Reading by 9

reading by 9 2019 lead art

Reading by 9 is a bilingual guide for parents and educators to help kids read at the appropriate level by age 9, a crucial indicator of future academic success.

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Dear parents, teachers and educators,

Each time a child picks up a book, he or she enters a world of learning. It doesn’t matter if the main character is a boy wizard, a famished caterpillar or a fancy young girl who dreams of Paris. The key to building a strong foundation in literacy is allowing children to pick up the books they love. When children read, they discover new places and new ideas and develop literacy skills they will continue to use as they make their way through high school and beyond.

We need to do more to encourage children to read.

Far too many children lack the critical skills needed to engage with reading. Nearly 58% of the students in the Los Angeles Unified School District who took the California Assessment of Student Performance and Progress failed to meet English language arts and literacy standards in 2018. In order to build a strong foundation for students, we must shrink this number. Students who read at age level are more likely to graduate from high school. Reading opens doors to academic fulfillment, career readiness and opportunities throughout a child’s life.

The Reading by 9 annual publication, “How to Raise a Reader,” was developed in partnership with Access Books, an independent nonprofit dedicated to renovating school libraries and ensuring that children have access to quality literacy resources. The guide, available in English and Spanish, is free — and has tips and ideas for incorporating reading into a child’s daily life. Its recommendations — books, local literacy resources and more — highlight the value of encouraging students to read books they are interested in.


The guide is distributed to parents, teachers and educators throughout California with the help of community-based organizations and schools. It’s also available in print.

Thank you for reading!
Chris Argentieri
Chief Operating Officer
Los Angeles Times

Tips and Tricks

Tips for raising a bilingual reader
  • Read with your children in your native language.
    Reading in any language helps kids develop literacy skills.

  • Discuss books in a language other than English.
    Get children to synthesize what they read and actively use the language.

  • Stay consistent.
    Encourage kids to use their second language often. Have them listen to TV and CDs in the language.

Book recommendations
For preschool and kindergarten


For first and second graders

For third and fourth graders

Local resources

There are many organizations around Los Angeles and Orange counties that provide families with literacy resources and support services. Visit your local library for access to computers, free Wi-Fi and books for all ages.

Central Los Angeles
1714 W. Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90026
(213) 413-3388

Abriendo Puertas/Opening Doors
1000 N. Alameda St., #240
Los Angeles, CA 90012

Pathways LA
3325 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1100


Los Angeles, CA 90010

Ready, Set, Read
1000 N. Alameda St., #240
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(818) 986 - 9867

South Los Angeles
South Central LAMP
892 E. 48th St.
Los Angeles, CA 90011

Southeast Los Angeles
Mexican American Opportunity Foundation
6113 Clara St.
Bell Gardens, CA 90201

East Los Angeles
Koreatown Youth and Community Center
3727 W. 6th St., #300
Los Angeles, CA 90020

Proyecto Pastoral
420 N Soto St.
Los Angeles, CA 90033

West Los Angeles
Allies for Every Child
12120 Wagner St.
Culver City, CA 90230

Mar Vista Family Center Preschool
5075 S. Slauson Ave.
Culver City, CA 90230

San Fernando Valley
CSUN LA Times Literacy Center
18111 Nordhoff St.
Northridge, CA 91330

Families Forward Learning Center
980 N. Fair Oaks Pasadena, CA 91103

Orange County
Hands Together
201 Civic Center Drive
East Santa Ana, CA 92701

Orange Children & Parents Together
1063 N. Glassell St.
Orange, CA 92867

Parentis Foundation
24012 Calle de la Plata, Suite 400
Laguna Hills, CA 92653

Los Angeles Public Library
72 branches throughout the city

Orange County Public Libraries
33 branches throughout the county
(714) 566-3000


This supplement did not involve the editorial or reporting staff of the Los Angeles Times except where noted.

To order additional copies or download a digital version of the 2019 parent reading guide, visit The guide is free to parents, educators and organizations working with children and families. To contact us with comments and questions or to receive more information, email

Los Angeles Times Public Affairs manages philanthropy, community engagement and corporate social responsibility at the nation’s largest metropolitan daily news organization. We broaden perspectives, empower storytellers and inspire our community to question and transform the world around them. For more information, visit

Access Books is a volunteer-run organization dedicated to transforming school libraries in Los Angeles’ most underserved neighborhoods. Each library served receives thousands of new, quality books, a new coat of paint, and dozens of literacy-themed murals that make the library more inviting. For more information, visit

Los Angeles Times and Access Books