Early Literacy Activities Before Beginning Primary School
PIRLS has included an Early Literacy Activities scale in each assessment, and the results consistently show a strong relationship with achievement. The scale is described under “About the Scale.” Exhibit 4.5 shows that 39 percent of the students had parents who Often engaged them in early literacy activities and an additional 58 percent had parents who Sometimes engaged them in early literacy activities, with the students in the Often category having higher average achievement (529 vs. 505, respectively). In several countries, a small percentage of students (3% on average) had parents who Never or Almost Never engaged them in early literacy activities and these students typically had low average reading achievement (419).
As some good news, PIRLS shows a trend toward more parental involvement in their children’s literacy development. In 16 countries, there was an increase between PIRLS 2011 and 2016 in the time spent on early literacy activities and only 1 country had a decrease.