Winter Bingo at the Oakland Public Library Gives Children and Families a Chance to Read and Play During School Break

Release Date

Wed, 11/19/2014

In December, the library will distribute cards for its new “Winter Bingo” game, encouraging children in grades K-5, and parents of younger children and babies, to do activities that stimulate literacy and learning.  Any child or parent may return a bingo card with five activities marked in a row to any Oakland Public Library between December 18, 2014, and January 31, 2015, to select a free paperback book to keep, as a prize.

Activities include direct reading activities such as “Listen to a story” or “Read about your favorite thing” as well as social activities such as “Make someone laugh,” or “Bring a friend to the library,” and active play such as “Dance” or “Play outside.”  Activities for parents to do with babies and preschoolers include “Use a recipe to make a snack,” and “Ask your child to turn the page.”  Bingo cards will be available at all library locations and distributed to partner organizations, and are available in Spanish, Chinese, and English.

“We hope this is a simple and fun game that promotes family engagement around reading as a daily activity,” says Nina Lindsay Supervising Librarian for Children’s Services.  “We’ve had many requests for more reading incentive activities similar to our Summer Reading Game.  We hope this helps fill the gap during Winter Break, and helps to further the goals of the Oakland Reads 2020 initiative.” 

Lindsay notes that the library is putting even more focus into selecting culturally diverse books for its prizes; this has always been a goal of the library but has been a renewed campaign in collaboration with #WeNeedDiverseBooks and Equal Read.

To kick off this first season of Winter Bingo, the library is pleased to host a visit from celebrated children’s and young adult author Mitali Perkins. Join her at the Dimond Branch on Thursday, December 11th at 10:30am as she discusses writing, books, and life between cultures.  Ms. Perkins’ visit is sponsored by Equal Read.

Winter Bingo is made possible in part by support from The Kenneth Rainin Foundation.

For more information, please visit or contact Nina Lindsay, Supervising Librarian for Children’s Services, at, or 510-238-6706.



Press Release (printable PDF)

Winter bingo flyer (click and print)