DIBS for Kids is a local non-profit dedicated to fostering a love of reading in kids, especially those in high-poverty Omaha schools.
DIBS stands for Delivering Infinite Bookshelves, and founder and Executive
Director David Orrick, a former teacher himself, says so far they have placed nearly 150,000 books in kids’ hands in six years. Orrick says their goal is to have every student read a good book at home every night. One of the ways they encourage this is by making the classroom the distribution point, rather than the school library.
“Just having a couple of laptops in each classroom that are on the DIBS website, a teacher is able to turn their classroom into essentially a library. And so by doing so, it unlocks all the classroom books and then all the DIBS books as well, for books that the students can also take home. Just by moving it into the classroom, the technology allows for the students to be checking their books in and out at a really high volume.”
In most cases, the book check in and out is student-led, using computer software that reads the QR codes on each book. Orrick says all the books they purchase have a reading level on them to help ensure students are taking home books they can read independently.
DIBS has been in only two OPS schools so far, Fontenelle and Adams Elementary, and they plan to add Rose Hill Elementary yet this year. Orrick says one of the ways they have been able to continue to grow is by having AmeriCorps VISTA volunteers.
For more information, the website is DIBSforkids.org