Early Literacy

Great Start’s Early Literacy Council promotes a culture of reading for everyone.  Reading skills are indicators of academic success for students of all ages. Our families must be given an opportunity to have books in their homes.  With today’s economy it is not always in the budget to purchase children’s books.  Promoting families reading together in our communities is a powerful and actionable goal that fits into Great Start’s mission and purpose.

Great Start is proud to implement two leading national early literacy initiatives that are serving over 1,500 children in Dickinson and Iron Counties:

The Dickinson Iron Great Start Early Literacy Council collaborates and works with families to promote the following Early Literacy Council 2017 to 2018 –

•  Dolly Parton Imagination Library
•  Reach Out and Read
•  Raise A Reader
•  Home Visitor Books For Visits
•  Child Care Provider Books In Bags
•  B.O.B. – Books On Bus
•  Book Mailboxes
•  Community Event Books
•  Parent Strong Meeting Books
•  Reading Circles
•  March Reading Month Classroom Readers
•  March Book Drive

When children are enrolled in the Imagination Library, free books are mailed to children’s homes monthly from ages 0 to age 5.  By mailing high quality, age-appropriate books directly to their homes,  children become excited about books and they feel the magic that books can create.  The Dolly Parton Imagination Library ensures that every child has books, regardless of family income. The only requirement for participation in the Dickinson Iron Dolly Parton Imagination Library is for parents/guardians to complete two forms: (1) Imagination Library Registration Form; and (2) Imagination Library Program Survey.

When children read at a young age, lifelong reading habits are formed.  True to Great Start’s early literacy motto:  Once a reader, always a reader!  Since the initial program launch in the United States, Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library has gone from just a few dozen books to over 80,000,000 books mailed to children in the United States, into Canada and across the proverbial pond into the United Kingdom! Currently over 1600 local communities provide the Imagination Library to over 1,000,000 children each and every month. Already statistics and independent reports have shown Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library drastically improves early childhood literacy for children enrolled in the program. Further studies have shown improved reading test scores.  All Imagination Library Children’s Books are research-based and age-appropriate books and published by Penguin Publishing.  Penguin Publishing is a global leader in children’s publishing.


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