Simple Steps to Success: Read


Early literacy skills are a vital part of a young child's journey. As kids hear and see more words, they acquire knowledge that allows them to build on what they've already learned, helping them get ready to learn to read when they go to school.

The library and our staff are at the front lines of assisting with early literacy, and many of our programs and crafts are aimed at helping families build those skills. One such program is Simple Steps to Success, which helps families understand they can promote early literacy skills wherever they are.

Our Community Outreach Librarian, Maddie Bassman, has worked in early literacy for several years. Maddie is a passionate advocate for literacy for all ages in the Des Moines Community. Since 2014 she has worked the Central Library and East Side Library in various roles, engaging families with literacy support both in the library and out in community settings. 

Each Monday over the next five weeks, she'll talk about one of the Simple Steps, explaining why it's important and giving some advice on how to incorporate it into your daily life. She's starting this week with READ. 

We're running a Simple Steps contest where you can win a Simple Steps kit to play with at home. Check out our Simple Steps page for more info! And don't forget to borrow one of our Simple Steps early literacy kits, complete with tons of fun activities and games for you and your child to do as you build early literacy skills.


Community Outreach Librarian Maddie Bassman


Maddie on how reading helps build early literacy skills:


Reading with your little one is one of the best things you can do to help them succeed in school. Finding books you enjoy together, taking time each day to share stories, and visiting the library are all ways to strengthen early literacy skills, especially reading! When children listen to you read them books, it helps them learn new words, develop empathy, and learn about the world around them.

Reading together builds a positive relationship around books, and that bonding time creates lifelong readers. When you build reading into your child’s routine from birth, it creates so many possibilities in their brains for new growth and development and will help them as they learn to read books later on.


A parent and child
A parent and child play with one of our Simple Steps kits.

Be sure to check our Events page to find Simple Steps-themed programs and crafts that start this week and continue over the next several weeks.

Read Tips Graphic


Published on January 24, 2022
Last Modified August 12, 2022