Readiness: Early Learning Trajectories

Children’s early life learning trajectories determine their level of readiness for the challenges involved in learning to read. Understanding these trajectories involves understanding:

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“So the sobering message here is that if children don’t have the right experiences during these sensitive periods for the development of a variety of skills, including many cognitive and language capacities, that’s a burden that those kids are going to carry; the sensitive period is over, and it’s going to be harder for them.” – Dr. Jack Shonkoff, Chair, National Scientific Council on the Developing Child

“…children who have trouble with oral language generally will go on to have difficulty with written language…” – Dr. Paula Tallal, Co-Director, Center for Molecular and Behavioral Neuroscience, Rutgers

“…Children of professional parents — I mean, talkative families and college educated — heard forty-eight million words addressed to them by the time they’re four. Children in welfare families who were taciturn heard thirteen million words addressed to them by the time they were four.” – Dr. Todd Risley, co-author “Meaningful Differences in the Everyday Experiences of Young American Children”