Developing Early Language & Literacy
How we read to children is as important as how frequently we read to them" - G. Whitehurst, 1992
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Welcome to the DELL-D Web site!

DELL-D” stands for “Developing Early Language and Literacy in Danville." DELL-D is a 3-year, multi-million dollar project, funded by the U.S. Department of Education through its Early Reading First (ERF) program. We are one of 32 projects funded this year, and the only one funded this year in Illinois!

The overall purpose of Early Reading First is to provide intensive support (professional development, materials, technical assistance) to a small number of early childhood classrooms, with a focus on helping young children learn emergent literacy skills that will later help them to become good readers and to do well in school. The primary focus is children who are at risk for not being as successful as they could be because of family income or other factors that may interfere with their learning or development.

The primary assumption of Early Reading First is that working with teachers to achieve classrooms consistent with what is known from research about the best approaches to early literacy instruction is the best way to improve children’s chances of success in school. Early childhood faculty from the University of Illinois, assisted by DELL-D staff hired through the grant, are providing intensive support and training to teachers in 16 early childhood classes in Danville, and also evaluating the effects of the program on teachers and children. All classes use the TROPHIES emergent literacy curriculum.