Our Literacy Programs
Our libraries are only the first step in helping the children we serve gain the curiosity and skills they need to be prepared for school and beyond. Through our libraries, we surround children with books in a print-rich environment, but the real magic happens when our Library Specialists bring the stories to life. Books for Kids implements evidence-based, developmentally appropriate programs in our libraries to envelop the children – and the adults in their lives – in literature and reading. Through these programs, we support, and even create, a strong culture of reading and a lifelong love of books.
Story Time Program
Books for Kids programming is centered around dialogical, thematic Story Times for children during the time in their lives when they learn the most, birth through 5 years old. Our Library Specialists, who are all early childhood literacy experts, work directly with the children, teachers, and families in our libraries and classrooms to deepen their earliest literacy experiences.
Our Story Time is much more than simply reading a book out loud. Through engaging lesson plans that incorporate conversations, questions, songs, rhymes, body movements, art, props, and costumes, our stories jump off the pages and come alive.
The academic impact of Story Time is lasting and profound. Besides creating a reading culture, Story Time increases foundational language and critical thinking skills, builds vocabulary and phonemic awareness, and strengthens social and emotional learning during the most crucial years of a child’s development. And perhaps most importantly, it’s so much fun for the children.
Weekly Lending Library Program
Our Lending Library Program encourages and assists children in borrowing, reading, and returning library books from the Books for Kids library in their building. Books for Kids motivates children to explore, to develop their individual tastes, and to make choices for themselves regarding the types of stories they want to read.
Our Lending Library program is indispensable and convenient for our teachers and families as our libraries are comprised of vast collections of culturally relevant books that align and compliment curricula, units of study, and recommended reading lists. Additionally, each of our collections is expertly curated to reflect the diversity, cultures, and communities of the children we serve, as well as to introduce new and exciting worlds and concepts to them.
Children receive a special Books For Kids book bag for toting books from the library to and from their home and collections are replenished regularly so our bookshelves are always well stocked with developmentally appropriate, recently released, high-interest, and award-winning children’s books.
Build a Home Library Program
The Books for Kids Build a Home Library Program ensures that children have a bounty of books in their other natural learning environment: their homes. We give children at least six brand new books a year, which are theirs to read over and over and cherish forever. These books are carefully and thoughtfully selected for their popularity and mass appeal, as well as their academic and social and emotional value.
Current research in early literacy has shown that time spent reading with a trusted adult has an enormous impact on a child’s growth and the development of their own love of learning and reading. We have seen that family reading time is significantly increased by children’s participation in our weekly lending and Build A Home Library programs, and this is supported by the feedback we have received through surveys we regularly collect from participating families and teachers in our programs. Books for Kids also hosts fun and informative events and offers reading logs, as well as reflection, activity, and tip sheets to further support and increase the time families spend reading together.