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5 Ways REACH Literacy Got More Books to More Teachers

For the past three years, REACH Literacy has offered free children’s books to teachers through a grant application process to receive 25 gently used books for their classrooms. While this process was easy and efficient on REACH Literacy’s end, it was not the case for all the teachers we hoped to reach. Many teachers couldn’t find time in their busy schedules to pick up the books within the REACH bookstore’s hours of operation.

To alleviate these issues, REACH updated its teacher grants in 2022 to be easier, more efficient and more effective for both teachers and REACH. Here are five ways we did that:

  1. We curated a huge collection of more than 2,000 children’s books—sorted by category and reading level—for teachers to choose from

  2. We adjusted the book pick-up dates to two weekdays when school was not in session, allowing teachers more flexibility and a wider window of time to select books.

  3. We promoted the teacher grants and dates for pick-up in our newsletter, in a Facebook event, and with the Sioux Falls School System to share with teachers.

  4. We made the teacher grants walk-in, where teachers simply bring their ID for verification and grant approval, and they are able to immediately pick out 25 children’s books.

  5. We made sure plenty of volunteers were available throughout the pick-up times to answer questions, find books, distract kids and offer support to teachers.

In 2021, we gave away nearly 1,800 books through teacher grants the entire year.

In 2022, we gave away more than 2,000 books in two days.

We will continue offering walk-in teacher grants every quarter for the rest of 2022, building on the great success we saw with our first giveaway in the year. REACH’s goal is to give away 25,000 children’s books this year in support of community literacy, and our community’s teachers are a vital part of sharing, promoting and realizing that goal. Remember, keep donating your gently used books.


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