TJC’s Family Learning Center of Tyler joins statewide Books Beginning at Birth literacy program | TJC

TJC’s Family Learning Center of Tyler joins statewide Books Beginning at Birth literacy program

Research has repeatedly shown that the sooner young children are exposed to reading, the better their language skills and capacity for learning will be during their school years and beyond.

Tyler Junior College’s Family Learning Center of Tyler (FLCOT) recently joined Books Beginning at Birth, a statewide program that provides children from birth to age 4 and their families with free books and resources that support the development of early literacy skills and foster a love of reading.
This week, the center held its first of three book distributions that will occur during the school year. The remaining shipments will arrive around late-January and in the spring.
“Each child can choose two books at a time,” said Amber Welguisz, FLCOT director and TJC Child Development/Early Childhood professor. “We have a variety of books in English- and Spanish-only as well as dual language. We have a variety of titles of different age levels, and we will also have literacy-based classroom activities that go with their books.”

Family Learning Center

Cashton Whitaker, age 2, shows off his new book at the Family Learning Center of Tyler.

As an extension of the classroom curriculum and language-development activities, the program also offers an online portal and digital library that parents can access at home with their children.
“This is a great way to get the entire family involved in reading and literacy,” Welguisz said. “Every person who works in this building loves literacy and knows how important language development is.”
She added, “And with over half of the population that we serve being dual language, we know how highly important it is that we promote language development for children from birth and through age 4. That is the prime time for building those brain connections that will give them a head start on language development for when they go into public school.”
About the center
The Family Learning Center of Tyler — established in 2007 as a collaborative project of the Literacy Council of Tyler, Tyler ISD and TJC — is the only nationally accredited childcare center in Smith County.
It also serves as the TJC Child Development/Early Childhood Education Laboratory School for college students preparing for careers in early childhood professions. For more information, go to
The center currently has limited openings for children in its 4-year-old classroom. For more information, go to or call 903-593-2295.


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