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ReadBoston is Mayor Walsh's early literacy program, reaching Boston's children at all points in their day, all year long. We provide schools, after school programs, early childhood centers, summer programs and families with the resources they need to set Boston's children on the path to reading success. For nearly a decade ReadBoston has been driven by our mission to have children in Boston reading on grade level by the time they complete third grade. Founded by Mayor Thomas M. Menino in 1995 to address low literacy levels among Boston's youth, ReadBoston has since grown into a city-wide leader in the field of early literacy.

Our programs reach into every level of a child's life from birth through elementary school. In a child's early years, ReadBoston staff provide child care centers with materials and training to set up home reading programs and work with teachers to improve their literacy teaching skills. At the elementary level ReadBoston helps schools to foster home-school connections, and provides classroom libraries that allow students to take books home to read with their families.

ReadBoston also provides students with three free books each year to create their own libraries at home. Outside of school, ReadBoston focuses effort to integrate literacy into after school programs and provides children with free books and fun storytellings during the summer.
2015 Storymobile Schedule

ReadBoston's Storymobile is rolling into a neighborhood near you! Come and see a professional storyteller with fun, interactive stories. All sites are open to the public and all kids get a new, high-quality book!

Click here for the 2015 Storymobile Schedule.

ReadBoston and Early Literacy

ReadBoston's Early Words program, a partnership with Staples, seeks to increase verbal interaction between parents and caregivers and very young children. Click here for more information The Reading Trail program promotes family involvement in children's literacy development. The Reading Trail establishes home lending libraries in day care centers around Boston. Children are encouraged to read, have a family member read with them, visit the library, and use individual "trail guides" to keep a record of books read. As children reach benchmarks along the Trail, they receive take home books and other reading incentives. Reading Trail sites receive books to establish libraries as well as training on how to integrate family reading activities into their current curriculum

ReadBoston in the Boston Public Schools

ReadBoston also devotes much time and energy to promoting children's literacy in Boston's elementary schools. Our largest in-school program is the Family Literacy Project. The Family Literacy Project encourages family involvement in children's literacy by two central methods. The program sets up home lending libraries in classrooms and promotes twice yearly parent-teacher conferences. The FLP provides books for classroom libraries, as well as teacher training and support to help each school incorporate the program into the existing curriculum.

ReadBoston's After School Reading Initiative

After Schools in Boston are invited to apply for ReadBoston's After School Reading Initiative. Created in 2000, ReadBoston's After School Reading Initiative has worked with over 90 after school programs throughout the city of Boston promoting reading, literature, and literacy. To accomplish this, ReadBoston works closely with after school directors and staff, coaching staff to lead engaging literacy activities. These activities include reading aloud with groups of students, creating independent reading times, and promoting book-related activities. ReadBoston also purchases and develops diverse book collections in after school programs, creating inviting spaces for reading.

Both school-based and community-based programs are invited to apply. Organizations may choose to apply for more than one site, but must submit separate applications for each site.

All questions about the application process should be addressed to Anna Adler, Manager of Literacy Programs, ReadBoston, 617-918-5247, Anna.Adler@boston.gov


For six weeks each summer, the Storymobile program offers a professional storytelling and free new book to children at 82 sites each week. The goal of the program is to incorporate literacy activities into summer programs for Boston's children, providing opportunities for learning when children are away from school classrooms and often experience an academic slide.