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Fresno Community and Business Leaders Launch ‘Talking is Teaching: Talk Read Sing’ Campaign

Local Multi-Media Campaign Joins National Too Small to Fail Initiative to Raise Awareness Among Parents and Caregivers About Early Learning, Boost Vocabulary Among Children

Fresno, CA—Local business and community leaders, including Fresno County Superintendent of Schools, Jim Yovino; Fowler Unified School District Superintendent, Eric Cederquist; Fresno County District Attorney, Lisa Smittcamp; and other community leaders announced today the launch of a new campaign to boost the early brain development and language skills of children in Fresno from birth through age five. The campaign, titled “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” is a community-wide effort with promotion from Too Small to Fail, a joint initiative of Next Generation and the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation.

“Talking is Teaching: Talk Read Sing”, aims to close the “word gap“—a difference of about 30 million words that children in high-income families hear from parents and caregivers by their fourth birthday, compared to those in low-income families. The fewer words children hear and learn, the more likely they are to experience an achievement gap, which persists through the preschool and kindergarten years and has a life-long impact on health and well-being.

Research shows that parents and caregivers can help close the word gap by talking, reading and singing to their children from birth every day. These activities have a profound impact on the early learning of very young children, whose brains develop approximately 80 percent of their capacity by age three.

The “Talking is Teaching: Talk Read Sing” campaign consists of a community-wide multi-media campaign that highlights for parents and caregivers how simple actions done every day from birth—like describing objects seen during a bus ride, asking questions, singing songs, reading aloud, or telling stories—can significantly improve a baby’s ability to build vocabulary and develop their brains. Campaign messages will appear on billboards, bus ads and in paid media spots. Initial funding support for the paid media campaign comes from Granville Homes.

Local organizations, churches, libraries and health care providers will also help distribute “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” materials—including books, CDs and clothing with prompts that encourage parents to talk, read, and sing with their children—directly to parents and caregivers.

For more information, visit www.talkingisteaching.org, or Facebook.  

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About Fresno Grade-Level Reading Coalition

The Fresno Grade-Level Reading Coalition includes community based organizations, schools, local government, businesses and churches throughout Fresno County, who are committed to applying their resources to improving our outcomes for third grade-level reading. 

About Fresno County of Education

The Fresno County Office of Education works to positively impact the lives of the almost 200,000 Valley children it serves. It believes every child, no matter his or her circumstances and abilities, must have access to a quality education in order to thrive. Through FCOE’s departments and services, it supports strong academic programs, career and technical education and the arts. FCOE also provides leadership, services and technical assistance to the county’s 32 school districts and charter schools. It is a safety net for students with specials needs, offering direct services for migrant, special education and court and community schools. 

About Granville Homes

Granville Homes is committed to building homes that feature innovative designs, progressive building technologies and neighborhoods that foster responsible, sustainable growth. Granville has built nearly 6,000 homes in California’s Central Valley spanning more than three decades. Granville's commitment to Fresno includes revitalizing older parts of the city through urban infill projects, including ten multifamily developments in downtown Fresno, comprising of approximately 400 housing units.  

Granville's employees and their families thrive in the knowledge that they provide hope and opportunity to their community, by supporting better schools, responsible uses of land, stewardship of natural resources and healthier, happier and more prosperous neighbors.  Granville's philanthropic endeavors, coupled with its steadfast commitment to superior customer service and "building happiness", are the cornerstones on which it builds for the future. For the trust that our customers and community have placed in us, we are truly grateful, and we pledge to continue to design, build, and serve with love and passion.

 About Too Small to Fail

Too Small to Fail, a joint initiative of the Bill, Hillary and Chelsea Clinton Foundation and Next Generation, aims to help parents, communities and businesses take meaningful actions to improve the health and well-being of children ages zero to five, so that more of America’s children are prepared to succeed in the 21st century.

Too Small to Fail has focused its work on closing the “word gap.” Studies have found that by age four, children in middle and upper income families hear up to 30 million more words than their lower income peers. This disparity in hearing words from parents and caregivers translates directly into a disparity in learning words. And that puts our children born with the fewest advantages even further behind. Among those born in 2001, only 48 percent of poor children started school ready to learn, compared to 75 percent of children from middle-income families.

The “word gap” is a significant but solvable challenge. Too Small to Fail is about parents, caregivers, other concerned individuals, and the private sector coming together to take small, research-based actions with big impacts.

Learn more at www.toosmall.org and on Twitter @2SmalltoFail.