The Library holds programs throughout the year to help create young readers.
An on-going reading challenge for parents and caregivers of children 6 and under who haven't started kindergarten yet. Because it's never too early to start reading to your child, this reading challenge encouraging a habit of regular reading by tracking every time a book is read, with fun prizes for the little learners along the way! Start your child on this fun challenge by downloading your tracking sheet now at
The Library partners with early childhood programs across Wichita to challenge our City's youngest artists, ages 0-6, to create artwork based on books. The art is displayed to the public during the month of April at several Wichita Public Library locations. It occurs surrounding the Week of the Young Child, a national celebration of early learning, young children, their teachers and families.
Since at least 1926, the Library has offered
summer reading programs to the children of Wichita. These programs aim to fight the "summer brain drain" that causes children to suffer a measurable reading loss over the summer break from school.
Baby Bookworms, designed for children ages 2 and under, focuses on early learning activities for parents to practice like talking, singing, reading, and playing. These activities emphasize skills you can help your child develop before he or she learns to read.
Kids Read, open to children ages 3 through 5th grade, emphasizes reading 20 minutes or more daily.
Every fall, the Wichita area is encouraged to join in on reading and enjoying community activities surrounding one book. While the selected book is for adults, the Wichita Public Library and its various partners provide companion books as well as many programs designed for children, teens and families. The 2022 NEA: Big Read Wichita selection was The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros. The next Big Read Wichita will launch in March 2023, featuring Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant? by Roz Chast. More information can be found at
Each November, libraries across the state observe Kansas Reads to Preschoolers Month, an event that promotes reading to children from birth through age 5. Parents, librarians, early childhood professionals, and caregivers are encouraged to read a chosen book. During this month, the Library serves thousands of preschoolers in Wichita through visits to schools and early childhood facilities. The selection for 2022 was Not a Box by Antoinette Portis.
The Library has partnered with GraceMed and University of Kansas Pediatric Clinics to offer a free book at well-child exams. At each exam, parents are given a coupon that can be redeemed at the Library for one free children's book.