Literacy, Language and Learning

Literacy and language are fundamental to our children's expression of themselves, their ability to communicate and central to building relationships with others.  As children grow up, literacy becomes the key to unlocking their potential as learners, their doorway to active and meaningful contribution to their community and society. Literacy and language is continuously developed across the life cycle.

Literacy is a fundamental child rights issue and without adequate literacy levels, every dimension of life can be compromised. In disadvantaged communities; literacy and language development has to be a whole community responsibility. The levels of poverty and risk of poverty mean that children across the community are at higher risk of significant language and literacy delay with such delays negatively impacting on their educational outcomes, behaviour and mental health.

Literacy and language development starts from birth, nurtured and cultivated by parents and other care givers in their interactions with babies and toddlers. In the pre school years, language and pre literacy skills is further encouraged and supported through active learning in quality early years contexts.  Throughout school, literacy and language is proactively taught and consistently integrated across the curriculum.  After school and out of school there are countless opportunities for language and literacy to be fostered by parents, extended family and carers, and for continued language and literacy development to be promoted in after-school clubs, in youth and sports work, and across the community.

youngballymun is actively engaged in promotion and advocacy for children's literacy and language development from infancy, through the life cycle, across the community.  Our cross-sectoral integrated service plan includes:

  • Infant and toddler development programme with Speech and Language Therapists together with Public Health Nurses to promote attachment and parent-child interactions.  Click Ready, Steady, Grow for more information.

  • Evidence-based language and literacy programmes for parents and children like Hanen 'You make the difference', Story Sacks and Incredible Book Club.

  • Parent-focussed awareness raising and skills training to support for literacy and language development (Talk and Play Everyday, Baby and Me, Breakfast Buddies).

  • Strong focus on language and pre literacy development skills in pre school settings guided by Siolta quality framework and High Scope curriculum. Click Learning Years for more information.

  • Participative and interactive sessions, bringing parents into schools to work collaboratively with teachers and school staff on initiatives like Story Time, and Language towards Literacy. 

  • Providing resources and supports for children's language and literacy development out of school and after school such as integrating a literacy focus into community projects, distribution of holiday activity packs and the production of Big Dreams, a family book about reading.

  • Building capacity of teachers to integrate proven language and literacy methodologies (First Steps and the Balanced Literacy Framework) into teaching across the curriculum. Click Write Minded for more information.

  • Building pro-social behaviour and positive mental health to ensure behavioural and mental health difficulties are prevented and addressed Click Incredible Years for more information.