saying silly words all help build a child's phonological awareness — the ability to notice, think about, and play with sounds in words.

Print Awareness

Print Awareness

Print awareness is understanding that print is organized in a particular way — that print is read from left to right and top to bottom, words consist of letters, and spaces appear between words.


One strong predictor of success in reading is a child’s familiarity with the letters of the alphabet — knowing a letter’s name, shape and sound.


Even our youngest learners enjoy putting crayon to paper. What often starts as scribbling ends up being important clues to a child’s understanding that print carries meaning. Give kids lots of opportunity to practice!

Reading aloud

Reading aloud is one of the most important things parents and teachers can do with children. Reading aloud builds many important foundational skills, introduces vocabulary, provides a model of fluent, expressive reading, and helps children recognize what reading for pleasure is all about.

Reading Rockets is proud to partner with: NAEYC

PBS Kids Raising Readers

Our Literacy Blogs

Dr. Joanne Meier
Dr. Joanne Meier

Connecting with Parents

Growing Readers Newsletter: Monthly Tips for Parents
Pre-K Guide: Reading and Writing Readiness
Great Children's Books
Reading Tips for Parents of Babies, Toddlers & Preschoolers
"Oh, magic hour, when a child first knows she can read printed words!" — A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, 1943