Back to top

Summer Reading (We Read)

We Read Nosotros Leemos

What is We Read?

We Read is a year-round, all-ages, community wide celebration of all kinds of reading. To participate, Madisonians can simply find something to read that they love, share it with a friend or on social media and join in the conversation about reading using the hashtag #WeReadMadison. There are a variety of ways for Madisonians to engage with We Read through their neighborhood library and out in the community.

Your library is here to celebrate with you! Everyone is invited to stop into the library to pick up your official We Read items, which vary throughout the year, but could include a We Read tote bag, coloring sheets, stickers and more.

For adults, ask one of our librarians about a book club kit to read with your friends, or be sure to join in the fun with what you are reading and how you are reading on social media. Plus, we've got a great selection of book lists that cover lots of genres and topics. Check them out now!

We Read is funded by Madison Public Library Foundation, Steve Stricker American Family Insurance Foundation, Dick Goldberg & Lisa Munro and Jane Doughty and David Wood.

We Read Activities

We have ongoing events for kids and families throughout the year for We Read. The team will be handing out lots of giveaways at library locations and on the Dream Bus, as well as providing grab-and-go Mini-Maker Kits from the Bubbler, hosting Serendipity Saturdays at various library locations and having Storytimes and other family events. 

We Read Youth Voices AnthologyWe Read: Youth Voices Writer's Contest

Madison Public Library and Forward Madison FC are teaming up to promote reading, literacy, and youth voices. Learn more about the partnership!

This summer, Madison Public Library, Forward Madison, and the Wisconsin Book Festival partnered to host the We Read: Youth Voices writer’s competition. Aspiring writers aged 18 and under submitted short stories, poems, songs, etc. between June 12-September 17, 2021. In October, our panel of community judges selected the winners and finalists! Our librarians have put together a We Read Youth Voices Anthology featuring stories submitted during the contest. Head over to to learn more about the contest and visit to read and listen to the stories! 

The contest is sponsored by the Madison Public Library Foundation.

We Read Storytimes:

These storytimes cater to different ages of kiddos and will include songs, games and interactive activities. See upcoming storytimes by viewing our public calendar. See upcoming storytimes!We Read to Babies and Toddlers 

We Read to Babies & Toddlers:

Your librarians have created a book of rhymes and songs for babies and toddlers as part of We Read! You can pick up copies of this booklet at your local library, scan the QR code using your smart phone's camera and access songs on the go. Thanks to the many librarians who contributed their singing talent to creating this fun resource for families! Hear the songs online.

How Can I Participate?

We want to celebrate your reading and perhaps connect you with other folks across the city who are readers just like you and want to share their favorites, too!  

  • Recommend your favorite book with a photo or video
  • Take a photo/video of yourself reading 
  • Make a video showing how or where you read
  • Tell us about your reading through lyrics, poetry, art, or however else you feel comfortable

Be sure to follow @MadisonPublicLibrary on Instagram and use the hashtag #WeReadMadison so we can share your creativity!

    Apply for a Library Card

    While you're practicing social-distancing by remaining at home and avoiding crowds, you can still access many of Madison Public Library's digital resources with your library card. If you don't already have a valid library card, you can apply for one online. There are two card options: Virtual and Full Use.

    Get a Virtual Card

    Access ebooks, audiobooks, newspapers, magazines and online databases

    Get a Full Use Card

    Access all digital and physical materials, including books via curbside pickup, and DVD and vinyl collections

    Social Media

    Like/Follow/Tag @madisonpubliclibrary

    Use #WeReadMadison if you’d like to participate. We’ll feature your photos/videos on our page and in our stories!

    Access our Media Kit for graphics, press release and an email template for easy sharing.

    Want to get We Read updates in your inbox?

    Sign up for our Library Kids newsletter!

    * indicates required

    For more details on we will use this information, visit How We Use Your Data.