What is Ready For School?

RFS is a 20 week family literacy program for limited/non-English speaking 3 and 4 year old preschoolers and their parents. Both the preschooler and parent participate. We model for the parent how to teach the skills to the children. Non-English speaking preschoolers start school way behind their American counterparts, so this program was designed to help prepare the children with basic skills and to model skills and behaviors they will experience in school.

Who does Ready For School serve?

Primarily we have served the refugee community in Fort Worth but we have also had others use the program in various forms in Houston and North Carolina. Over the last 6 years we have had over 200 families participate in the program in 5 different apartment complexes. We hold the classes weekly in the apartment complexes where the refugees have been resettled. We have had children from Burma, Iraq, Afghanistan, Sudan, Congo, Bhutan, Eritrea and Ethiopia participate in the program.

How will this year be different?

Due to Covid there will be no in-person classes. We have video taped the lessons and posted them on YouTube. We will weekly deliver a bag with the book, learning activities and a treat to each family and then will send the parent a text with the link to the video. The parent and preschooler will watch the lesson and do the activities in their apartment. It’s not the best way to teach preschoolers but we feel it is the best for our current situation. Our hope is that perhaps they can watch the video over and over through out the week and have the concepts reinforced. 
If you missed the recent Literacy Connexus/Literacy
Texas Symposium on October 24th, we will be sharing
out information over the next several newsletters. How 
do you teach ESL students who lack literacy in their first 
language? Taynim Johnson has suggestions for you. She
has been researching this topic through a grant funded
by the Dollar General Literacy Foundation. Attached you
will find her presentation at the Symposium. Contact 
Taynim for more information:  Taynim@literacyconnexus.org.