A young boy and his mother read a book together. Both are smiling.

Fun reading resources for your family.

Being read to as a child and having books at home are the two most important indicators of future academic success. From visits to the library, picking up books from a resale shop and a number of free eBook sites you’ll be sure to have plenty of ways to support reading to your child. Visit the LaneKids Activity Calendar to see story times and other family friendly events.

Quick Tips to Encourage Reading in Your Family

Every day, anywhere, you and your child can practice reading! Here are tips to help your child become a stronger reader.

  • Create a reading area. Give your child a special place to read using a few basic things. With their help find a cozy location, grab some pillows or blankets, make sure there is enough light (either from a window, a bedside light or overhead light) and find a small box to put some books in. Sit back and enjoy your reading nook!
  • Read at home and everywhere in between. You can read more than just books. Practice reading menus, road signs, cereal boxes and more.
  • Take books with you. Pack books in your backpack and bring some on car and bus rides. You can enjoy books anywhere you go!
  • Spend 20 minutes every day reading. You could read in the morning, afternoon or before bed. To form the habit of reading daily try to read at the same time every day.
  • Read out aloud. Practice reading out loud. You can encourage your child to read to a family member, your pets, or even their stuffed animals!
  • Read while you wait. We often have free time when we wait. When you are in a doctor’s office or at a stop light, look around to see what you and your child can read!
  • Spend less time on a phone or playing video games. The less time you spend watching television or playing video games, the more time you will have for reading.
  • Read with your child and ask them questions: Read with your child and ask them questions like, “Why do you think they did that?” or “How do you think they feel?” or “What do you think will happen next?”
  • Keep track of how much time you spend reading. If you’re having trouble motivating your child to read have them track their reading in a “reading log” and turn it in for rewards. Have them write down how much time they spend reading each day in their reading log. Once they have read a certain number of minutes allow them to earn screen time, a low-cost fun activity, a prize, or something else you know will motivate them to read!

Low Cost and Free Books

  • Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a book gifting program that mails free, high-quality books to children from birth until their 5th birthday. Check here to find if the program is available in your community. (Disponible en español)
  • St. Vincent De Paul has a large range of low cost, gently used children’s books. See a list of their stores here.
  • Find a Little Free Library near you! While there is a limited selection, they typically change often, and it can be a little adventure every time you visit.
  • Look for books at garage sales, the discount section of a bookstore and other businesses that sell books (like grocery stores), or trade books with families that have kids around your child’s age.

Online Reading Resources

  • Tumble Books – animated, talking picture books which teach kids the joy of reading in a format they’ll love. Requires library card or access through school website. (books available in Spanish and French)
  • Reading Blog – expert tips from the Kids in Transition to School (KITS) Program for parents and caregivers on how to support their young readers. (Disponible en español)
  • SMART Reading – resources and tips for parents from the SMART Reading program. (Disponible en español)
  • Wilbooks – free online books for kids Pre-K to Third grade. (Disponible en español)
  • Wonderopolis – a place where natural curiosity and imagination lead to exploration and discovery in learners of all ages. Each day, they pose an intriguing question and explore it in a variety of ways.
  • KidZone Free books to read and listen to, as well as games to play.
  • Reading Partners – resources for parents to stay educated and informed about early literacy.
  • Reading Rockets – offers research-based reading strategies, lessons, and activities designed to help young children learn how to read and read better. Reading resources assist parents, teachers, and other educators in helping struggling readers build ­fluency, vocabulary, and comprehension skills.
  • Storylineonline.net streams actors reading children’s books alongside creative illustrations.