For the third year in a row, the Chanute Public Library will once again continue its award-winning program, Litwits, a family reading challenge.

Started in 2022, the Litwits Family Reading Challenge is a way for families and their young readers to gather together and read. Once a month, families who sign up receive a free book from the library. Then, they take the book home and read it together as a family. Each month varies on the level of difficulty, ranging from picture books to chapter books, making this an inclusive family reading challenge for all reading levels and ages.

“Chanute Public Library wants to get books into the hands of kids,” Kandi Wilson, children’s librarian, said. “LitWits helps families build their home libraries at no cost to them.”

Once the family reads the book, they return a survey to the library. If the family turns in the survey every quarter, they receive a small prize bag. At the end of the year, families who finished three of the four quarters are invited to a party in January.

The goal of the challenge is to increase vocabulary and encourage the love of reading as well as build home libraries for families in Chanute. Research has shown that reading out loud together as a family helps not only with vocabulary and literacy skills but creates positive memories associated with reading and will help encourage all family members to read more

“This is truly a community project,” Jeana Lawrence, Chanute Public Library director, said. “Through many community partnerships and donations, we are able to provide these books for our local families. We appreciate all of our community sponsors for supporting us in the past and hope we can continue this program for years to come.”

Families can now sign up for the 2024 Litwits challenge. The first book of the year is Trumpet of the Swan by E.B. White. To sign up, families must sign up at the library and pick up their first book. Spots are limited. Families who have participated before or haven’t yet are encouraged to sign up before the end of January.

Litwits families who have completed the 2023 Challenge are invited to join the library at Central Park Pavilion on Friday, January 12th from 5 – 7 pm. Dinner and refreshments will be served. In the case of bad weather, the library will reschedule the party for January 26th.