Language Nutrition

Just as healthy food nourishes a growing baby’s body, language nutrition nourishes a baby’s brain. Quantity and quality of nourishing language, like healthy food, is critical to brain development.

Language-rich adult-child interactions, beginning at birth, have a direct impact on social-emotional and cognitive development and language and literacy ability.

The impact of adult-child interactions on the brains of infants and toddlers is unparalleled by any other stage of development, as this is the time when they are forming the neural “connections that build brain architecture – the foundation upon which all learning, behavior and health depend” (Center for the Developing Child, Harvard University).

cropped-screen-shot-2018-04-05-at-7-21-50-am1.pngA solid foundation of language nutrition – the use of language, beginning at birth, that is sufficiently rich in engagement, quality, quantity and context that it nourishes the child socially, neurologically and linguistically – is critical in developing a child’s capacity to learn.

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Language Nutrition™ – A Public Health and Education Imperative

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Just as healthy food nourishes a growing baby’s body, language nutrition nourishes a baby’s brain. Quantity and quality of nourishing language, like healthy food, is critical to brain development.

Language-rich adult-child interactions, beginning at birth, have a direct impact on social-emotional and cognitive development and language and literacy ability.

The impact of adult-child interactions on the brains of infants and toddlers is unparalleled by any other stage of development, as this is the time when they are forming the neural “connections that build brain architecture – the foundation upon which all learning, behavior and health depend” (Center for the Developing Child, Harvard University). 

And a solid foundation of language nutrition – the use of language, beginning at birth, that is sufficiently rich in engagement, quality, quantity and context that it nourishes the child socially, neurologically and linguistically – is critical in developing a child’s capacity to learn.  

GoMo Health, a leading population health management company, and Empowered Education a company that secializes in childhood development announces the launch of EduCare, an interactive program designed to promote early childhood literacy, learning, health, and wellness for families, caregivers and children ages 0-8 years old.

EduCare is a market-ready program with content developed by expert health care providers, educators, and behavioral scientists. Brain development through literacy is the most powerful tool in defining a child’s future success in school and life, and literacy development begins in the earliest months of a baby’s life, preparing them for a formal educational environment.

EduCare is available to moms and caregivers, delivering age-appropriate content and activities that coincide with baby’s birth date. Content includes health and literacy resources correlated to key growth and development milestones that guide them through early childhood development.

 

The trajectory of a child’s life can be changed if parents know how to deliver “Language Nutrition.”

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An alarming number of  children—about 67 percent nationwide and more than 80 percent of those from low-income families—are not proficient readers by the end of third grade.  This has significant and long-term consequences not only for each of those children but for their communities, and for our nation as a whole. If left unchecked, this problem will undermine efforts to end intergenerational poverty, close the achievement gap, and reduce high school dropout rates.  Far fewer of the next generation will be prepared to succeed in a global economy, participate in higher education, or enter military and civilian service.

EduCare was created to help reverse this potentially catastrophic trend by delivering common-sense solutions at the federal, state, and local levels.

EduCare is an interactive program that delivers personalized guidance to women and caregivers throughout their pregnancy and baby’s early childhood up to age 8. With no application to download, EduCare acts as a virtual coach for moms and families. The platform provides age-specific guidance to care for baby and encourage physical and emotional health and wellness, and “Language Nutrition” to support nurturing of literacy and brain development.

Early childhood development is our unifying goal; supporting community solutions to address lack of school readiness and helping parents succeed in their critical roles as first teachers and best advocates.

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Make Reading a Part of Your Christmas Tradition.

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Children will love the one-on-one time and will always remember this holiday experience together. This will help show your child that reading is important to you and can be something you both enjoy together.

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Pre-K Readiness by the Numbers

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Just as there is an achievement gap in school performance, there is a school readiness gap that separates disadvantaged children from their more affluent peers. As early as 18 months, low-income children begin to fall behind in vocabulary development and other skills critical for school success. Parents play an enormous role in closing this gap, as do daycare providers, pediatricians, preschools programs, and the broader community.

Research shows that learning begins long before a child enters kindergarten. Children, even infants soak up words, rhymes, songs, and images. Vocabulary development is particularly important. A child’s health, and the timely recognition of developmental delays, is another critical aspect of school readiness. Doctors, care providers, and preschool teachers play a key role.

61 PERCENT

61 percent of low-income children have no children’s books at home.

30 MILLION

Poor children hear as many as 30 million fewer words than their more affluent peers.

AGE 2

By age 2, poor children are already behind their peers in listening, counting, and other skills essential to literacy.

AGE 3

A child’s vocabulary as early as age 3 can predict third grade reading achievement.

22 LETTERS

By age 5, a typical middle-class child recognizes 22 letters of the alphabet, compared to 9 for a child from a low-income family.

Study Links 3rd Grade Reading, Poverty and High School Graduation

graduation-caps-thrown-in-air-e1489703137922-1A national study released last week shows that students who do not read proficiently by third grade are four times more likely to leave high school without a diploma than proficient readers.                                                    

Poverty compounds the problem: Students who have lived in poverty are three times more likely to drop out or fail to graduate on time than their more affluent peers.

The study, “Double Jeopardy: How Third-Grade Reading Skills and Poverty Influence High School Graduation,” found:

  1. One in six children who are not reading proficiently in third grade do not graduate from high school on time, a rate four times greater than that for proficient readers.
  2. The rates are highest for the low, below-basic readers: 23 percent of these children drop out or fail to finish high school on time, compared to 9 percent of children with basic reading skills and 4 percent of proficient readers.
  3. The below-basic readers account for a third of the sample but three-fifths of the students who do not graduate.
  4. Overall, 22 percent of children who have lived in poverty do not graduate from high school, compared to 6 percent of those who have never been poor. This rises to 32 percent for students spending more than half of the survey time in poverty.
  5. For children who were poor for at least a year and were not reading proficiently in third grade, the proportion of those who don’t finish school rose to 26 percent.  The rate was highest for poor black and Hispanic students, at 31 and 33 percent respectively. Even so the majority of students who fail to graduate are white.
  6. Even among poor children who were proficient readers in third grade, 11 percent still didn’t finish high school. That compares to 9 percent of subpar third graders who were never poor.
  7. Among children who never lived in poverty, all but 2 percent of the best third-grade readers graduated from high school on time.

The longitudinal study was conducted by Donald J. Hernandez, a professor of sociology at Hunter College and the Graduate Center at the City University of New York, and a senior advisor to the Foundation for Child Development. It was commissioned by the Annie E. Casey Foundation. The study confirms the link between third grade scores and high school graduation and, for the first time, breaks down the likelihood of graduation by different reading skill levels and poverty experiences.

“These findings suggest we need to work in three arenas: improving the schools where these children are learning to read, helping the families weighed down by poverty and encouraging better federal, state and local policy to improve the lot of both schools and families,” said Hernandez.

The report recommends aligning quality early education programs with the curriculum and standards in the primary grades; paying better attention to health and developmental needs of young children; and providing work training and other programs that will help lift families out of poverty.

Child Literacy in the US

Improving Literacy in the US

Did you know that only about one third of American fourth-graders are proficient in reading? By fourth grade, if children can’t read at grade level, they’re unlikely to ever catch up.

The outcome is even more alarming if the struggling readers happen to be among the 16 million children living in poverty across America, whose only hope at a brighter future is through education. Half of all low-income fourth-graders score below basic levels on U.S. literacy assessments. And yet, more than 60% of low-income families can’t afford to have books in their homes.

Rethinking Child Literacy in the US

We know that fostering a love of learning early on is key to ensuring our children’s success in school and life. That’s why we are piloting effective school-based programs to disadvantaged students in Georgia, Alabama, and Mississippi. Our literacy program and expanded reading curriculum help children from kindergarten through third grade stay on track developmentally and grow as readers and learners.