Young Readers Day was first created by a collaboration between the Library of Congress and the reading-incentives program with pizza rewards, Book It! We will happily take any excuse to celebrate reading with kids!
Why is reading important?
If you are visiting this blog, you may tend to love books and reading, but there are so many reasons to encourage young readers!
- Reading helps develop emotional intelligence and increases empathy for others, which is important work in the journey to create a more understanding and equitable society.
- Reading is a touchstone for access to knowledge and education. When children become skillful and confident readers, they are prepared to tackle other subject matter presented in text and to learn more broadly. They can also gain those adjacent literacy skills necessary to become strong writers and communicators. When reading skills lag behind, students can find it difficult to keep up across the board. The Free Library and Youth Services are proud partners of the Read by 4th campaign, dedicated to helping students read on or above grade level by the fourth grade.
- Reading can be a vehicle for social and emotional learning. It can provide a form of support and solidarity that helps kids to feel less alone, especially when they see characters whose identity and experiences reflect their own. It can inspire and empower. It can likewise nurture empathy for others across indifference. These are some of the many reasons why representation in reading matters!
- Reading is, most of all, fun! It is a gateway to the imagination, opening up a world of possibilities, with access to new ideas and connections across the globe and beyond.
What should we read?
Anything and everything! Find books, texts, and literacy activities that appeal to your young readers. Keep the learning fun! And talk about it, too. The more subject knowledge young readers have, the easier it is for them to decode vocabulary, even as their reading skills improve. Watch this quick explanation of The Baseball Study to learn more.
How can I encourage my children to read?
- Read aloud and together.
- Visit your neighborhood library to choose books together or attend a storytime.
- Keep books in the house.
- Find a Little Free Library or stop by Treehouse Books to begin building your home library for free!
- Join a book club.
- Start a family reading log and put it on the fridge.
- Join a reading challenge! Classrooms and home-schooling households can still sign up for Book It! to reward young readers with that free personal pan pizza.
- Families and individuals can join any or all of the Free Library’s virtual challenges to create reading goals, keep track of progress, and gain instant access to inspiring and challenging literacy activities for young readers! Log in to Beanstack to sign up for the Fall Reading Challenge.
1000 Books Before Kindergarten
We know you can read that many books before Kindergarten! It doesn't matter if your child is three, or just three months—there's no better time to start than right now. Reading with babies, toddlers, and young children promotes bonding, sparks creativity, and helps kids do well overall in school. This virtual challenge is ongoing so that you and your little one can pace yourselves. We’re here to celebrate your reading milestones along the way. Make reading together a part of your regular routine, and let the magic of stories do the rest! Sign up online. Visit Read, Baby, Read, or check out their blog series for fun and easy ideas to inspire the youngest readers in your life! You can even make your own Reading Promise.
Happy Young Readers Day from the Free Library!