Community Learning

Community Learning Event and Information

Mankato Area Public School Early Literacy

Our early learning department has offered and continues to offer family classes such as Books and Beyond and community outreach through Storyteller with the goal of building literacy skills in our youngest learners. This past year, Mankato Area Public Schools was eligible to receive Achievement and Integration funds to pursue racial and economic integration, increase student achievement, create equitable educational opportunities and reduce academic disparities. As part of this work, the early learning department was able to add a Reading Teacher to increase enrollment of students from racial and economically diverse backgrounds in Pre-K programs and to provide early literacy coaching to enhance reading strategies using culturally-relevant best practices in the birth to age 5 population.

Jen Gates started this new position of Reading Teacher with the Early Learning Department in the fall of 2019. Jen has been with Mankato Area Public Schools for the past 8 years as an early childhood special education teacher and a Kindergarten teacher. In continuing to prepare our students and increase the percent of all students that meet or exceed on the 3rd-grade Reading MCA (MN Comprehensive Assessment), Jen will work closely with the early childhood teachers to monitor and support progress towards our literacy initiatives. Some of this work will include visiting classrooms to provide feedback through coaching, hosting professional development sessions, conversations with parent groups, and reviewing data with staff and administrators. As we move forward, this model will continue to build as we expand this early literacy support to our community preschool partners.

TED Talk - Why we should all be reading aloud to children

Want to learn more? 

Links to check out

Books to check out

  • From Babbles to Books Supporting Language and Literacy Development in Early Childhood - Brookes Publishing
  • Play to Talk by J. MacDonald and P. Stoika (Connect with MAPS Early Learning if you would like to check out this resource.)
  • Reading Right From the Start - Teaching Strategies Parent Guide by T. Bickart and D.T. Dodge

Contact us at: 

Address: 820 Hubbell Ave, Mankato, MN 56001
Phone: 507-625-4620