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Monday, August 22, 2011

Ramping Up Reading Excitement

Two libraries of very different sizes and approaches have developed fun projects to help preschoolers and their families get excited about reading together--not just during the summer!

In our very own Colfax, Jenny is encouraging families with preschoolers to be Smart Cookies and read together. They are keeping track of books read together, and are aiming for 100 books--not for each family, but for the group. Each child takes home a sheet (decorated with cookies) to write down titles read to them. When they return the sheets, Jenny adds the titles and the names of the children to a giant cookie jar on the wall of the kid's area. When they reach 100 books they have a party! Other reading promotions have included I Scream for Books(with a trip to the local ice cream parlour after the collective goal was reached), Pop Open a Good Book (with a popcorn party at the end).

In LaCrosse, the inimitable Marge Loch Wouters and her fabulous crew are working on a project to encourage families to read 1,000 books to each child before kindergarten! Every 100 books read, they come to the library to receive incentives, including adding stickers to a mural. Six months into the program, 400 families are participating so far, and circulation statistics for picture books have gone through the roof--20% increase!

Different communities, different scales. What are you doing to encourage reading at home?


  1. OOOOh, now I want to do smart cookies! What a great idea for a winter reading program for kids! Thanks Jenny!

  2. Thanks for posting about our Smart Cookie promotion. I think the kids will have a great time with that!