TSR! Connect
A Closer Look

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

TSR

NEWS

The 4th Annual Texas School Ready! Early Childhood Summer Institute is taking place in San Antonio on July 9-11, 2014.  Keep up with updates on the conference on our website.

Registration for the Institute is full, but we do have a waiting list.

If you are planning to join us in San Antonio at the conference, be sure to visit the Children's Learning Institute booth!  Look for the TSR banner in the exhibit hall.  We will be talking to TSR participants and collecting stories from teachers and administrators like you for a new video.  We look forward to hearing your TSR story!

End-of-Year Surveys for TSR teachers and administrators were released on May 15.  Please check your email and respond to the EOY surveys.  Information collected in these surveys helps us provide better services to our participating teachers and schools.

Best wishes for a fun and relaxing summer from everyone at TSR!  See you next year!

The next TSR Connect will be launched in September 2014.

Thank You for Another Great Year in TSR!

It's hard to believe that another year has come to a close; it seems like we were just starting the school year, sending materials across the state, and welcoming new teachers to TSR. Before we finish this year and start planning summer activities, we have a quick request.

Please remember to complete your End-of-Year Surveys. All current TSR teachers and administrators should have received an email with a link to your EOY survey two weeks ago. We ask TSR participants to complete these surveys to help us plan for next year. TSR is continually evolving to provide better services to our program participants, something that requires information from you, our participants. Information collected in these surveys helps us design and develop new activities to help you in the classroom and with support from our staff at the Children's Learning Institute and in the field.

On behalf of the TSR staff at CLI and across the state, thank you for all your hard work this year. We know that participating in TSR is a big time commitment, and we truly appreciate your dedication to improving instructional practices in the classroom and helping children in Texas be more prepared for school. Have a wonderful summer!

A Closer Look

Preventing the "Summer Slide"—Let's Keep Children Learning Over the Summer Months

Have you ever heard of the "summer slide" or "summer learning loss?" Each year, children spend about nine months enrolled in school, and three months of summer vacation. When they arrive back at school in the following fall, some children are behind their classmates because they've experienced summer learning loss, also called the summer slide. Summer learning loss occurs when children lose some of the academic skills they learned during the school year. Summer learning loss is more likely to occur with at-risk children, who may not have access to summer camps and activities that encourage learning over the summer. The summer slide is a serious issue—by ninth grade, about two-thirds of the achievement gap in reading can be linked to summer learning loss over time.

This summer slide can also be observed in children between pre-k and kindergarten. Many of the children in TSR classrooms this year will start kindergarten in a few short months. Research shows that children starting kindergarten from low income backgrounds may start the school year behind their more affluent classmates; even if the children showed the similar scores on developmental screenings at the end of pre-k, the summer slide can affect low income children very early in their school careers. A study conducted in Georgia found that children enrolled in preschool programs lost ground on word and letter recognition between the last day of preschool and the first day of kindergarten.

What you can do:

  • If your program will be open during the summer months, continue to integrate school readiness activities into your lessons. Summer is a time for fun (even at school or child care), but it's also a time for learning! Children who attend high-quality programs in the summer are less likely to experience summer learning loss in the months before kindergarten.
  • If your program will be closed during the summer, talk with your parents about the importance of learning during the summer. 
  • Encourage all your parents to read with their children during the summer months. Remind them to visit the library and to look for learning opportunities throughout the summer, like visiting local parks and children's museums, and to talk to their children about their experiences together.
  • Remind parents that summer activities and camps can be learning activities! Encourage parents to choose activities and camps that have an educational component.

Let's help prevent the summer slide together, as a community of teachers, administrators, lead agents, and parents who are committed to school readiness!

A Closer Look

Sharing News from the Field!

It has been a very busy and fulfilling year in TSR this year! We welcomed 1,100 schools, child care centers, and Head Start sites into TSR last fall, positively impacting the school readiness of over 34,000 children in Texas. We've enjoyed learning about the unique experiences of the teachers, programs, and lead agents who participated in TSR this year. Before we wrap up for the summer, we would like to share a great story from our lead agent in Brownsville, Workforce Solutions Cameron!

The Spring 2014 issue of the Workforce Solutions magazine, published by the Texas Workforce Commission, featured a story about how Workforce Solutions Cameron implements TSR. WS Cameron has partnered with TSR since 2003. Click here to read the article from the Solutions magazine! (Scroll to page 10.)

We will be sharing more success stories from the field in next year's issues of the TSR Connect. Contact Us if you'd like to share your TSR story!

TSR LogoCLI | UTHTexas School Ready
Children's Learning Institute at UTHealth
7000 Fannin, Suite 2300
Houston, TX 77030

Learn more about Texas School Ready! visit us at www.texasschoolready.org