STAY UP TO DATE. Join our email list »

First Things First First Things First Menu Close


Learn about Quality First


Serve your AZ community


See current RFGAs

First Things First partners with families and communities to support the healthy development and learning of Arizona’s young children.

Why Early Childhood Matters

90% of a child’s brain develops before they start kindergarten. And research shows that the quality of a child’s experiences in their first five years helps shape how their brain develops.

Kids with positive, stable relationships with parents and caregivers, as well as quality child care and preschool experiences, go on to do better in school and in life. They’re more likely to read at grade level and graduate from high school. They are more prepared for college and career. They also tend to be healthier and demand less from the public welfare system. These are better outcomes for kids that also save taxpayers money.

First Things More First Things

mom reads picture book to daughter

When reading to toddlers, books with pictures are ‘just right’

New research shows that reading a story book with pictures sparks more brain activity in young children than watching a cartoon or reading a book without pictures.

The Parent Kit is here to help you meet the challenges of being a parent.

boy and girl reading highlights the importance of reading for kindergarten readiness

Podcast: Kindergarten Readiness is Life Readiness

Being ready for school is about having the foundations for language, social skills, persistence, curiosity and more. So what can you be doing to help your…

Mom and sister read book with young girl

Early focus on social-emotional skills helps in many ways

New research from Harvard highlights that early childhood brain development is interconnected. Social-emotional skills, language and physical skills all…

Playbook highlights of playing with baby

Parents Playbook: Dad, mom in top plays with speedy freshman

Check out the video highlights! Play is one of the best things you can do to support your child’s development and learning.

Mother walking daughter to school

A parent’s guide to planning for kindergarten

From the parent of an almost-first grader, here are some things to check out ahead of time, before your child’s big day.


Use summer to prepare for kindergarten success

The first day of kindergarten is a big step for young kids. Families can use the summer to help make the transition to kindergarten easier.

Mom and daughter on slide

Quality time doesn’t have to cost a thing

Read the story of how an unexpected car repair bill led a single mom to realize that the best we can give our children starts with ourselves.

Latest News More Latest News

FTF/Partner Sites

  • ftf_partner_logos_quality first
  • ftf_partner_logos_prodev network
  • ftf_partner_logos_summit
  • ftf_partner_logos_data center
  • ftf_partner_logos_resource
  • ftf_partner_logos_read on az

Family Stories More Stories

Four Peach Springs mothers, all sisters, find support for their young children through home visitation program

Rochelle Kennedy enrolled in the Maternal Child Health program two years ago when she was pregnant with her daughter, Mia. Kennedy learned so much from her…

Kindergarten Boot Camp encourages excitement for learning in Phoenix boy

When Erica Sarmiento learned about Kindergarten Bootcamp, a Phoenix Public Library program funded by First Things First, she put it on the top of her…

Mother with son

New Phoenix mom finds support to prepare her children to succeed in school

​When Elizabeth Goings first moved to Phoenix with her husband, she did not have a lot of options for her young son, Joshua. With limited ability to speak…

Stay Up To Date.

Join our email list to keep up with the latest news and information from FTF

Send me:

© First Things First. All Rights Reserved. • Privacy PolicyWebsite FeedbackOmbudsman-Citizens Aide