By Kitty Felde

Over the years, I think I’ve been part of half a dozen different book clubs. The camaraderie, the book suggestions, the desserts – all made that special evening an important part of my life.

But why keep all the fun to ourselves?

There are several book clubs across the District of Columbia designed just for younger readers:

  • The DC Public Library hosts a Fantasy book club at the Takoma Park branch.
  • There’s a monthly book club for kids 8-12 at D.C.’s Chevy Chase Library.
  • A middle grade book club at the Southwest branch is listed on the D.C. Public Library website, as is a Mt. Pleasant Tweens Book Club, but no upcoming meetings are scheduled.
  • East City Bookshop hosts several book clubs for kids:
    • Page Turners is a monthly book club designed for readers between 8 and 11 years old.
    • Be(Tween) Reads is designed for readers between 11 and 13 years old.
    • Teen Arc is for readers 12 and older who want to read books not yet published.
  • Talk to your child’s teacher or school librarian. A number of schools host their own student book clubs.
  • Invite the award-winning Book Club for Kids podcast to your school or library so that your young reader can star on a future episode. (Check out the website It’s free.)

Or, you could start your own book club for your kids.

But how?

I asked an expert, Tonya Wright. She started the Girlfriends Book Club Baltimore a decade ago, almost as soon as her daughter and her friends could read.

Tonya offers her tips for starting a book club for kids:

  • Don’t be afraid to start small with 2-3 members
  • Allow the kids to select the books
  • Keep meeting times 1 hour or less
  • Make meeting times flexible
  • Don’t forget the snacks!

Snacks, conversation about a good book, community connections – those are the reasons we join book clubs. It’s the same reason kids love their book club as well.

Kitty Felde hosts the Book Club for Kids podcasts and writes the Fina Mendoza Mysteries series of middle grade novels, set on Capitol Hill and designed to introduce civics to kids.

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