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LENA in Virginia

Making every interaction count and transforming children's futures

LENA (Language ENvironment Analysis) is a national nonprofit on a mission to transform children's futures through early talk technology and data-driven programs. LENA works with a wide range of partner organizations to boost early brain development and improve school readiness for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers.

Since 2017, LENA has served 1,900 children and 370 early childhood educators in Virginia, and LENA technology has recorded over 3.2 million conversational turns. Put your community on the map!



3.2 million

LENA Grow offers evidence-based professional development for infant, toddler, and preschool teachers.
LENA Start builds school readiness and strengthens families with parent-group classes.
LENA SP offers reliable, detailed language environment data in research and clinical applications.

LENA Grow counts toward the required annual professional development hours for Virginia child care licensing.
LENA also has crosswalks with Head Start, CLASS, The Pyramid Model, ZERO TO THREE, and more!

 Staff Member
“Investing in our youngest citizens at birth and continuing to do so throughout their school years makes smart economic sense. It is an investment in our future workforce, and the early childhood years form a critical foundation for a child’s future learning and life success.”
Barb Lito
Virginia Beach GrowSmart Coodinator

Interested in bringing LENA to your community?

Whether you're with a library, school district, CCR&R, state agency, university-community partnership, public health initiative, or any other organization dedicated to improving early childhood outcomes, we invite you to learn more about bringing LENA to your community.

 Staff Member

Connect with Amy Marciniak,
Senior Regional Partnerships Director, Virginia

Blog Posts

Read these and other stories about partner success stories and research findings in Virginia and beyond.


LENA’s role in “The Right to Read” documentary: A focus on preliteracy skills

A documentary film from director Jenny Mackenzie and executive producer LeVar Burton features two LENA Start coordinators and their families.

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Five cities will replicate Providence Talks, offering LENA programs for parents and teachers citywide

Five cities have been selected to replicate Providence Talks, one of the first early language initiatives implemented at the municipal level, with support from Bloomberg Philanthropies.

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Learning to read (and write) starts earlier than you think!

Dr. Lucy Hart Paulson, co-author of LETRS for Early Childhood Educators, on how learning to talk and learning to read and write happen in parallel. Learning to read starts earlier than you think, and conversational turns are an important piece of the puzzle!

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On-Demand Webinars


What role may a child’s earliest interactions play in laying the foundation for learning to read? In this webinar, we take an expert deep dive into how conversational turns from ages birth to five fit into the ongoing discussions around the “science of reading.”

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Providence Talks Replication: Celebrating and Looking Ahead

In 2019, five U.S. cities were selected to receive a three-year grant to replicate the widely celebrated Providence Talks early literacy program. As the grant period draws to a close, we’re sharing their stories of what worked. 

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Setbacks and Solutions: Helping early educators navigate language and social-emotional delays 

It’s more important than ever to equip early childhood educators to address children’s unique needs and help get their language and social-emotional development on track. There’s strong new evidence to suggest that LENA Grow, a language-focused professional development program for early educators, is effective at doing just that.

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