Program Will Improve English Reading Skills through Use of First Language


The Windham Area Women and Girls Fund awarded Eastern CT State Univesity’s Center for Early Childhood Education (CECE) a $6,446 grant that will allow the staff to train bilingual women and girls on reading strategies. This will create an awareness to families on the importance of reading to children in their first language. Eastern’s Child and Family Development Resource Center will partner with the CECE for the project.
According to Eastern CT State University’s News Flash, researchers and the CECE staff will videotape families in the heavily Latino Willimantic area reading in both English and their first language, and than broadcast the videos on local access television to further promote reading to young children. The first round of sessions will be offered in spring 2013 to 12 families, and the second round will be offered in fall of 2013. Eastern education and communication students will be involved in the training and videotaping.
Research indicates that children who master their first language can easily translate those skills to English, according to the article. Ensuring that children are read to in their native language helps develop their language and literacy skills in both English and their native language.