BookSmart is a free digital library of books appropriate for children 3-12 years old. It features hundreds of books in numerous languages, including English and Spanish. It can be used to enhance in- and out-of-school reading, to help parents engage in conversations around books, and to provide book access and programming for out-of-school clubs and libraries. This platform can be viewed as a website or downloaded as an app on any electronic device that uses iOS or Android software. No personal information is required to access these digital books. Simply visit booksmart.world/facct to get started, or click the link below.
To ensure children are prepared for an increasingly complex workforce, they must have a strong foundation. The Florida Chamber Foundation’s Florida Business Alliance for Early Learning Project has been working to promote the importance of quality early learning and raise awareness among business leaders. A child’s future success may also be impacted by where they live. Research shows many students living in high poverty areas have fewer resources and may perform at lower academic levels than children living in higher socioeconomic income areas. The Florida Chamber Foundation’s Florida Prosperity Project is uniting business leaders behind the effort to create equity of opportunity and end generational poverty in Florida one zip code at a time. The Florida Gap Map brings together the important work of the Florida Prosperity Project and the Florida Business Alliance for Early Learning Project. This online tool gives business and community leaders throughout Florida important information on the schools in their community.
From kindergarten through third grade, children are learning to read. Then in fourth grade, they transition to use reading to learn. A comprehensive state early literacy policy can ensure all students enter fourth grade with the foundational reading skills they need to learn, graduate and succeed. ExcelinEd’s comprehensive early literacy policy empowers students with the ability to read and opens doors and opportunities each student deserves. This policy toolkit offers resources and tools to support states working to advance a comprehensive early literacy policy.
New Worlds Reading is Florida’s free at-home literacy program to help eligible VPK through 5th grade students in Florida bolster literacy skills, build reading confidence, and foster a lifelong love of reading. Each month, eligible kids receive a free book tailored to their interests with resources and activities for caregivers and children to use together. The UF Lastinger Center for Learning administers the program and selected Scholastic as a partner. Books are selected in collaboration with the Florida Department of Education and are available in English, Spanish, Haitian Creole, and braille. For more information, visit newworldsreading.com.
The UF Lastinger Center for Learning improves the quality of teaching, learning, and caregiving. We research, develop, and scale equitable educational innovations for adults and children that put all learners on trajectories for lifelong success. We provide professional development in early learning, literacy, and mathematics.