Days spent at the laundromat can often be incredibly boring, especially for children waiting on their parents. But, instead of asking kids to entertain themselves by watching the rinse cycle, librarians are visiting locations so they can read to the children.

The Too Small to Fail initiative has been trying to improve children’s literacy by bringing books, story time, and reading groups to unusual community spaces, such as laundromats.

The program is especially beneficial for closing the literacy gap between children from lower and higher-income families.

Though the organization has been operating in various locations across the country, they recently conducted a study on the efficacy of their reading programs in six New York laundromats.

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Every weekend, volunteer librarians would team up with laundromat owners in order to transform a corner of the facility into a learning corner equipped with educational toys and books.

According to Education Week, the initiatives had a dramatic impact on the children’s reading abilities, especially when parents joined in on the fun.

“We have the right audience … parents and kids who need the most help when it comes to literacy and access to books,” Brian Wallace, president and CEO of the Coin Laundry Association, told Education Week. “Rather than watch the socks tumble … use that time and make it more productive.”

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