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Jul 4, 2018 |
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Summer time is here! Unofficially starting with Memorial Day and ending with Labor Day, families come together to enjoy the season of vacations, barbecues, and fun. Specifically, Fourth of July is a time in which families gather to celebrate America’s independence with fireworks! What better time to start engaging the family in educational activities than during this holiday? Below you can find great ways to keep the family engaged today and throughout the summer! Enjoy a home. Families do not have to go on vacation or send their children to summer camp to enjoy the season. Families can incorporate some of these activities to enjoy their hometown and bring summer camp home! Take a walking tour of your town (or design your own tour by researching online) to learn some local history. Visit and tour a local farm to discover what it takes to grow the foods you eat. Additionally, explore Camp Wonderopolis, NCFL’s FREE online summer-learning destination for learners of all ages! This year’s Camp, Symphony of Wonders, explores 42 individual lessons about music, through the lenses of science, history, culture, and more. Take Camp on-the-go with the free app, available on iOS and AndroidRegister today to strike up the learning! [caption id="attachment_11027" align="alignnone" width="500"]Camp Wonderopolis app screenshot Camp Wonderopolis app screenshot[/caption] Summer activities to keep the mind engaged. All season long, our Endless Bookshelf website is publishing summer learning tips of the day, specifically about activities to avoid summer learning loss (when students lose some of what they learned in the previous school year during the summer). These tips follow a weekly schedule with a daily theme such as Math Mondays or Fiction (or Nonfiction) Fridays. Head over to Endless Bookshelf today to begin the summer reading and learning fun! [caption id="attachment_11028" align="alignright" width="225"]IMG_1376 (Custom) Father and daughter doing a Maker activity together using household items[/caption] Make cool things. "Mom! Mom! Mom! Can we make invisible ink?" While you have their attention, take advantage! PBS Parents: Adventures in Learning is a wonderful site full of nifty ideas (through art and culture, geography, history, science, math, and more) that brings parents and kids together. Make DIY binoculars, invisible ink, bubbles, or quirky things like Sesame Street Pom Poms—mostly from inexpensive or recycled materials—all the while learning and having fun together as a family! These are just a few suggestions to keep learning while spending time with family and friends throughout the summer. Keeping a curious mind and engaging with others provides year-round opportunities for fun and learning. What ideas do you have for family learning this summer?


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NCFL Partners

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 $35 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 and NCFL

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®.

Go to Dollar General Literacy Foundation's website

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.

PNC Grow Up Great

W.K. Kellogg Foundation

NCFL has partnered with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation since January 2016. The Foundation is currently supporting a dynamic two-generation family engagement initiative that expands NCFL's Family Learning model into select Head Start programs nationwide. NCFL's model presents an innovative way to support Head Start programs in meeting outcomes aligned with the Parent, Family, and Community Engagement Framework.

Visit the Foundation website

Better World Books

Better World Books selected NCFL as its domestic literacy partner in 2005 and has raised more than $1 million to support NCFL’s work and donated more than $15 million to support literacy and education efforts worldwide. Better World Books is a triple-bottom-line online bookstore, working equally for people, planet and profit. Each book purchased powers literacy across the world.

Better World Books’ support of NCFL has provided books and workshops to families after Hurricane Katrina, donated large book donations to literacy programs and families nationwide and fueled innovative family literacy and learning programs and resources in libraries, schools and community-based organizations. In addition to their work for literacy and education, Better World Books diverts books from landfills and offers carbon-balanced shipping.

Better World Books

Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation

In 2013, NCFL began a partnership with the Gates Foundation to ensure that our network of students, teachers, and families thrive among recent shifts in standards-based education. NCFL will leverage the unique strengths of our award-winning Wonderopolis® platform to build upon the growing teacher network that uses the resource for core daily instruction and as a basis for professional growth.

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.

Goodling Institute for Research and Family Literacy at Penn State University