About Utah Kids Ready to Read:


"The mission of Utah Kids Ready to Read! is to provide information, training, technical assistance, and resources on emergent literacy for Utah librarians and their community partners. Our vision is for all parents and caregivers to nurture their children's early literacy skills, and for all children to develop as independent, lifelong readers."

Project Funding:

U.S. Institue of Museum and Library Services

This project is made possible by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas.

Early literacy skills are what a child needs to know before he/she learns to read and write. The goals of early literacy are to increase the frequency and intention with which parents and caregivers:

  • Talk to their children
  • Share books with their children
  • Bring their children to the library

This early literacy program:

  • is research-based and full of proven methods identified by top literacy experts in the nation.
  • is comprised of concepts that most children's librarians are already using.
  • is not about turning storytime into preschool.
  • is not about teaching children to read.
  • is not about teaching children to read early.

Early literacy is important because:

  • 35% of children enter kindergarten without the necessary skills to be successful students (Ready to Learn, a 1991 Carnegie Foundation report).
  • there is a 90% probability that a child who struggles with reading in kindergarten will struggle with reading in fourth grade.
  • the Nation's Report Card (2005) states that 36% of fourth graders and 27% of eighth graders are reading below basic skill level.
    Early literacy and libraries go hand in hand because:
  • no one organization is responsible for teaching these skills to parents of 0 – 5 year olds.
  • there is research-based proof of the value of storytimes and other children's services.
  • it increases the value of libraries and librarians to the community.
  • it ensures creation of future library users.
  • it increases awareness of library materials and library use.

Steering Committee:

  • Lisa Cohne, Utah Education Network
  • Susan Hamada, Salt Lake County Library Services
  • Liesl Johnson, Salt Lake City Public Library
  • Sharon Deeds, Utah State Library
  • Heather Novotny, Salt Lake County Library Services
  • Luene Byers, Cedar City Library
  • Dona Gay, Payson City Library
  • Aurora Howell, Salt Lake Head Start


Utah Kids Ready to Read made possible with the help from the following partners: