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Resources for early childhood educators and families

Mother and toddler sitting together looking at a tablet.

Welcome to our resources for professionals and families supporting young children. Below you will find answers to FAQs as well as links to literacy resources and activities for young children.

What are Accessible Educational Materials and why are they important?

Accessible Educational Materials are materials that are designed or enhanced in a way that makes them usable across the widest range of learners, including young learners. These materials are available in a variety of formats, such as large print, Braille and audio, so that they are accessible to a wide variety of learners.

Bookshare is the world’s largest collection of accessible educational materials with over 1 Million titles including picture books and

Who are our partners?

Bookshare partners with leaders in the field of Early Childhood Education to support our youngest learners with disabilities.

The STEM Innovation for Inclusion in Early Childhood Center (STEMIE) is focused on developing and enhancing the knowledge base on engagement in STEM and to increase engagement for young children with disabilities in STEM opportunities. Learn more about STEM education and the STEMIE Center.

What is STEM?

STEM is an abbreviation for four related areas of study: Science, Technology, Engineering and Math. Each of these are closely related and have many similarities, and help children become innovators problem-solvers, and critical thinkers. Children of all ages can engage in activities that teach them about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics; it is not just for older students.

Evidenced-based strategies for young children and emergent readers

Below are some suggested strategies and ideas to facilitate emergent literacy development:

Reading Comprehension:

As detailed in the National Reading Panel from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, comprehension is critically important to development of children’s reading skills and therefore their ability to learn and retain information.

The resources library in The Center for Parent Information and Resources or CIPR, has resources to support parents on various topics, including Literacy. The Institute of Education Sciences (IES) provides evidence based strategies to support reading comprehension in young and emergent readers. Below are some evidenced based strategies focused on improving reading comprehension from this document:

  • Make Predictions and Ask Questions: Before you read, model how to make predictions about what the story is about. Ask questions throughout the story about what the characters are doing and why.
  • Make connections and Retelling: Highlight something in the text that you experience in real life and retell the story in your own words.
  • Read Aloud: Reading aloud to a child expands their imagination and understanding of the world. It also helps them develop language and listening skills.
  • Talk about what you are reading before, during and after reading.

Evidence-based literacy activities for young children and emergent readers

Paths to Technology, from Perkins is designed to assist educators and families in learning and staying current on ever-changing technology for students with visual impairments and blindness. They provide a library of resources designed to define and disseminate best practices, training, and support for teachers of the visually impaired, braille transcribers, other education professionals, parents, and students themselves. Learn more about Paths to Technology from Perkins.

Paths to Technology has created a Book Library with specific activities that are paired with Bookshare Books that parents can utilize to support their learners with visual impairments.

The STEM Innovation for Inclusion in Early Childhood Center (STEMIE) has created “Story Book Conversations” and curated lists of STEM focused books in a variety of genres including Learn more about Story Book Conversations and curated book lists from STEMIE.

Reading lists for young children and emergent readers

Below are reading lists curated by the Bookshare Collections Team for young and emergent readers:

Early Childhood Picture Books: Popular titles of various picture books

Picture Books to be read to young children: This collection is a sampler of of books for emergent readers to read, and books for adults to read to emergent readers. Each is accessible and contains image and audio descriptions

I Can Read! Leveled Reader Series:  A collection of leveled readers for beginning young readers published by Harper Collins

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