Promising Practices for Engaging Families in Literacy

Edited by:
Holly Kreider, The Heising-Simons Foundation
Margaret Caspe, National Association for Family, School, and Community Engagement
Diana Hiatt-Michael, Pepperdine University

A volume in the series: Family School Community Partnership Issues. Editor(s): Diana Hiatt-Michael, Pepperdine University.

Published 2013

(sponsored by the Family School Community Partnership Issues SIG)

Promising Practices for Engaging Families in Literacy fulfills the need from parents and teachers to improve home/school assistance in every child’s literacy development. Literacy skills are required and valued in all academic areas and at all levels of education from preschool through adulthood.

This volume provides suggestions and support to improve parent/child involvement in literacy activities from preschool through teacher education programs. Research is provided to undergird the documented practices that increase student academic achievement through improved literacy skills across academic areas. Practices include connections between home and school across age groups, developmental needs groups, universities, community groups, and technologies.

List of Contributors. Foreword. PART I: EFFECTIVE INTERVENTIONS AND APPROACHES FOR ENGAGING FAMILIES IN CHILDREN’S LITERACY. 1 An Intergenerational Approach to Family Literacy, Joy Lorenzo Kennedy and Margaret Caspe. 2 Effects of Parent Read-Aloud Programs, Pam Sullivan and Mary von Witzleben. 3 Engaging Families in Promoting Emerging Literacy for Children with Down Syndrome, Anne van Bysterveldt, Susan Foster-Cohen, and Gail T. Gillon. PART II: HONORING AND INCORPORATING PARENTS’ EXPERTISE IN CHILDREN’S LANGUAGE AND LITERACY ACQUISITION. 4 Érase Una Vez: Latino Family Narrative Practices During the Preschool Years, Gigliana Melzi, Adina R. Schick, and Emily Bostwick. 5 Family Engagement in Heritage Language and Literacy, Elena Lyutykh and Lee Shumow. 6 Engaging Parents as Researchers to Support Children’s Language and Literacy Development, Lori A. Norton-Meier and Kathryn F. Whitmore. 7 A Dialogue of Three: The Use of Family Dialogue Journals in The High School ELA Classroom, Amber Simmons. PART III: NEW APPROACHES TO ENGAGING FAMILIES IN CHILDREN’S LITERACY. 8 Engaging Families in Science and Literacy Through Museums and Libraries, Dale McCreedy and Julia Skolnik. 9 Literacy Space: Partnering with Families to Support Struggling Literacy Learners, Jennifer Tuten and Deborah Jensen. 10 Using Technology to Engage Families in Young Children’s Literacy, Holly Kreider.

"This book is a timely addition that brings us back to the origin of children’s literacy development in an enriched family environment. This is refreshing in light of standardized assessments and Common Core State Standards related movements in education. One key principle for literacy instruction is to start where the learner is (National Academy of Science, 1999). Understanding the influences of children’s literacy skills beyond the school wall informs us of who they are and provides insight into how we assist children in learning.

It provides ample program practices with a moderate literature review which clearly illustrate perspectives about the family’s role in children’s literacy development. Readers will find the program approaches informative, which may help generate more ideas to suit their own practice. Though being literacy-focused, the ideas could be applied to different subject areas. Additionally, the approaches could be useful for all levels of education from preschool to adulthood. For educators and practitioners involved in family learning programs and seeking ideas to inspire family engagement project development, this book is a great resource for expanding the repertoire of family literacy practices." Grace H.C. Huang Cleveland State University in Journal of Family Strengths (Read full review)