The Kenneth Rainin Foundation is leading the funding and implementation of SEEDS of Learning in Oakland. This relationship-based professional development program provides educators, parents and caregivers with strategies to build social, emotional, language and literacy skills in young children, so they are ready to succeed in kindergarten. Less than half of Oakland students enter kindergarten with these skills, so the need for a strong and comprehensive support program is clear.

Investing in the Adults Who Interact with Children Every Day

“As a teacher, SEEDS gave my brain a push to do more.”– Xochilt Robinson, Teacher, Oakland YMCA

Children learn through relationships, which is why we need to invest in the adults who interact with them. In 2014, the Rainin Foundation launched this evidence based program and since then, more than 170 early educators have learned skills to help 1,800 Oakland students achieve dramatic, double-digit gains towards school readiness.

This chart shows the percentage of children in our 2015-16 SEEDS classrooms who progressed to be near, at, or above targets for key skills that are predictive of school readiness.


Percentage of children who progressed to be near, at, or above targets for key skills that are predictive of school readiness.

Supporting Teachers and Accelerating Progress

The Rainin Foundation will not be satisfied until every Oakland child enters kindergarten with the skills and enthusiasm to learn, and is successfully reading by third grade—one of the most important predictors for high school graduation and life success. In the 2016-17 school year, SEEDS of Learning will expand to an additional 150 pre-kindergarten and transitional kindergarten educators.

“Before I started the [SEEDS] program, a lot of my four year olds couldn’t even hold a spoon or a pencil. As I wrap up the program, they’re not only writing their names, they’re writing words and they’re writing friends’ names.”– Mary Wilson, Teacher, 85th Ave Head Start, Oakland

Through SEEDS of Learning:

  • SEEDS coaches support teachers and tutors to provide the highest quality interactions with children, create the environments needed to learn, deliver curricula to early predictive skills, and collect, analyze and act on data.
  • Tutors support teachers with daily classroom routines and give supplemental instruction to children.
  • Parents and caregivers get tips and materials on how to guide their child’s learning in fun and meaningful ways.

Explore SEEDS of Learning

What is SEEDS?

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Who Uses SEEDS?

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Thank You to our Partners

We’ve achieved incredibly promising results for children because of a committed group of partners. These partners are embracing SEEDS of Learning and helping us to unlock potential in Oakland’s youngest learners:

A big thank you to our friends at Tandem and Literacy Lab who make family engagement come to life in each of these classrooms!

The SEEDS of Learning model is based on current research in early childhood education, child development, emergent literacy and effective teaching.  Developed by Kate Horst, this program is at work in seven states with over 11,000 children. Learn more on the SEEDS of Learning website.

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