Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Leí Leí {an app}

Hey guys, I know I don't normally do this on the good ol' blog but I really wanted to share a new and exciting thing geared just for kids that's a bit "techie."
If you didn't know, my Mexican heritage means a lot to me. Born and raised in Mexico, I know firsthand how hard it was for me to learn English when we moved to the United States. When Jazmin from ¡Leí Leí!  asked me if i could review an app they were developing specifically for Hispanic children and their parents, I was totally like, for sure!
¡Leí Leí! (translates to "I Can Read I Can Read!) is an educational tool that helps Mexican-American children gain bilingual literacy skills and supports their cultural identity through their cute little characters that both speak and look like them.
They have a Kickstarter campaign going on right now to fund their first appisode and it's ending pretty soon, so I encourage you to spend a few minutes learning what it's about:
This is taken from their Kickstarter page:
As a whole, the Hispanic population is an under-served minority group that is growing very rapidly. ¡Leí Leí! connects with first-generation Mexican American children, ages 3–5, before they enter school, to give them a curriculum that reinforces their early Spanish literacy while introducing English. It is important that these children gain proficiency in their native language, as these skills facilitate their English comprehension and literacy.
My home is mainly an English speaking household. But, my children know several words in Spanish because I speak it for their benefit. For one, I was very fortunate to grow up with a bilingual mother who knew the importance of knowing, speaking, and writing both languages.
But not everyone has that advantage.
Living in Houston, the third largest Mexican populated city in the United States*, I know that ¡Leí Leí! would be very beneficial to every Mexican kid before they enter pre-K or Kindergarten as most of them grow up with only Spanish-speaking parents.
But it's not just geared for the children. It's not just a mindless game they play when you hand them that tablet or phone.
It's also a tool that can be used for parents to help them learn right along with their children.
By providing kids access to ¡Leí Leí!, parents are empowered first by being aware of this educational gap for their children. And after each appisode, parents are connected to additional resources. They want parents to encourage their children, be involved, help them succeed. That to me, is the most important thing. Parents have to be involved if you want a child to succeed.
To give you an idea of what ¡Leí Leí! is, they've helped by simulating it on a smart phone:
I absolutely love the look of it! I hope you join us in this mission to make the most of our children's educational journey. You can do so by sharing the word through social media like Twitter and Facebook and Instagram (tons of behind the scenes--you know i love it!) and by donating to their Kickstarter page to keep this going forward.
Also, if you have any questions about the app, feel free to email me at sanlynet at gmail dot com.
Have a great week guys!
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*Taken from HoustonTx.gov page