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Every 4-9 year old in Schenectady can learn to read and have fun doing it!


Come Join Us! Whether you are looking for an organization that can help your child learn to read or if you are looking for a volunteer opportunity. You've come to the right place:                  

The Reading Is Fun Program


This program is designed to help children in the city of Schenectady. If you would like a volunteer to work with a child, or request help for your child please go to the Contact Us page and send us a message.



Mission Statement

The Reading is Fun Program (RIF)

mobilizes volunteers to reinforce reading-readiness and conversational skills and vocabulary to Schenectady's most challenged  youngsters ages 4-9.

The Reading Is Fun Program is free of charge to its participants. The program will gladly accept donations to help defray the costs associated with administering  the program. Please click Donate on the menu bar above to see how you can send in your donations.

So far this school year we have 94 volunteers working  with 206 students throughout the 11 elementary schools.  


Donate Books!

We are looking for books for ages 4-9 that are in very good to new condition.  In particular we are looking for Early Readers, Early Chapter Books, Sight Word Books.  Especially welcome are books with diverse characters.  We will also accept very gently used art supplies and games.  Please go to the contact us page to email us and we will set up a collection day/time.  THANK YOU!"

·   Suggestions for Type of books we need

Early readers - books with large print and limited vocabulary i.e. Step Into Reading; I Can Read; etc. with a 1 or 2 on the cover

·  Dr. Seuss books - Hop on Pop, Fox in Socks, The Foot/Nose/Ear etc. Book, 10 Apples Up On Top, Put Me In The Zoo. But not Seuss books based on the recent PBS series or the longer books like Horton Hears a Who or Yertle the Turtle, etc. They are too difficult for our students.

·  Popular Character books - Peppa Pig, Paw Patrol, PJ Masks, Fly Guy, Pete the Cat, Super Heros, Lego, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Dora, 

·  Classic themes - princess, unicorn, trucks, etc.

·  Classic books - Eric Carle (brown bear, polar bear, caterpillar), Eve Bunting, Rhyming, Going on a Bear Hunt, Itsy Bitsy Spider, etc.

·  Newer classics - Mo Willems, Ted Arnold, Froggy books, 

·  Non-Fiction - Easy reader (no higher than a 2 on the cover) about animals, etc.

Volunteers Needed



Go to the Volunteer Page to learn more and sign up.  

For more information and to volunteer

Already a volunteer see Library Hours.


Click here:  


The Program


It is our goal that every 4-year-old to 9-year-old in Schenectady learn the letters in the alphabet and their sounds and have fun doing it!  Conversational skills are used to help youngsters develop vocabulary to help build the basis for them to be successful in school and throughout life.  


Volunteers read books to or with students depending on the students reading level.  Games are often used to help with letter recognition and sight words.  Books are provided to volunteers and are given to the students to build a home library.


Sessions occur:

1. Once a week at convenient times

2. For 30–60 minute sessions

No teaching experience is necessary to volunteer. Volunteers are trained in one-hour sessions conducted by literacy educators and reading teachers.  We also are offering virtual training, so volunteers feel comfortable with Google Meet which is how we are working with students currently. 

"Once you learn to read, you will be forever free." - Frederick Douglass


"Children are made readers on the laps of their parents." — Emilie Buchwald

Want to learn more about our program.
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