The research behind Abound

The Abound app is based on the latest science of literacy, made accessible for parents.

Literacy is central to your child’s success

We have a national problem that is personal to every family:
Fewer than 1 in 10 children achieve the advanced reading skills needed for the 21st-century economy.

Many stakeholders in a child’s education are taken seriously and given support, except the one contributor who matters most.

Parents aren’t provided with the guidance necessary to help their children succeed.

Your child’s greatest hope is you

Reading is more than 26 letters and 44 sounds.

We know that back and forth conversations lead to better reading, better learning, and better growth. We also know that learning to read takes an accumulation of skills developed over time.

The good news is, a few minutes per day can make a big difference. Adding conversational prompts into your everyday interactions will help you understand where your child shines. If extra help is needed, you’ll notice before your child has fallen way behind.

What the Research Says

The science is clear. To read well, children need a combination of literacy skills and social-emotional skills.

Literacy Skills, 0-3 YEARS

Building language

During the early years, a child needs to develop the ability to understand and then say many words. Parents and other caregivers are instrumental.

Literacy Skills, 0-3 YEARS

Book experiences

Book Experiences—when parents and caregivers regularly read to and talk about print with babies, toddlers, and preschoolers—prepare children to eventually read on their own.

Social & Emotional Skills, ALL AGES

Awareness & regulation

These are the social and emotional skills critical to reading and academic success—at all ages. They include a child’s ability to be aware of himself and others, understand empathy, and stay engaged in learning moments.


Letters & sounds

These are mechanical skills: reading individual words based on a knowledge of letters and sounds and how to blend individual letter/sound units into words, automatically and fluently.

Literacy Skills, 3+ YEARS

Vocabulary & knowledge

These skills are important for understanding books and other texts. Even when children can read words (i.e., they have Letters & Sounds skills), they still need to make sense of what the words really mean. The words in books get much harder for children as they age because they’re different from the words parents and kids use in conversation.