Purpose

Read & Reach: A Resource for Promoting Physical Activity in Storytime Programs will provide children’s librarians across the United States with a comprehensive resource of children’s books that encourage physical activity. The resource will provide detailed description of each book, and will include information to assist the librarian in developing programs that involve the book. Incorporating books about physical activity into storytimes and programs will expose children to healthy habits at an early age that can reduce the risk of childhood obesity and related health conditions. Emphasizing healthy lifestyle choices in children’s programming will also reach the parents that are in attendance, in order to encourage them to incorporate healthy lifestyle habits.

Read & Reach will also demonstrate how the library can encourage health promotion, specifically in rural and underserved communities. The library will be promoted as a safe place for children to engage in physical activity, in a controlled and supervised setting. A librarian’s use of Read & Reach will also help the community to view the library as a resource for learning about healthy life habits. Read & Reach will demonstrate how the community public library can fill in the gaps for access to knowledge and information for rural and underserved communities. Finally, Read & Reach will serve as an example for children’s programming as an outlet for health promotion, disease prevention, and to combat the children’s obesity epidemic.