Literacy Development Programs in Primary Care SIG

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Annual Report

Co-chairs:  Robert Needlman, Ellen Stevenson, Alan Mendelsohn

SIG purpose/mission:
The Early Literacy Promotion SIG provides an opportunity to collaborate on early literacy and parenting research to help inform community outreach, health promotion, and health policy activity in these areas.

Current SIG goals:

  • To facilitate exchange of ideas between researchers, educators and advocates in best practices in early literacy promotion
  • To maintain the presence of early literacy promotion as a focus at academic training centers
  • To support the development of pediatricians who are able to integrate early literacy promotion as a social determinant of health in their communities

Annual summary:
The Literacy Development Programs in Primary Care SIG session at the 2017 Pediatric Academic Societies (PAS) Meeting was well attended. The session began with a presentation from Dr. Heidi Feldman, Stanford University.  She presented on CNS development in premature infants, and its implications for language and literacy.

We also heard from past and present Reach Out and Read Young Investigator awardees. This year's YIA awardee, Tiffany Munzer, described her project that investigated differences between e-book and conventional book reading aloud.  Sai Iyer, last year's YIA awardee, presented her work on developing an assessment of emergent literacy that can be administered within the 4-year health supervision visit.

The SIG wrapped up with an open discussion that included brainstorming topics for next year's PAS meeting and potential new SIG names.   As SIG efforts include early literacy promotion efforts that extend to the newborn nursery and out into the community as well as a focus on parenting interactions, we discussed changing the name to be more inclusive.  After much discussion, we settled on shortening the name to the "Early Literacy and more"...
For the coming year, we'll work on sharing new ideas and supporting Young Investigators and those whose projects are ongoing.  

Thanks, everyone, for joining us in 2017!

Other groups:
AAP Council on Early Childhood
SIGS: Advocacy, Developmental and behavioral pediatrics, Underserved,
Health Literacy

August 2014 Newsletter Article

At our SIG meeting on May 4th in Vancouver, Tom Boyce, professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco, was our keynote speaker. He is a world-renowned expert on stress and its effects on child development and health, and he gave us a review of the psychobiology of adversity, covering 25 years of discovery, and culminating in 5 hypotheses relating ANS reactivity and stress vulnerability to the possible protective effects of reading aloud. One participant commented that Dr. Boyce's talk "blew my mind." I think we all felt that way.

We also heard from past and present Reach Out and Read Young Investigator awardees, as well as one additional study in progress. This year's YIA awardees are: John Hutton (fellow, University of Cincinnati): Neuroimaging of Children Exposed to ROR; and Jayna Schumacher (fellow, Boston University): "Use of E-Books to Support Emerging Readers from Families with Low Socioeconomic Status." Both are worthy, challenging, limit-stretching topics.

Attending were 29 colleagues, 8 of whom were repeaters from 2013. The SIG wrapped up with an open discussion which (for several of us) continued through lunchtime. For the coming year, we'll work on organizing our research "roadmap," supporting new Young Investigators and those whose projects are ongoing, and refreshing our SIG leadership. Thanks, everyone, for making 2014 such a success!

SIG Co-Chairs:
Perri Klass

Robert Needlman

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Current SIG Co-Chairs:

Robert Needlman, MD
2500 MetroHealth Drive
Cleveland, OH 44109
Phone: (216) 77-4288

Ellen Stevenson, MD, MPH
707 SW Gaines St, CDRC-P
Portland, OR 97239
Phone: (503) 494-6513




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