The first time I've felt included: Identifying inclusive literacy learning in early childhood through the evaluation of Better Beginnings
Place of Publication
School of Education
In this chapter we begin by discussing the concept of inclusion, with a particular focus on inclusion in literacy learning in the early years (birth to five) in Australia. We then consider the research evidence for the potential impact of home literacy practices in the early years on later school and life outcomes, and examine some early childhood family literacy initiatives that aim to help develop young children’s literacy learning. We describe how Better Beginnings, a universal family literacy programme, supports parents/carers and children to build their skills, knowledge and understandings of early literacy. We show how Better Beginnings has operated, adapted and expanded in response to longitudinal systematic evaluations and explain how new programmes have been created to address the specific needs of particular groups of families, with the long-term intent of maximising inclusion for all families of young children in Western Australia. We identify aspects of inclusion, through which diversity is constructed as the norm rather than the exception.