#Welcome to the JaxKids Book Club
The JaxKids Book Club was established in 2005. It provides all Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) children in Duval County with a backpack of 8-10 books that feature local attractions, a “Flat Pete” dog cut out, a bookmark, and My First Library Card.
The purpose of the JaxKids Book Club is to encourage family literacy, especially in the months before Kindergarten starts, so little ones are primed and ready to learn to read...and enjoy it!
The Backpack: Let’s break down the contents of the backpack (which happens to be the perfect size for a Kindergartner to use!):
The Books: The books feature local attractions in Jacksonville, such as the Jacksonville Zoo & Gardens, the beaches, area museums, the Library, and more. Families can learn together about the points of interest where they live. At the end of each book are a few pages containing family literacy activities. These include questions to ask before, during, and after reading the book, as well as a craft activity, a simple snack recipe, and a song, each themed to the book.
“Flat Pete”: Pete the Dog is character featured in every book, so a flat cut-out version is included in the backpack, encouraging children to share their own adventures with Pete!
My First Library Card: Each bag contains My First Library Card and brief instructions on how to sign up for and activate an E-Card that can be used to sign up for summer learning programs and to check out digital materials. This is the gateway to a lifetime of library membership and all that it offers: books, DVDs, audiobooks, programming, digital materials, content streaming services, and more!
#How Do You Get a Backpack?
The majority of the backpacks are directly distributed to all Duval County VPKs (public and private) in the month before school dismisses for the summer. If a child doesn’t receive a backpack through a VPK, they may get one from the Children’s Department at any Jacksonville Public Library Jacksonville Public Library branch.
The Library has several opportunities to learn with JaxKids Book Club friends:
- April-May: some VPKs receive a visit from Library staff who present a story time program to promote the upcoming JaxKids Book Club backpack distribution
- June-July: there is a six-week themed summer reading program series just for the JaxKids Book Club.
- Occasionally throughout the year, there are special JaxKids Book Club events at select libraries.
The JaxKids Book Club would like to thank the following corporations who have shown that literacy and putting children first is a priority for Jacksonville. Without the generous support of these corporations, the program
would not be in existence today.