Wisconsin Bookworms™ provides free books, activities and "reading buddies" to thousands of kids who wouldn't otherwise have book of their own. The project is a collaboration of the Wisconsin Association for Home and Community Education, UW-Extension Family Living Programs and Head Start.
Every weekday, Wisconsin Public Television broadcasts "Wisconsin PBS Kids," programs for children that include Sesame Street and Reading Rainbow. These programs motivate children to explore the fun and adventure of reading.
Beginning in 1998, WPT went beyond its commitment to "Wisconsin PBS Kids" with an exciting outreach effort, culminating in a broadcast called Wisconsin Read in: First Book. This project is now known as Wisconsin Bookworms™. Eight times per year, more than 5,000 books, are being distributed free of charge to young children who would not otherwise have a chance to cherish a book of their own.
The Wisconsin Bookworms™ project reaches out to Wisconsin children ages 2–5 in families of financial need and gives them the tools to learn. This year, more than 50,000 books will be distributed.
But WPT doesn't stop there. Through a supportive network of parents, providers and state child care associations, we've developed a reading program whereby readers meet with a child 8 times during the year, bringing new books and additional educational materials each time. The Wisconsin Bookworms™ program is an ambitious attempt to strengthen public television's commitment to preparing children for school.
Wisconsin Bookworms™ is a partnership project with University of Wisconsin Cooperative Extension Family Living Programs and the Wisconsin Association for Home and Community Education. Read a UW-Extension impact report prepared by Family Living Programs (PDF).
Get the 2013-14 Bookworms books here. (Coming soon.)
Get the complete list of past Bookworms titles here. Each title has an accompanying Activity Sheet.
American Library Association features helpful information, including book lists and workshop opportunities.
Reading Is Fundamental offers free literacy kits and great book lists for all ages.
American Literacy Council has tools that encourage literacy as well as other reading tips and practices.
Wisconsin State Reading Associationoffers books and literacy programs open to Wisconsin residents.
The Children's Literature Web Guideincludes discussion boards, award-winning books and commentary on children's books.
The U.S. Department of Education has many tips about reading to children and even provides information on how to make your own book.