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State Grants to Libraries Purchasing



Strategic Purchasing Recommendations

The State Grants for Libraries funding has a focus on early literacy and early learning. Wondering how your library might make a strategic investment in this area? Our partners at the Colorado Library Consortium (CLiC) and Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy (CLEL) have some suggested packages for your library, including:



  • CLEL Silver Bell Award Winners - CLEL (Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy) announced the winners of the Silver Bells--titles selected as the best picture books of the last 25 years that support early literacy development in young children--on September 13, 2013. Check for this recommended list for libraries and families alike seeking strong titles for young children from birth to age 5. This list includes five books each in the categories of Read, Write, Sing, Talk and Play, which represent practices that research shows support early literacy development in young children. The site provides activity ideas for each title suitable for library storytimes, for childcare and preschool settings, and for exploration at home.


  • Databases – CLiC has negotiated cooperative purchase agreements with database vendors such as EBSCO, Britannica, Pebble Go and TumbleBooks Library.


  • Early Literacy Collection for Parents - Parents and caregivers will appreciate these books and DVDs focused on brain development in young children and early literacy. From simple activities that parents can do at home to instill early literacy skills to more in-depth titles, this list, recommended by CLEL, provides a range of strong resources for parents.


  • Early Literacy Professional Development Collection - These early literacy resources, recommended by CLEL, are ideal for library staff, students in early childhood education classes, and other students and professionals interested in instilling early literacy skills and the love of reading in young children.


  • Great Books for Babies - Sorted into eleven categories, this list from the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) offers titles that are great to read to babies, along with tips on selecting books most appropriate and effective for infants. The categories includes books with sharp color contrasts, nursery rhymes, objects to manipulate, and more. Classics and recent titles are featured and all are ideal to add to your board book collection.


  • Storytime Collection and Circulating Book Bags - Over the last few months, CLEL members have recommended great books to use during storytimes on a wide range of topics, from back to school to counting and more. All of the titles are ideal to read out loud to young children and instill the love of reading, as well as impart essential early literacy skills. These lists are great to add to a storytime collection; you can also build bags or backpacks around these topics that contain 5-10 of the recommended books that you can circulate to parents, childcare centers, and preschools for a themed, pre-packaged set of high-quality books (and such book bags are great to offer in conjunction with a 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program!). See the growing number of lists on different topics at

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