Fathers Reading Every Day (FRED) is an award-winning family literacy program developed over a decade ago to encourage greater parental involvement in children’s early literacy development, with a specific focus on fathers. During the program, fathers and father-figures of children enrolled in early childhood programs and elementary schools are presented with research-based, best-practice strategies for helping them initiate daily reading activities with their children.
Since 2002, over 20,000 fathers and children have participated nationally and internationally. FRED is currently being pilot-tested in over 40 schools by the Fatherhood Institute in London, England.
Results from a recent evaluation study involving more than 700 FRED participants show:
- Fathers averaged more than 9 hours of reading time with their children and read over 41 books together.
- Statistically significant differences from pre to post were noted in a number of areas, including the amount of time fathers spent reading to their children, number of books read during a typical week, level of involvement in their children’s education, quality of time spent with their children, and level of satisfaction with the father-child relationship.
- The percentage of fathers reading to their children three or more times per week increased from 52% (pre-test) to 79% (post-test).
- Additionally, 57% of participating fathers reported an increase in the quality of time spent with their children; 59% reported an increase in their involvement in their children’s education; and 56% reported an improved father-child relationship.