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Volunteer reader doing a picture book read aloud with diverse group of kids

Afterschool Fosters Success in School

This brief describes how afterschool programs can contribute to student success by helping children’s social and emotional development, avoidance of risky behaviors, improved school attendance, engagement in learning, and improved test scores and grades.
Volunteer reader doing a picture book read aloud with diverse group of kids

Afterschool Programs: A Wise Public Investment

Afterschool advocates and practitioners face a daily struggle for adequate funding. This brief describes how both research and personal stories reveal resoundingly that afterschool programs are a worthy investment.
Female tutor working on-on-one with an elementary student on reading

Developing a Tutoring Program

A tutoring program that will best serve children’s needs should be carefully developed with those needs in mind. Here are eight steps to developing a tutoring program, from setting goals to developing a curriculum.

Volunteer reader doing a picture book read aloud with diverse group of kids

Effective Out-of-School Time Reading Programs

Reading instruction does not need to stop when the bell rings. Using out-of-school time (OST) can be an effective way to boost academic skills while engaging students outside of the classroom. Education research lab McREL reviews effective afterschool and summer programs that focus on reading, and identifies the components that make them successful.
Parent with elementary child talking to teacher at school

Engaging Family and Community in Afterschool and Summer Programs

Informal literacy experiences often serve to shape young people’s identity as readers and writers as much as or more than formal schooling.Community and family support can emphasize the importance of reading and writing, build confidence, influence young people’s literacy habits, and encourage youth to seek out ways to engage in literate activities. Through a renewed national push for literacy on all levels, both families and community members have diverse opportunities in which to impact students’ literacy skills.This article offers strategies to develop community engagement.
Mother and daughter reading together outside in tent made of sheets

Finding a Great Summer Program: A Checklist for Parents

Early and sustained summer learning opportunities lead to higher graduation rates, better preparation for college, and positive effects on children’s self-esteem, confidence, and motivation. High-quality summer programs keep students engaged in learning, teach them new skills, allow them to develop previously unseen talents, and foster creativity and innovation.

illustration of young girl struggling with reading and writing

A Guide for Finding a Tutor

Get the basics on the benefits, challenges and costs of different kinds of tutoring services: private, tutoring centers, online tutors, and free Title I supplemental services.

Volunteer reader doing a picture book read aloud with diverse group of kids

How Community Groups Can Serve Children Who Most Need Help

Helping kids learn to read is a great goal for community groups. An important step for all groups is to not only define how to help, but also to identify the children in the community who could must benefit from what you do. This article provides tips for finding and serving these children.

woodcut style illustration of the national capitol building

More Schools Turn to Extended Days

Hours of test preparation, especially in underperforming schools, has left little time for electives or even some of the un-tested basic subjects. Adding time to the school day and year has helped some schools improve their scores and flesh out their curriculums.
Volunteer reader doing a picture book read aloud with diverse group of kids

Non-Profits: A Pro-Literacy Tradition

From free books to home visits, non-profit organizations play an important role in promoting reading. Learn about some of the non-profits with a commitment to helping children become readers.
Rediscover Your Public Library

Rediscover Your Public Library

Libraries are great resources for families with young children; you can find books, entertainment, educational and cultural enrichment, literacy tips, and other valuable information. Here are nine reasons to visit your public library!

Diverse group of kids learning about bees and honey in elementary classroom

Tackling Achievement Gaps From Summer Learning Loss

A Rand study indicates that well-designed summer programs can help low-income students read and do math better. The key to academic gains in summer programs are steady attendance and a high-quality program with engaging, fun activities for school children and highly effective teachers teaching for at least three hours a day.

woodcut style illustration of the national capitol building

Time to Learn: Benefits of a Longer School Day

In this excerpt from the book Time to Learn: How a New School Schedule Is Making Smarter Kids, Happier Parents & Safer Neighborhoods, the authors discuss how a longer school day can support achievement in reading and math while providing a richer, broader curriculum. The book discusses extended day success stories in public schools throughout the country, the impact on teachers and families, and benefits for English language learners and children with learning disabilities.
Female tutor working on-on-one with an elementary student on reading

Tips for Reading Tutors

The U.S. Department of Education developed this brief guide for reading tutors. It lists ways that tutoring helps both the learner and the tutor, and provides practical tips that can help tutors be more effective in their work.

Tutoring Strategies for Preschool and Kindergarten

Tutoring Strategies for Preschool and Kindergarten

Whether a tutor is reading aloud, talking, or writing with a child, there are strategies for making these interactions even more valuable. Learn about these strategies in these tips for tutoring preschool and kindergarten children.

Female tutor working on-on-one with an elementary student on reading

Volunteers: Identify Your Schools’ Needs

How can volunteers help build children’s literacy in their communities? Rotary International and IRA developed these questionnaires and teachers’ wish list to help you determine the right literacy project for your community.