Parent Resources

You have the power to build your child’s brain – right from birth!

In 2016 RTSB partnered with the Bezos Family Foundation and its Vroom initiative. New science tells us our children’s first years are when they develop the foundation for all future learning. Every time we connect with them, it’s not just their eyes that light up—it’s their brains too. That’s why RTSB wants all parents to take advantage of all Vroom has to offer. Whether it’s mealtime, bath time, or anytime in between, there are always ways to nurture your children's growing minds.

Brain Building Basics


Buffalo Public Schools Strategic Plan updates from Superintendent Dr. Tonja Williams!


Language and developing a love of reading!

Studies show reading aloud to a child significantly increases his chance to succeed in school. So if you are a parent of an infant, toddler or preschooler read out loud to them as often as possible. The basic skills for reading include learning the letters of the alphabet, the sounds of letters and meaning of new words, and the parts of a book.

Below are some links to help you build the skills your child will need:

Tips for Helping Your Child Become a Strong Reader

  • **Talk to your child. Use everyday events like taking a bath, getting dressed or brushing teeth as a chance to expose your child to new words! Ask lots of questions, use short sentences, and lots of words - especially new words.
  • Read with your child every day. Make it fun by reading in different rooms, on the front steps or the backyard.
  • What's that sound? Young children need to understand sounds in order to read words. Pointing out things in the neighborhood can help your child learn about different sounds.
  • Sing songs. Songs can help your child learn and remember new words. Sing lullabies or make up your own songs with your child.
  • Play a rhyming game. If you are in a car or bus, help your child look for objects outside. For example, "I see a tree. What word can you think of that rhymes with tree?" Rhyming helps your child learn sounds and words.
  • Be an Alphabet Detective. Help your child find an "A" on a sign, a "B" on a license plate, and so on. Take your child shopping and find the first letter of his or her name in labels on products you are purchasing.
  • Write a grocery list together. Say the items you plan to buy as you write them down. This shows your child how letters form words.
  • Have your child draw a picture and tell you a story. Drawing is one of the first steps in learning to write. Telling stories helps young children develop language skills.


Learning to Read: Why (Some) Schools Still Get It So Wrong

Writer Emily Oster published a conversation between her and education professor at the University of Virginia, Emily Solari about how kids learn to read, best practices, and reading policy. Click here to read the full conversation!


Great Book Ideas for Families!

Here are some book ideas to get you started, but don't stop there!  Your local library and book store have many book choices for you and your children!  Swap books and book ideas with family and friend so you always have lots of book choices! 

Below are some great choices:

Children born in 2009:

  • Born Yesterday
  • This Monster Cannot Wait
  • One Cool Friend
  • At This Very Moment
  • Tale of Peter Rabbit
  • Betty Bunny Didn't Do It
  • Cinders: Chicken Cinderella
  • Owl Moon
  • Where Butterflies Grow
  • My Teacher
  • Mary and Her Little Lamb
  • If I Built a Car 

Children born in 2010:

  • Legend of the Indian Paintbrush
  • Bringing the Rain to the Kapiti Plain
  • My Baby Blue Jays
  • Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon
  • Luke Goes to Bat
  • The Perfect Present
  • Ladybug Girl and Bumblebee Boy
  •  Ladybug Girl and Bingo
  • Not Your Typical Dragon
  • Night House, Bright House
  • Miss Maple's Seeds
  • Bella's Rules
  • Otis & the Puppy
  • Otis

Children born in 2011: 

  • A House is a House For Me
  • The Story of Ferdinand
  • Truck Stop
  • I Know a Wee Piggy
  • Read to Tiger
  • Llama Llama & the Bully Goat
  • Madeline
  • Old Bear and His Club
  • Little Burro
  • Meet Me at the Moon
  • Llama Llama Time to Share
  • Pretend
  • Snowy Day

Children born in 2012: 

  • My Little Train
  • King Jack & the Dragon
  • Llama Llama Red Pajama
  • Big Sister, Little Sister
  • Big Brother, Little Brother
  • Tea Party Rules
  • One Foot, Two Feet
  • Little Owl's Night
  • My No, No, No Day
  • Mine-O-Saur
  • I am a Rainbow
  • ABCers
  • Tomie DePaola's Mother Goose

Children born in 2013:

  • Spot Goes to the Library
  • Corduroy
  • You Are My I Love You
  • My Farm Friends
  • Red Wagon
  • ABC Look at Me
  • Pouch
  • Good Night Gorilla
  • Little Loon and Papa
  • Your Kind of Mommy
  • All of Baby, Nose to Toes
  • Little Pink Pup

Children born in 2014: 

  • Giggles With Daddy
  • Corduroy Goes to the Doctor
  • Whose Baby Am I?
  • My First Songs
  • Peek A Boo Morning
  • Winnie-the-Pooh's Opposites
  • Look Look!
  • Where's My Nose?
  • Llama Llama Nighty Night
  • Baby Sounds
  • Baby Signs



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