If you’re on a tight budget like me, any freebies you can get for your family are a blessing. This is especially so if you are or have a voracious reader (books ain’t cheap) or are homeschooling without $$$ to spend on stacks of books every year or semester. I gathered the following list and thought I would share the wealth to Get Free Kids Books.
I know, pretty obvious. But are you really utilizing your local library? Not only do you have hundreds and thousands of books to choose from on the shelves but you can also request books, take classes, and even meet up with community groups. If we can’t find what we’re looking for, we seek out the librarian (who my son knows well by now) and ask if we can get it from another library.
Also check out OverDrive – an app for your Kindle, iPad, phone, or computer that allows you to access books and audiobooks with our library card! This is great for thsoe of you who can’t get out easily to the physical library.
The Little Free Library program is essentially a map of where families and groups have posted small libraries on their properties. The idea is to leave a book, take a book. Make an adventure of it. Print off a map, mark their locations, and see how many you can visit.
In 1995, the country music superstar started Imagination Library to give free books to children in her home county in Tennessee. She wanted to help preschool-aged children develop a love of reading, even if their families couldn’t afford books. In 2000, she expanded the program to the U.S., Canada and the U.K.
Some of the books might have a Christian theme so if you have a non-Christian home, these might need to be monitored closely.
If you have a blog or any interest in reviewing books, you can get a NetGalley account. Here you can apply to review a variety of books including one for children. When you get them, read them to your kid(s) and ask what they thought about the story. Review it with them and submit to build up your review reputation and get more books!
Other review sites for free books include:
- Enchanted Book Promotions
- Lola’s Book Tour
- Story Cartel
- Library Thing (heads up, I’ve had a difficult time with this website but others enjoyed it so its on the list)
New Books are often put up in giveaways on Good Reads. Go through and apply for kids books and more. This site is also a great way to keep track of the books you and your family reads, review them, and make wish lists.
An online library of completely free kids books. Read online or download PDFs. I love that they can be downloaded and printed off for kiddos who have a hard time reading or focusing on the screen (or if you’re trying to limit screen time). The books are paid for by sponsored ads so the site is a little slow to load but totally worth it if you have a voracious reader.
Free Children’s Stories
Founded in 2008, freechildrenstories.com operates on the simple principle that children’s development is paramount. Our mission is to offer traditional, meaningful storytelling to every child, parent, or teacher around the globe with access to the internet, for free.
Barnes & Noble’s Summer Reading Program
Kids in 1st-6th grade can earn a free book by filling out the Summer Reading Journal. Just have your kids read eight books and write about their favorite parts of each one in the journal. Bring the journal into a local Barnes & Noble between Aug. 1 and Aug. 31, and your kids can pick out a book from a selected list.
Simply search for “children’s books, Kindle edition” and sort price “low to high” to see all the freebies. You don’t have to own a kindle (though if you want one, I highly recommend the Fire HD8 Kids, which is what I use for myself and Pumpkin). You can download the Kindle Cloud reader for free on your phone, iPad, laptop, desktop, etc.
Also check out eReaderIQ. eReaderIQ is a price tracking service for Kindle books. Our goal is to help you make faster, easier and smarter decisions when it comes to managing your Kindle. While there is a whole section for freebies, book prices fluctuate often. As such, you should always confirm the price of a book on Amazon.com prior to making any purchases. The price you see on Amazon.com is always the price you will pay for a book.
“Together with hugely generous supporters who share our vision, we have created a library of high quality children’s books that use the phonics approach. We want to get them out there. We want to get them read. And we want them to help the next generation of readers to reach their potential.” ~BookBot
BookBot does have a priced program that helps tutor children learning to read as well as access to more books. This is not mandatory to access the many free books they have.
If you live in California, Florida or Texas, Read Conmigo will mail you a book every four months. The program also have an extensive online library anyone can access. They also have a podcast and other resources for Parents and Teachers to help raise and teach bilingual children. I love this resources if, like me, you’re teaching Spanish to your little one as their second language.
International Children’s Library
The ICDL Foundation‘s goal is to build a collection of books that represents outstanding historical and contemporary books from throughout the world. Ultimately, the Foundation aspires to have every culture and language represented so that every child can know and appreciate the riches of children’s literature from the world community.
Many of the books on BookBub aren’t free – although they are low cost. However, there are quite a few free books available in the children’s eBooks section and the middle grade eBooks section as well. Just look at the price next to each title, and choose the ones that say “Free” next to them.
Join your local Freecycle program. My friends and I have scored free books, craft supplies, mason jars (who doesn’t need these?), bikes, and more from people in our community needing to rehome their stuff.
Library of Congress
Read.gov has an extensive collection of classic books for kids and families. Also, check out their site, especially the section on Books that Shaped America, if you are doing a US Government lesson in homeschool.
Project Gutenberg is a free library of over 60,000 books. You can get epub, Kindle, and PDF versions of many of them. Their kids books include classics like Alice in Wonderland, The Wind in the Willows, The Wizard of Oz, and Peter Pan.
Other Places to access classic books include:
ManyBooks was established in 2004 with the vision to provide an extensive library of books in digital format for free on the Internet. Many of the early eBooks are from the Project Gutenberg archives, which means you will be able to find a lot of classics on the site. They don’t just have classics though! They also have books from independent writers and publishers looking to get their work in front of more eyes.
A library of free animated ebooks for kids.
Bonus: How to Get Cheap Kids Books
Disclaimer: the following links may contain affiliate codes. This means if you make a purchase via these links I can receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. This money helps me keep Tea and Pumpkins going. Thank you.
KU isn’t just for romance novels that you don’t want people knowing you’re reading (is that just me?). You can also find great kids books on there from independent publishers.
Amazon Prime members can borrow books for free through the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, which allows users to borrow one book each calendar month. The program offers a wide range of kids’ books to pick from, but you’ll need Prime membership to read them.
Love love love this site. My aunt turned me onto it after she scored some old school Little Bear books on there.
Paperback Swap is a book swapping community. Its only almost free because you have to trade a book to get a book AND pay for shipping your book out. However, its a great way to get new books without cluttering your shelves.
Sometimes libraries have yearly sales. Sometimes they have a special set of shelves just for books for sale. The books are usually donated from people in the area. Sales go to support your local library! We’ve scored dvd’s like Disney’s The Sword in the Stone as well as favorite story books from these sales. Most books are a dollar or even less (our local library sales books for as little as 10 cents!).
I have made some major scores at thrift stories. Everything from tarot decks to whole kids book series can be found in these treasured, used shelves. Some thrift stores will even give you store credit when you donate your used items!
Yard Sales, Garage Sales (Online and IRL)
Not only a great way to score cheap books (were talking boxes of good finds for a couple of bucks) but you can also meet your neighbors. This can build relationships and if their kids outgrow something you might be the lucky family to get first pick next round.
Are You in the Know?
If you have a way to get free kids books that isn’t listed, please comment below and let us know!