A recent trend in public libraries′ children’s services emphasizes the role of promoting school readiness. In order to gain a deeper understanding of the school readiness efforts present in storytime programs, this study observed and scored 68 public library preschool storytime sessions presented by 35 storytime providers across three states using the CLASS (Classroom Assessment Scoring System) measure. The CLASS evaluates adult-child interactions in learning environments within three domains related to positive outcomes in children’s school readiness: emotional support, classroom organization, and instructional support. Additionally, the study examined whether differences among CLASS scores were influenced by the population density of the library community, the storytime provider’s degree status and educational level, the provider’s prior teaching experience, the provider’s years of experience in children’s services, and the number of children participating in the storytime session. Results revealed that storytime providers score well in the CLASS’s emotional support and classroom organization dimensions but have room for improvement in the content-focused instructional support domain. Of the factors examined, only years of experience in children’s services was found to influence a provider’s CLASS score. These findings suggest that professional development programs should focus on preparing librarians to teach and model school readiness skills during storytime.

Document Type


Publication Date


Notes/Citation Information

Published in Early Childhood Education Journal.

© 2021 Springer Nature Switzerland AG.

This is a post-peer-review, pre-copyedit version of an article published in Early Childhood Education Journal. The final authenticated version is available online at: https://doi.org/10.1007/s10643-020-01133-6

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)


Funding Information

This work was supported by the Institute of Museum and Library Services [Federal Award Identification Number: LG-96-17-0199-17].