The Ready Children Equation
Wyoming Kids First recognizes the value in using a readiness equation first introduced by the National School Readiness Initiative. The equation encompasses multiple domains of early development, and focuses on critical elements that – together – support the holistic well-being and success of children. Each component plays a vital role in the preparation of our children for success in the first year of school and beyond; no one component can stand on its own.
“Readiness,” then, describes the capabilities of children, families, physical and mental health organizations, early care and education environments, schools and communities to best promote and provide for children’ success in their first year of school and beyond.
A ready child is prepared cognitively, physically, socially and personally across many domains: language, literacy, social emotional, social studies, physical development and health, science, logic and reasoning, creative arts expression, mathematics, and approaches to learning. Children develop holistically: growth and development in one area depends upon development in other areas.
A ready family has adults who recognize and value that they are the first and most important teacher in a child’s life. Ready families take responsibility for their child’s or children’s preparation for success in school and life through direct, frequent, positive involvement and engagement. They provide steady and supportive relationships, ensure safe and reliable environments, promote good health, and foster curiosity and excitement about learning and self-control.
Ready health systems provide children and families access to high-quality preventative, continuous and early intervention services to meet their physical, mental, emotional, oral, vision, hearing and nutrition needs. Quality heath services are facilitated by skilled professionals who engage in family support and treatment, and are sensitive to cultural values and individual differences.
Ready early care and education professionals accept all children and provide high-quality learning environments by engaging the whole community. A ready early care and education environment provides all children with opportunities to build a positive foundation for confidence, knowledge, skills and abilities. Children in ready early care and education environments are led by skilled professionals who recognize, reinforce and extend children’s strengths, and who are sensitive to cultural values and individual differences.
Ready schools accept all children and provide a seamless transition to formal school environments by engaging the whole community. A ready school welcomes all children with opportunities to enhance and build confidence in their knowledge, skills and abilities. Children in ready schools are led by skilled teachers who recognize, reinforce and extend children’s strengths, and who are sensitive to cultural values and individual differences.
Ready communities play an essential part in supporting families in their role as primary stewards of children’s readiness. Ready communities, including businesses, nonprofits, faith-based organizations, social service and health organizations, community groups, and local governments, must work together to support children’s school and life success by providing families affordable access to information, services, supports and opportunities.
 Getting Ready: Findings from the National School Readiness Indicators Initiative. (2005). Prepared by Rhode Island Kids Count; A 17-state Partnership Sponsored by the David and Lucile Packard Foundation, the Kauffman Foundation and the Ford Foundation.