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Grace Place for Children and Families

Bright Beginnings

 

One in five American children grow up functionally illiterate. The mission of Bright Beginnings is to cultivate confident, capable and literate parents prepared to guide their child through the crucial years of early development and successfully prepare them to transition to formal schooling at a level with their peers.

Bright Beginnings is a family literacy program, which has garnered national recognition from the Barbara Bush Foundation for Family Literacy. The parental portion of the program works to cultivate confident, capable and literate parents prepared to guide their child though the crucial years of early development. The early childhood education portion of the program aims to ensure that the children are prepared to enter kindergarten ready to learn.

Bright Beginnings additionally incorporates PACT (Parent and Child Together) time at the close of each day, which provides time to reinforce newly learned practices in the presence of professional teachers. By engaging both the parent and child, the program provides a comprehensive model to create an educational culture beyond the classroom, into the home.

 

The Bright Beginnings program includes:

Beginnings 101

One day a week for the entire school year. Teaches skills, techniques and best practices to parents in order to provide a solid educational foundation for their child.

Beginnings 201

Two days a week for the entire school year. Builds on the skills learned in Beginnings 101, reinforcing and further developing key early learning concepts and best practices.

Mom and Tot Literacy

Four days a week for the entire school year. A comprehensive program designed to accomplish significant improvements in the English language and literacy skills of both parent and child. Mothers attend daily intensive English as a Second Language (ESL) classes.

Extended Learning Opportunities

• Mommy and Me Developmental Playgroup
• Kindergarten Readiness

Early Childhood Education

Bright Beginnings Early Childhood Education (ECE) balances both teacher-directed and child-initiated learning, with an emphasis on responding to children’s learning styles and building on their strengths and interests.

Bright Beginnings ECE offers: 1 one-year-old classroom (part-time class), 1 two-year-old classrooms (part-time class), 2 three-year-old classrooms (one part-time class and one full-time class) and 1 four-year-old classroom (full-time class).

 

GETTING RESULTS

Many of the children we have served in Bright Beginnings are now entering elementary school with improved scores on School Readiness Indicators and making exceptional progress in these early years of formal schooling. Some of the children, who come from homes where English is not the primary language, are entering Kindergarten without the need of extra ESL services due to the Bright Beginnings Mom and Tot English Literacy classes they participated in.

 

PROGRESS REPORT

At mid-year, forty-one percent of mothers have already reached their year end goal.

Sixty-three percent of child students have shown five or more months of verbal and scholastic growth at mid-year.

Fifty percent of child students have shown five or more months of vocabulary and word retrieval growth at mid-year.

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