The Hanen I’m Ready!™ Program for Building Early Literacy in the Home

To have the best possible start in school, children need a strong foundation of early literacy skills. These are the skills that prepare children to read, write, and use the kind of language they’ll be expected to use in school.   

The Hanen I’m Ready!™ program shows parents of 3–5 year olds how they can use everyday interactions and book reading to build the following essential early literacy skills:

  • Conversation   
  • Vocabulary  
  • Story comprehension  
  • Print knowledge  
  • Sound awareness
Like all Hanen parent programs, the strategies parents learn in I’m Ready! can be added to the everyday interactions and book reading they already do with their child, making the learning natural and fun.

Program Components

The I’m Ready! Program is offered by Hanen Certified speech-language pathologists or early childhood education professionals around the world. The program may be offered in-person or online.

In-person Program Components Online Program Components
  • Six training sessions, plus an Orientation Session, for parents in small, personalized groups.
  • Simultaneous sessions where children continue to build their language and literacy skills with the help of trained support staff.
  • Practice opportunities at the end of each session with parents and children together. Parents receive individualized coaching from the program leader and support staff.
  • Six training sessions, plus a live online or pre-recorded orientation session.
  • Three individual sessions with the program leader, parent and child. During these sessions, parents are videorecorded using program strategies with their child, and they received individualized feedback and coaching. 

Which Children are Appropriate for I'm Ready!?

I’m Ready! is ideal for children who are typically developing, at risk of a language delay, or with a mild language delay.

Benefits of Taking the I’m Ready!™ Program

Practical strategies you can use in everyday situations

Fun for children and easy for parents to use, all the strategies in I’m Ready! can help children learn the early literacy skills that are so important before starting school.

Here’s an example of an I’m Ready! strategy that can be used during shared book reading:

“Shoot for the SSTaRS”

On any given day a child hears thousands of words. When helping children learn new words, it’s important to make the word sparkle – highlight it somehow. To make new words sparkle during book reading, try using Shoot for the SSTARS:

Stress the new word to focus the child’s attention
Show the child what the word means
Tell the child what the word means
Relate the word to the child’s personal experiences and knowledge, as well as to other words and situations
Say it again – and read the book again

A research-based program

The I’m Ready! Program was inspired by research that says:
  • Children who start school with higher levels of literacy go on to have higher levels of academic success.
  • Children learn these skills best during language-rich everyday interactions about the things that interest them.
  • Parents and early childhood educators play a critical role in fostering the kinds of interactions that help children learn.
Like all of Hanen’s programs, I’m Ready! was developed by expert speech-language pathologists and is grounded in extensive research. The strategies found in I’m Ready! are drawn from the evidence-based ABC and Beyond program, an in-service education program for early childhood educators.  

Read the research behind the I’m Ready! program

The chance to connect with other parents

Throughout the program, parents share ideas and turn to each other for support, maximizing the potential for learning opportunities – as well as new friendships!

Program Resources

During the program, parents use the Hanen guidebook, I’m Ready!™ How to Prepare Your Child for Reading Success. Full of practical examples showing parents using the strategies in action, this guidebook helps to cement their learning during the program, and provides a resource they can always come back to when it’s over.

Parents waiting to attend a program can purchase the guidebook in advance to give their learning a head start and gain practical strategies they can start using with their child right away.

Finding an I’m Ready!™ Program

Hanen professionals who are certified in I’m Ready! may offer the program in person or online, and may also use the program content in their day-to-day work with families.  You can use the link below to search for a Hanen Certified Professional.  

Find a Hanen Professional  
If you're a professional interested in offering this program, learn more about the I'm Ready! workshop.

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