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Research shows the benefits of early childhood education on math, reading

Education Dive – Tara García Mathewson

“The AIR research re-emphasizes the importance of structured early childhood education. The Obama administration’s Education Department has pushed for an expansion of high-quality early childhood programs and many cities and states have allocated more money toward these efforts in recent years. The study is interesting in showing benefits for children in homecare arrangements that are not with their own families when it comes to math and other measures of children’s ability to learn, even short of a structured learning environment, but homecare of any sort puts children behind in reading.”(more)

4 ways to keep your kid’s brains active during the summer – Staff Writer

“School is out for the summer. Kids have spent the last nine months cramming as much knowledge as they can into their developing brains. Yet they can lose a lot of those new skills during the lull of the summertime. “There are all sorts of studies that talk about kids losing skills over the summer if they don’t continue to practice what they learned from the previous year,” said Jody Triptow, education specialist at Primary Children’s Hospital. Reading fluency and comprehension and math literacy and skills are some areas that can weaken during this time. Here are four ways to keep your children intellectually active.”(more)

United Way says early education can help low scoring third graders in reading

WIVB – Evan Anstey

“A new United Way report card calls for investment in early childhood programs to combat low reading test scores in Erie County. Buffalo and Lackawanna ranked last in Erie County with 12 percent of third graders scoring at grade level. The report was based on state assessment tests given last year in districts across Erie County. The New York State average for third-graders who can read at their grade-level proficiency is 31 percent. Erie County’s average is just under that, at 30 percent.”(more)

7 Benefits of Reading With Your Kid Beyond Academics

Romper – Lindsay Mack

“Sure, reading aloud to your child is a good way to set him up for academic success later on in life. But the benefits of reading with your kid extend beyond academics. Story time can help expand your child’s imagination, prepare him for new life experiences, and even develop empathy. Basically? Reading can only benefit your kid’s development…Just a few minutes of daily reading can make an impact…From vocabulary growth to sensory development, books will only give your kid a boost.”(more)

Grimm & Co’s magical approach to helping children write stories

The Guardian – Alison Parkes

“It’s no mean feat to inspire a group of 30 10- and 11-year-olds to run across a room and start writing. But run they do. Propped against plaster pillars, perched on a leather sofa, laid on ornamental grass, stories pour out of these children. This morning they have entered a magical apothecary (to gasps of wonder), passed through a secret doorway (more gasps), climbed a winding staircase and ended in a room laid out like an enchanted garden. With the help of volunteer story mentors they’ve imagined an eagle-winged mouse that smells of cheese and a semi-invisible blue bird with a monkey’s head and clown’s shoes. The main action takes place in a regenerating block of cheese. Somehow a shark has been introduced for the cliffhanger. Now it’s up to each child to decide how their story will end.”(more)

The old-school skill that every kid should learn if they want to be smarter

Business Insider – Minda Zetlin, Inc.

“If you have kids in school, how much time do they spend learning cursive handwriting? Probably not much, especially if they’re beyond first grade. The Common Core standards dominating education these days only call for teaching legible handwriting, and only in kindergarten and first grade. After that, students spend their time learning to use keyboards. That might seem like a good thing…But a growing body of scientific evidence seems to show that the all the older people lamenting the death of penmanship are on to something. Whether or not they actually do much writing by hand in later life, learning to write by hand and do it well — in cursive as well as print — has measurable benefits for kids’ brains. Here are just a few:”(more)