Mother Goose Asks “Why?” A Literature and Science Activity Program for Young Parents Through Libraries in 14 States

June 1st, 1998 - November 30th, 2001 | PROJECT

The Vermont Center for the Book currently reaches over 1,000 parents in Vermont through the informal science education program, Mother Goose Asks "Why?." Through the program, exemplary children's literature and related science activities are brought to parents of preschool children in a series of four reading/discussion/activity sessions. Participants explore such questions as "What Is It?", "How Many", "How Do You Do It?", and "How Does It Grow?" and gain the expertise and confidence to introduce science to their 3-7 year old children. Many of the parents involved are reached through programs such as Head Start, Adult Basic Education, and Parent Centers. In this current project, the Vermont Center for the Book with make the program available to parents in 12 other states, the District of Columbia, and the Virgin Islands by equipping their state libraries and state centers for the book to conduct the program in local libraries and library service outreach sites in housing projects, on Native American reservations and in prisons. The Vermont Center will train library professionals in the content and process of the program and provide technical support as the new sites begin implementation of the program. At the same time, the Vermont Center will create another program, "You Can Count on Mother Goose," that will be based in books and activities through which parents can introduce their preschool children to basic mathematics ideas. Once created and field-tested, this new program will be disseminated to all of the participating sites.

Project Website(s)

(no project website provided)

Team Members

Sally Anderson, Principal Investigator, Vermont Center for the Book
Joan Nagy, Co-Principal Investigator, Vermont Center for the Book
Gregory DeFrancis, Co-Principal Investigator, Vermont Center for the Book


Funding Source: NSF
Funding Program: ISE/AISL
Award Number: 9801774
Funding Amount: 1687615


Audience: Elementary School Children (6-10) | Museum | ISE Professionals | Parents | Caregivers | Pre-K Children (0-5)
Discipline: General STEM | Literacy
Resource Type: Project Descriptions
Environment Type: Library Programs | Public Programs