We believe that communities are responsible for their children’s success. We partner with key stakeholders like schools, educators, community groups, organizations, businesses and parents/caregivers to become part of the solution as we work towards sustainable literacy rates in the KGO and beyond. Our vision is that every child in every community will have the skills and confidence they need to make positive choices for their lives and their futures. When children are given a strong and solid foundation in literacy, they’re more likely to succeed as they grow and reach new educational and career milestones.
Camesha Cox is an Ontario-certified teacher with a Master’s degree from the University of Toronto. She’s been a resident of the KGO community for over 25 years, and she’s deeply connected to both its vibrant diversity and its educational challenges.
In 2010, she successfully ran a school-wide literacy intervention program for high school students in London, UK who were still reading at a primary level. This experience taught her that educational programs are much more effective when they reach beyond the classroom and are integrated into all facets of a student’s life, supported through the efforts of parents and caregivers at home. When she returned to Canada, she knew that her own community could benefit from a similar approach.
Having spent years working in youth employment programs in the KGO, she had witnessed firsthand the devastating long-term effects of low literacy rates amongst her peers, and she knew that EQAO test scores were chronically low. Camesha founded the TRP to address these challenges and make learning exciting for both kids and their families.
How We Do It
The Reading Partnership is a registered Canadian charity that offers high impact, rigorously evaluated initiatives. We promote a love of reading and learning in children ages 4-14, prioritizing low- income, high-potential communities with a high representation of Black, Indigenous and racialized families and where there are systemic barriers to learning.
We offer a number of programs and educational resources for families to support them in helping their children build literacy skills:
Letter Sound Cards, Sound Word Cards and Sight Word Cards help children develop strategies to problem-solve while reading. Letter Sound Cards teach them letter names and sounds and Sound Word Cards demonstrate how those letters are used to form words. Finally, the Sight Word Cards help them to commit words to memory that otherwise can’t be sounded out or solved. These three approaches combined teach children to read independently in a way that’s fun and engaging.
Tiny Tales and the Letter Colouring Book allow children to practice letter sounds, sight words and sound words. Through comprehension questions and word practice, Tiny Tales combine all the tools of the Literacy Cards into engaging stories that feature diverse characters. Tiny Tales are also available in colouring book format so kids can add their own creativity to each story. The Letter Colouring Book encourages them to make the connection between letters and pictures that start with those letters, as well as the sounds those letters make.
Brought to life by our 360 Stories program, each anthology is a compilation of tales that were written, illustrated, edited and published by kids aged 9-12 and offers an exciting glimpse into their world. Developed in partnership with Story Planet, each book is a chance to cheer and support up-and-coming authors in our community.