From the moment a child is born, they begin developing literacy skills to interpret the world around them. We Read Together is the Los Angeles Public Library’s early-learning initiative that gives all families direct access to resources and programming to help children become school-ready and develop a lifelong love of reading and learning. The initiative takes place at Central Library and 72 neighborhood libraries across the city.

We Read Together’s core function is helping children (0-5 years) and their parents and caregivers get ready for kindergarten. School-readiness programming includes virtual and in-person workshops, storytimes, and play activities. These programs demonstrate how to support children’s essential pre-literacy (e.g., print and letter awareness, narrative skills) and executive function skills (e.g., problem-solving, self-regulation, motor skills) while providing fun and exciting experiences for babies and young children through stories and play.

We Read Together offers the following component programs:

  • Read Baby Read promotes the importance of pre-literacy skills in infancy to new and expectant parents through collaborations with community medical facilities, daycares, and early learning centers. Parents receive Read Baby Read kits that promote the Library’s early-learning resources and blankets, books, and a Baby Library Card.
  • Storytelling and Reading (STAR) cultivates a lifelong love of reading in children through fun and engaging read-aloud sessions with trained volunteers stationed in neighborhood libraries citywide. Children earn a free book for their home library by attending three reading sessions
  • L.A. Plays! provides circulating early-literacy kits with a book, related toy, and suggested activities for parents to do at home with their children. Kits help parents use storytime to encourage imaginative play and verbal interactions. This program is currently available at eight city libraries.

Free early literacy programming is offered every day! Check out upcoming programs here.

We Read Together and Story Telling and Reading at the Los Angeles Public Library are supported by the generosity of:

  • Jean Perkins Foundation
  • The Kenneth T. and Eileen L. Norris Foundation
  • The Thomas and Dorothy Leavey Foundation
  • Dan Murphy Foundation
  • Berger Family Foundation
  • The Boudjakdji Foundation
  • William H. Hannon Foundation
  • Paramount Pictures
  • Lon V. Smith Foundation

To learn more about funding opportunities for We Read Together and Story Telling and Reading, please contact Imani Harris, Senior Director of Foundation and Corporate Relations, at 213.292.6243 or [email protected].

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