COLLTS | Dual Language Early Childhood Program Partnership with Bebop Books

Image of preschoolers reading on the floor at school

Cultivating Oral Language Literacy Talent in Students (COLLTS) is a research-based, early childhood language and literacy program developed by staff at the Center for English Learners at AIR. The program includes high-quality materials and professional development.

Exclusive to Bebop Books, the COLLTS materials use interactive reading with outstanding children’s literature to promote the development of:

  • foundational and pre-reading skills;
  • oral language proficiency; and
  • background and conceptual knowledge.

The AIR and Bebop Books teams work closely with districts and schools to provide customized support that prepares instructional staff to meet the demands of high academic standards for English learners.

Read a personal essay by Patricia Garcia-Arena about her memories of being an English learner and how early literacy experiences can be better for ELs today.
  • Partnership: We take time to learn about a client’s needs and develop a customized support plan.
  • Implementation: We provide support to enhance curriculum and instruction and track progress.
  • Sustainability: We work with districts to develop plans for sustaining the work.



The COLLTS Bebop Program: Materials

The COLLTS materials consist of read-aloud units, each of which has five lessons. The lessons are systematically organized into pre-reading, interactive reading, and post-reading activities, which makes it easy for teachers to develop practices and routines for interactive reading and center time.Image of Lee & Low logo

Sole Source: Our COLLTS Bebop Kits are offered exclusively by Bebop Books, an imprint of Lee & Low Books.

Targeting the critical early childhood ages, the COLLTS Bebop program consists of:

  • Six units in English and six units in Spanish;
  • Five lessons for each unit, centered around a children’s book;
  • Teaching guides;
  • Writing activities;
  • Picture cards with target vocabulary;
  • Observational protocol for coaches; and
  • Bilingual family literacy take-home handouts.


Image of COLLTS materialsCOLLTS lessons can easily fit into an ongoing early childhood program. Each teacher-directed component of a COLLTS lesson is 15 minutes long. Ten-minute center activities complement and extend the teacher-directed lessons. Books are purposefully selected for their literary and informational quality, text type, appeal to young children, and the extent to which their content aligns with the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework.

Professional Development: Bringing the COLLTS Bebop Program to You

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For full price and ordering information, or to receive a sample, or to speak with the authors of the program or schedule professional development for your district and school, please contact Shannon Keuter.

To order the COLLTS curriculum kits and books, please contact

The COLLTS professional development takes a job-embedded approach. We provide the COLLTS professional development to teachers and caregivers to familiarize them with the COLLTS methods and materials. Once they have had initial training and experience implementing the units, they are eligible for training that teaches them to create their own shared interactive reading units that use COLLTS methods.

We offer training for coaches or administrators in the COLLTS methods and materials and ways they can support teachers in implementing COLLTS lessons. Coaches in turn can then provide support to teachers in using the program. We are also available organize and moderate planning and discussion about COLLTS as part of a site or school’s professional learning community (PLC).

Professional developers from the AIR Center for English Learners are available to come to your district or school to prepare your early childhood education teachers and/or coaches to implement the COLLTS program. AIR offers one- or two-day training sessions to prepare teachers, coaches, and other staff to implement the COLLTS program. Follow-up coaching is also available.

Suggested Training Scenarios

Image of COLLTS logoHalf day foundational training: This 3-hour, half-day foundational training introduces teachers to all the components of the COLLTS program, and gives teachers practice with using the program.

Full day foundational training: This 6-hour, full day training builds upon foundational training by providing additional support on how to integrate COLLTS into existing curricula and routines and the possibility for support in development of lessons using the COLLTS method.

Additional observation and coaching support can be added to any training package to support implementation.

About AIR

Established in 1946, the American Institutes for Research (AIR) is a nonpartisan, not-for-profit organization that conducts behavioral and social science research and delivers technical assistance both domestically and internationally in the areas of education, health and the workforce. AIR’s work is driven by its mission to generate and use rigorous evidence that contributes to a better, more equitable world. With headquarters in Arlington, Virginia, AIR has offices across the U.S. and abroad. For more information, visit

About the Center for English Learners at AIR

The Center for English Learners at AIR is committed to reducing the achievement gap and improving outcomes for English learners by connecting rigorous research to policy and practice. In addition to professional development related to COLLTS, Center staff conduct research related to teaching and learning; perform policy studies; provide technical assistance to states and districts to enhance English language learning; and support schools in implementing Attaining Core Content for English Language Learners (ACCELL), the AIR research-based approach for supporting teachers with English learners in their classrooms.

About Bebop Books

Image of Bebop Books logoBebop Books offers leveled books that support literacy learning in guided reading and intervention settings—all with a strong commitment to diversity and cultural authenticity. Bebop Books provides the content and literacy opportunities you need to engage all children with authentic, effective learning experiences! Bebop Books is an imprint of Lee & Low Books, which is a certified 100% Minority Owned Business Enterprise (MBE).

Shannon Keuter headshot
Senior Researcher

Related Blog Posts

From Lee & Low Books' Open Book Blog:

How to support dual language learners in the classroom

Evidence-based ways to enhance and reinforce language foundational reading and emergent writing with young learners: Examples from COLLTS

Lee & Low responds to FAQs about the COLLTS curriculum

Related Events

Patricia Garcia-Arena and Rebecca Bergey presented COLLTS: Instructional Strategies for Dual Language Learners on March 30 at the CABE 2022 Conference.

Staff at the Center for English Learners presented on COLLTS and writing for young learners. View the presentation.

Lauren Artzi and Rebecca Bergey presented on developing oral language and literacy for young emergent bilinguals at the IES Reading Summit. View the videos from this event.

Patricia Garcia-Arena and Rebecca Bergey shared study findings and introduced the COLLTS curriculum in a Center for ELs webinar, Best Practices for English Learners in PreK: The COLLTS Program. View the recording.


Diane August
Former Managing Researcher and product author

Ashley Simpson Baird
Former Senior Researcher and product author

Rebecca Bergey
Senior Researcher

Shannon Keuter
Senior Researcher