Did you know that singing, reading aloud and turning everyday activities into fun learning games can help young children build a foundation for success in school, work and life? Research shows that 90% of a child’s brain develops in the first five years of life. That’s why United Way of Champaign County is working with partners, schools, child care providers, preschools and afterschool care providers to help children start school ready to succeed.
Early brain development has a lasting impact on a child’s ability to learn and succeed in school and life. The quality of a child’s experiences in the first few years of life helps shape how their brain develops. For example, reading with young children, singing, and having reading material in the home is proven to boost pre-literacy skills. Children who aren’t reading proficiently by 3rd grade are four times more likely to drop out.
That’s why United Way of Champaign County is supporting volunteer programs in our schools that provide kindergartners one-on-one help with reading and math.
And our success goals are encouraging. We are working towards:
- Increasing the number of students in Champaign County who demonstrate kindergarten readiness in at least one area by 10%
- Increasing the number of Black male students who are meeting learning standards in Math and English Language Arts by 10%
- Increasing the number of low-income students who are meeting learning standards in Math and English Language Arts by 10%
But there’s so much more to do. 70% of Unit 4 third graders in this community are not meeting learning standards in third grade English Language Arts. You can make a difference by volunteering or donating to United Way of Champaign County to support early grade level success programs. Contact United Way of Champaign County to get involved.