About the Early Words project

Photo of a man reading to a girlThe Early Words project was created to help parents in Western Sydney prepare their children before school for the world of reading and writing and was officially launched in 2006.

Families NSW, an initiative of the NSW government designed to support the State's families, set goals for the program, and chose Blacktown-based Children First to implement it.

The Early Words development team included an Occupational Therapist, a Primary School Teacher and a Speech Pathologist, and has drawn on expertise from pediatricians, early childhood educators, other early literacy projects and a host of other people too numerous to mention.

Resources included tipsheets, posters, fridge magnets and DVDs. They were available at no cost to families living in the local government areas in western Sydney of Auburn, Baulkham Hills, Blacktown, Blue Mountains, Hawkesbury, Holroyd, Parramatta and Penrith.

They were distributed through antenatal clinics, community health centres, libraries and early childhood centres.

The printed resources were translated into nine community languages and, together with the local Aboriginal community, resources in written and spoken Aboriginal English were produced, with photos of local families.

Photo of Eddie the EchidnaFunding has now finished for the production of the resources. Aboriginal resources are available to download on our Aboriginal website.

All other resources are available to download from our website.

Eddie, the Echidna, our mascot is also available to visit local events to help promote the Early Words.

The Early Words Toolkit is an online training program for families to learn more about getting their children ready to read and write.

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