The Latino Family Literacy Project, a program held in partnership between Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD and the University of North Texas, has wrapped up its second year, and more than 30 families have benefited from the program.
According to UNT, the program works with parents on ways to help their children with literacy and bi-literacy development and establish a reading routine at home with their children.
The families from three C-FB ISD schools, Central Elementary, Sheffield Elementary and McWhorter Elementary, meet with UNT bilingual/ESL pre-service teachers and C-FB ISD teachers once a week throughout the school year.
“They receive 10 sessions … of how to engage their children in reading and literacy in Spanish and English and develop a routine,” said UNT clinical professor Rossana Boyd.
During a session parents interact with teachers, and teachers share books, how they can read those books at home and what discussion questions they can ask their children.
“It’s not only engagement between the teacher and the parent but also between the parents and their children at home,” Boyd said.
Boyd said parents receive a set of dual language books they can take home. In addition each school receives about 150 books, and teachers receive books to place in their classrooms.
The five-year program is part of a $2.7 million grant UNT received from the U.S. Department of Education. The program also helps UNT students who are pursuing teaching certification in bilingual education and English as a second language (ESL) education. The students worked with 15 teachers in grades Pre-K through second grade from C-FB ISD to learn how to effectively assist Latino parents on bi-literacy development.
Boyd said in its inaugural year, 72 families participated. Although it’s hard to say how many will participate next year, the program is funded to host up to 75 families, she said.
The Latino Family Literacy Project will begin again in September.