Impactful community-based literacy projects

For Immediate Release
Fri, 10/23/2020


Rob Christopher

Marketing Coordinator

ALA Publishing

American Library Association


CHICAGO — Inspired by the Library of Congress Literacy Awards Program and its applicants, which have showcased and disseminated innovative literacy initiatives across the country and around the world since 2013, Lesley S. J. Famer’s “Impactful Community-Based Literacy Projects” provides evidence-based practice guidelines for librarians and educators. To optimize results, the projects in this book published by ALA Editions blend early literacy benefits, fundamental reading skills, and other foundational concepts with culture- or community-specific sensitivity and leveraging. They’re adaptable based on age, audience, size, resources, and budget; and most importantly, they address social inequities and foster cross-culture interactions. Inside, readers will find:

  • detailed profiles of dozens of successful literacy projects, which include such activities as oral storytelling, the Parent-Child Home Program, a repository of multilingual children’s stories, accessible web readers, personal tutors, and many more; 
  • an overview of universal steps to literacy, explaining how people learn, generic reading skill development, human developmental issues, and habits of literacy;
  • research-based factors for impactful literacy projects;
  • discussion of the importance and role of literacy partners such as families, schools and universities, libraries, government agencies, nonprofit organizations, and for-profit entities;
  • advice on project planning, including needs assessment, goals and objectives, literacy review, target audience, project personnel, resources, setting and timing, communication, support, implementation, communication, and continuous assessment and improvement; and
  • guidance on building capacity, empowering the community, and sustaining a culture of literacy.

Dr. Farmer, professor at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB), coordinates the Teacher Librarian Program and manages the CSU Information and Communication Technology (ICT) Literacy Project Literacy Project. She has worked as a librarian in K–12 school settings as well as in public, special, and academic libraries. She chaired the Special Libraries Association’s Education Divisions and IFLA’s School Library Section. She has been honored with several professional association awards, including the Ken Haycock Award for Promoting Librarianship. A frequent presenter, she has published numerous professional books, book chapters, and articles.

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