Reading is deeply important to every child’s development and success as adults. To ensure a love of reading, the Prime Time Family Reading program goes well beyond a typical library story time by inspiring families to read, think, discuss, and learn together.
Held online or at libraries, schools, museums, or other eligible organizations throughout the state, each six-week Prime Time series is a partnership between Humanities Washington, a local library, and a local elementary school. Prime Time models reading and discussion techniques that families can easily replicate, transforming homes into learning environments and giving children strong foundations for becoming lifelong learners.
Since the program launched in Washington State in 2014, over 1,500 families have participated statewide in over 80 Washington communities.
In response to pandemic learning loss, Prime Time Family Reading is expanding throughout the state for fall 2022 and spring 2023 programming. For libraries and other eligible organizations, this means financial support and resources to hold Prime Time series in your community. Learn more and apply for financial support.
Prime Time Family Reading is proven to positively impact families and children. Of the families who have participated in Prime Time since 2018:
95% have increased the amount of time they read together
93% have experienced a positive change in their attitudes toward reading
98% are demonstrating improved critical thinking skills
98% now visit their local libraries more frequently
97% are now more likely to use library services
Prime Time Family Reading was developed by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities. Read the organization’s 10-year impact study on how Prime Time supports students’ long-term academic achievement.
Prime Time Family Reading has also been the recipient of multiple awards, including an Advancement of Literacy award from the Public Library Association, and the Coming Up Taller Award, which is given by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities. The program is also a Library of Congress Best Practices in Literacy Promotion Honoree.
Listen to a radio story that features a local Prime Time series.
“The Prime Time program has been one of the most meaningful and rewarding opportunities I have experienced in the 10 years I have been a children’s librarian. One mom said that her son decided that they need to continue visiting the library every week. She requested a consistent day off from work, and now they plan on visiting the library every Monday!”
– Washington State Librarian and Prime Time Team Member
“Honestly reading was a chore before. It was something I dreaded because it was one more thing after a long day. After this program though I’ve learned how little it takes to get her engaged and it’s becoming a really enjoyable time.”
– Port Hadlock adult Prime Time participant
For more information about Prime Time, please contact our Prime Time Team, at [email protected] or 206-682-1770 ext. 104.
Prime Time Family Reading Time was developed by the Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities. Prime Time is made possible with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities, State of Washington via the Office of the Secretary of State, Washington State Library, Washington State Legislature, Washington Library Association, Washington State Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction, Discuren Charitable Foundation, Fordham Street Foundation, Bamford Foundation, BNSF Railway Foundation, Norman Raab Foundation, D.V. and Ida McEachern Charitable Trust, Stocker Foundation, Helen Martha Schiff Foundation, Allison Foundation, and other businesses, foundations, and individuals.
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