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Family Literacy Services
Stacey Zwald Costello, Library Director

Alissa Morrow, Literacy Coordinator

The Colusa County Free Library Literacy Program gives away free books for children ages birth-17 a minimum of six times per year.  This is done not only to encourage a love of reading in the youth of the county, but also to promote literacy for the county as a whole while building up home libraries.  In fact,  around the world, one thing that has been shown to be a consistently powerful predictor of academic achievement is a home library. 

For upcoming Book Giveaway dates visit our programs calendar or contact the Literacy Coordinator.

Here are the top five reasons that we host youth book giveaways: 

  1.  79.3% of children who own books believe “the more I read, the better I become”
  2. 20% of children who don’t own books read below their grade level
  3. 34% of children who own books read "every day"
  4. 15.4% of children who don't own books "never read"
  5. Children who don't own books are 12.6% more likely to never visit a library


Raising A Reader (RAR) is a nationally recognized literacy program that promotes early language and literacy development.  The 10-week program is implemented once in the fall and once in the spring in partnership with First 5 Colusa and AmeriCorps. Based on First 5 California's Talk, Read, Sing platform, RAR uses a weekly Storytime to promote family literacy. Each session begins with a song, followed by a story and ended with an interactive activity that underscores the day's theme. Once the storytime is completed, each child goes home with a bag of library books to establish a family reading routine at home. The bags are rotated each week to encourage a love of reading and to provide parents and guardians with a set of resources to implement Talk, Read, Sing into their daily lives.  

RAR is a free program, and is offered at the Colusa, Stonyford, Grimes, Williams, and Maxwell branches.  Attendance is capped at 15 children per session, and registration begins in August for fall and February for spring.  For more information about RAR, contact the Literacy Coordinator.

Each summer, the Literacy Program hosts the Book to Movie Club for incoming Middle School and High School students.  Over the course of 8 weeks, participants read three books and watch the movie adaptations to compare and contrast versions.  This is done to not only foster a love of reading in children and aid in the prevention of the academic summer slide, but it also enhances critical thinking and discussion skills.  Books are announced and registration begins in May, and attendance is capped at 10 participants. 

For more information about the Summer Book to Movie Club, contact the Literacy Coordinator.