Reading & Literacy

A Look at Early Reading First, a Federal Program for Preschoolers

By Mary Ann Zehr — December 03, 2009 1 min read
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While reporting on the impact of Early Reading First, which was authorized by the No Child Left Behind Act and is the lesser-known relative of Reading First, I cast the net for what’s been written about it.

In my story, soon to be published by Education Week, I describe findings from a federal national evaluation of the program and mention a technical analysis by Vanderbilt University researchers on eight child-care centers participating in the program.

Let me refer you in this blog to a few other studies, books, or papers that have been released, or are soon to be released about Early Reading First that I didn’t mention in my EdWeek article.

—In October, researchers in psychology from Texas A&M University, College Station, published an evaluation of the program that found children acquired knowledge of the alphabet and print concepts. It also found that the program successfully promoted vocabulary knowledge. Read the abstract of the study, published in the journal Reading and Writing, here.

Achieving Excellence in Preschool Literacy Instruction, a book published by Guilford Press in 2008, describes activities that educators are carrying out at various Early Reading First sites.

—Guilford Press plans to publish by April another book about the preschool program, Early Reading First Research, Resources, and Best Practices. Carol Vukelich, the director of the Delaware Center for Teacher Education at the University of Delaware, whom I interviewed for my story, just received the galleys for review.

Update: Here’s a link to my story at about Early Reading First.

A version of this news article first appeared in the Curriculum Matters blog.