About Us


What is Read On Arizona?

Read On Arizona is a statewide, public/private partnership of agencies, philanthropic organizations, and community stakeholders committed to creating an effective continuum of services to improve language and literacy outcomes for Arizona’s children from birth through age eight over the next ten years.

Why is early literacy important?

Reading is the major foundational skill for all school-based learning, and reading proficiency by third grade is a crucial milestone in a child’s future academic success. Third grade reading level is a strong predictor of ninth grade course performance, high school graduation and college attendance. According to the National Research Council for the National Academies, “Academic success, as defined by high school graduation, can be predicted with reasonable accuracy by knowing someone’s reading skill at the end of third grade. A person who is not at least a modestly skilled reader by that time is unlikely to graduate from school.”

To achieve this important milestone, kids need to be on track for success from the time they start school. Research shows that children entering kindergarten without the skills they need to succeed in school rarely read proficiently by third grade.

How does early language development play a part in early literacy?

Early language abilities are directly related to later reading abilities, and children develop these skills from birth. At four-to-five months, a child recognizes the sound pattern of his/her name. At eight months, a child distinguishes word patterns. At nine months, a child can hone in on native language and essentially becomes a language specialist. Language development continues for toddlers and preschool age children, and the amount and diversity of verbal stimulation a child experiences affects the development of processing speed, later vocabulary and executive function. Preschoolers whose parents read to them, tell stories and sing songs tend to have richer language outcomes. They develop larger vocabularies, become better readers and perform better in school.

As a parent what can I do at home to support early literacy?

Every parent needs to know that one of the most important things they can do is give their children words. Between one and three is the time of most rapid language and vocabulary acquisition. The 30 million word gap identified by research begins at about 16 months. Reading is highly dependent on language ability, so children need to hear lots of words and have multiple opportunities to use them.

How do I become a Read On City or Community?

Become a Read On Community (PDF)

What is summer loss?

Most Arizona students attend school around 180 days each year.  During that time, most students progress along a learning trajectory and grow in terms of knowledge and skills.  However, when summer break comes along, the formal learning process often ends and students stop engaging in educational activities.  Research shows that this results in many students, particularly those from low-income families, experiencing learning losses.  The summer achievement loss is particularly evident in reading ability.  Learn more about summer reading loss at MetaMetrics, Inc.

What is a Lexile reading number?

The Lexile® Framework for Reading is a unique resource for accurately matching readers with text. Unlike other measurement systems, the Lexile Framework evaluates reading ability based on actual assessments, rather than generalized age or grade levels.

The true power of the Lexile Framework is its ability to measure both reading ability and text complexity on the same developmental scale. Other reading level formulas just measure text. It’s like shopping for shoes and only knowing the sizes available. You need to know both the size of the shoe and the foot to have a good fit.

The Lexile Framework is based on more than 20 years of research funded by the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development. Our distinct approach to measuring readers and texts has resulted in Lexile adoptions by departments of education in nearly half the states and school districts in all 50 states, and our global reach continues to expand.

Tens of millions of students worldwide now receive a Lexile measure that helps them to find targeted text from a universe of more than 400 million articles, books and websites. Today, Lexile measures are recognized as the most widely used reading metrics. They are powerful tools for connecting learners of all ages with materials at the right level of challenge and monitoring their progress toward goals and standards.