Before I started kindergarten, one of my absolute favourite things to do was walk down the street to my local library for storytime. My mom would bundle up me and my brother and take us there for hours. We listened to stories, made crafts and then took home massive bags full of picture books for the next week.
Of course, those things aren't exactly options right now, but there are still ways your kiddos can engage in storytime and have books read to them by celebrities like Rashida Jones, Kristen Bell and James Earl Jones. It's a service called Storyline Online that's available to you, well, online – all for FREE.
No paid subscription is required, and to get started, all you have to do is select a title. Once you click on a book, Storyline Online will prompt you to choose your favourite video player: School Tube, YouTube or Vimeo. Make your decision, and then start watching! Just note that some may be audio recordings only.
Some of these are just as fun for parents and adults as they are for kids. I clicked on Mark Duplass' reading of When a Dragon Moves In right away, because I know and love him from The League. I also spotted stories read by Oprah Winfrey, Rose Byrne, Wanda Sykes, Karan Brar, Sarah Silverman, Al Gore and Betty White.
While it's a completely free resource during the COVID-19 pandemic, Storyline Online is accepting donations to help them keep the service up and running. You can even choose how you'd like your donation to help them or other organizations, including a COVID-19 disaster fund and different scholarships.
And if you somehow work your way through their entire library, know that a few other places out there are offering a similar service. I've seen different live readings pop up on Instagram stories and feeds lately, one of which is run by Mastermind Toys and happens every weekday morning at 10 AM ET.