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To register for an Early Childhood course, please contact abrown@familieslearning.org.

Alphabet Knowledge

Alphabet knowledge is the recognition of letters as distinct symbols that have specific names and specific sounds associated with them. This training designed to provide early childhood teachers with the strategies needed to introduce alphabet knowledge experiences to preschool children. Topics covered in the training include: improving preschool children’s alphabet knowledge; improving preschool children’s print awareness; and applying alphabet knowledge and print awareness strategies throughout the daily routine.

Dialogic Reading

Dialogic reading is a research-based technique that can be used effectively with children ages two through five. In dialogic reading, the adult encourages the child to participate in the telling of the story they're reading together rather than just listening. During this training, participants will learn how to use dialogic reading techniques in the classroom.

Dialogic Reading Workshops (Train-the-Trainer)

This train-the-trainer session will help staff provide parents with the knowledge and skills needed to use dialogic reading techniques with their children. Dialogic reading is a research-based technique that can be used effectively with children ages two through five. Participants will leave with materials to deliver parent workshops based on the findings of the National Early Literacy Panel (NELP), research supporting dialogic reading and the work of Dr. Grover "Russ" Whitehurst.

Oral Language Development

Oral Language is a leading predictor skill of later reading achievement for preschool children. Talking and learning to have conversations is a major developmental task. This session explores oral language development and how it supports skills that predict later success in reading and kindergarten readiness. Participants will have the opportunity to discuss and practice strategies that work to support young children at home, in school and childcare settings, and in the community.

Phonological Awareness

Phonological Awareness is the ability to hear and manipulate the separate sounds within words independent of the words’ meanings. This ability is directly linked to later reading ability, making this a vital area of instruction for preschool educators. This training will focus on the importance of code-focused instruction, strategies to use in the classroom, and how to support children as they learn to manipulate units of sound, and in what ways.

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NCFL Partners

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Toyota Family Learning Program

Toyota, one of the nation's most successful corporations, began a partnership with NCFL in 1991. In addition to a commitment of more than $50 million, Toyota has also contributed a wealth of in-kind support — including advertising, planning and management expertise — to form one of the most progressive corporate/nonprofit partnerships in the nation.

Three major programs have been developed through the Toyota partnership based on the family literacy model of parents and children learning together. These models have influenced federal and state legislation, leveraged local dollars to support family literacy and led to successful programs being replicated across the country.

Read more about Toyota's commitment to communities

William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

NCFL received its very first donation in 1989 from the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust to promote and implement family literacy programming, first in Kentucky and North Carolina and later nationwide. The Kenan Family Literacy Model in part laid the groundwork for 30 years of subsequent family literacy and family learning programming developed by NCFL.

Kenan has continued to support NCFL’s place-based family literacy programs since our inception. Most recently, they invested in the organization’s Innovation Fund, which will launch emerging ideas and programmatic evolutions in the multigenerational learning space.

Learn more about the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust

Dollar General Literacy Foundation

The Dollar General Literacy Foundation began partnering with NCFL in 2006. A signature effort of this partnership is the National Literacy Directory, a resource that launched in 2010 and strives to reach the 35.7 million adults ages 18-64 who do not have a high school diploma by guiding them to better-paying, more stable jobs.

The National Literacy Directory contains over 10,000 educational agencies located across the United States and has a dedicated toll-free number to help support those wanting to pursue educational opportunities in their communities.

Dollar General also provides support for development of NCFL’s innovative family learning resources centered on financial literacy and Parent and Child Together (PACT) Time®.

Learn more about the Dollar General Literacy Foundation

PNC Grow Up Great

PNC Grow Up Great believes deeply in the power of high-quality early childhood education and provides innovative opportunities that assist families, educators and community organizations to enhance children's learning and development.

PNC Grow Up Great has partnered with NCFL since 1994 to advance early literacy and learning resources for vulnerable families. Current efforts supported by PNC include a collaborative initiative in two at-risk Detroit communities that engages families to support vocabulary development for children under age 5.

NCFL's work is also featured on the PNC Grow Up Great Lesson Center website. The Lesson Center includes over 100 free, high-quality preschool lesson plans and research-based instructional techniques and strategies. All lesson plans contain Home/School Connections printouts, in English and Spanish, to help families extend and reinforce the learning at home.

Learn more about PNC Grow Up Great

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

NCFL was named a recipient of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation’s "Voices for Economic Opportunity Grand Challenge," which seeks to elevate diverse voices in order to broaden the conversation about the issues inhibiting economic mobility and generate deeper awareness along with actionable understanding. NCFL will develop and launch a podcast series that will highlight the remarkable stories of low-income, diverse families across the U.S. who have improved their communities through Family Service Learning.

Foundation Website

Goodling Institute

NCFL has partnered with the Goodling Institute for Research and Family Literacy at Penn State University since 2001, working collaboratively to further research, professional development, and policy efforts for family literacy and intergenerational learning.

The work of this partnership includes, but is not limited to, a strong research strand at NCFL's national annual convening, the Families Learning Summit; advocacy for family literacy and learning to further support for and inclusion of family-focused education in new and ongoing legislation; and dissemination of the latest research, resources, information, and professional development opportunities for literacy and learning practitioners and advocates, including the Certificate in Family Literacy provided by the Goodling Institute.

Learn more about the Goodling Institute for Research and Family Literacy at Penn State University