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What is Early Words?

More about Early Words

Early Words is a Canadian Children's Literacy Foundation program that connects key professionals with resources so they can help families start babies and young children on the road to reading.

We’ve begun working with healthcare professionals, since they are a universal point of contact for families with little ones. We provide the information, training and other resources to make it easy to help families with early literacy. 

How does it work?
The Early Words program collaborates with clinics, hospitals and communities to provide families with critical support in building baby brains to lay a foundation for literacy. The goal is to inspire families to start young children on a joyful reading journey by surrounding them with words right from birth.

We do this by:
  • Supporting healthcare practitioners in embedding literacy into their practice through training developed in tandem with health and literacy leaders.
  • Facilitating the selection of culturally reflective, developmentally appropriate, and good quality children’s books to build families’ libraries.
  • Providing resources to families, clinics and providers to ensure literacy development in the beginning stages of life is tackled with confidence.
How can I participate?
We are looking for partners to take the Early Words program to more communities in Canada. If any of these statements describe your approach to literacy, reach out to us.
  • ‘My community needs it.’ The families accessing my clinic or hospital face barriers that make it hard to get their little ones ready for school and I believe a literacy program can help.
  • ‘I am already doing it.’ I oversee a literacy effort in the clinic or hospital where I work, but I could use some help.
  • ‘I am not sure how to get started.’ I believe that healthcare providers at my clinic or hospital would be interested in training on early literacy and how to embed literacy into their practice, but I need help in providing that training.
  • ‘I believe in it.’ I understand the importance of building literacy skills starting from birth and I am passionate about supporting families to build these skills with their children.
  • ‘I am connected to it.’ I have some expertise in the work of early literacy and I have a grassroots knowledge of my community. 

Reach Out