Ready Reading Library is a bilingual library opened in October 2016 by two mothers, Mia Wang and Jane Fang. The space has lockers, a café, two classrooms that host arts and crafts activities, an arena for story tellers, and an outdoor space. Ready Reading also sells kids’ toys. A one-year membership costs RMB 1,280 and includes unlimited book borrowing throughout the year, 10 books borrowed at a time, online book ordering and free delivery/pick up, a 20 percent discount on new books, and an entrance ticket per session discounted to RMB 100. A single entry ticket includes access to the reading library, two cups of free coffee, unlimited stay for the day, and entry for one child and two adults.
Open daily, 9am-6pm. Guanghua Lu Soho, Level 15, Block 1 No.22 Guanghua Road, Chaoyang 朝阳区光华路SOHO一期一单元15层，光华路南侧，都是圈的那个楼 (5368 5569)
Peekabook Library was launched by two Chinese-American mothers and includes a vast collection of English language children’s books. The founders of the space are based in the US and bring children’s books to China with the goal of exposing children in Beijing to more Western books in an affordable way. At Peekabook, a full-year membership costs RMB 800, and half the year, RMB 500. The library also rewards kids for returning books, giving them RMB 1 each time. Membership also includes Chinese and English reading sessions twice a day and crafts classes in the afternoon.
Open Tues-Sun 9.30am-8.30pm. Room 203, #1 Building, Bishui Community, WanliuZhonglu, Haidian 海淀区万柳中路碧水云天社区1号楼底商302室 (8256 7276, WeChat: Peekabooklibrary_WL)
Our Little Library is tailored towards toddlers aged 1 to 4 years. The library hosts baby storytimes twice a week from 10-11.30am, Tuesdays for 1 to 2 year olds and Thursdays for 2 to 4 year olds. There is no membership fee and parents can sign up on WeChat and pay RMB 100 a session. Groups are small so registering beforehand is highly recommended. During a storytime, the group will engage in singing, storytelling, and will participate in other activities related to books. After that, attendees can borrow books for two weeks, paying a RMB 100 deposit which will be refunded upon their return. The library has mostly English and Chinese books and a small selection of books in other languages. The books are generally for ages 7 and below.
Open Tues and Thurs 10-11.30am. Beijing, Chaoyang, Sanlitun DRC 北京朝阳区三里屯外交公寓 (WeChat: skutella)
R3 Discovery aims to provide a space for children to read and discover the fun of learning English. Focused on children ages 5 to 12, R3 Discovery hosts reading programs for three different reading levels: guided reading, independent reading, and advanced reading. There is also a flexible schedule for weekends, seasonal workshops, and parenting talks and workshops held weekdays at 10-11am. There are no membership fees, and children go through reading assessments to find out which level reading group from which they would most benefit. Program fees are RMB 270/1.5 hrs.
Open Monday to Friday at 3.30- 5pm. InnCube, 9th Floor, Jingchao Building, No.5Nongzhan South Road, Chaoyang 朝阳区农展南路5号京朝 大厦9层众舍空间 (151 0160 5805, WeChat: R3Discovery, email@example.com)
The National Library of China 国家图书馆 is the largest library in Asia and the third largest in the world. In addition to holding the world’s largest collection of Chinese literature and historical sources, the NLC also has a peaceful children’s section for ages 15 and below. This section boasts hundreds of English-Mandarin bilingual books as well as books for China’s minority languages. Kids can enter the NLC Children’s Library by presenting a reader’s card or valid IDs. In order to get a reader’s card, children must be accompanied by an adult and show valid ID. All publications in the Children’s Library can only be read within the NLC and readers are only allowed to take three books off the shelf at a time.
Open Mon-Fri at 9am-5pm (open in public holidays). National Library of China, #33 ZhongguancunNandajie, Haidian 海淀区 中关村南大街33号 国家图书馆 (8854 5080, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Star Kids 书店 is open Mon-Fri, 10am-6pm. Room 201, Heng Tong Building, No. 1, Shun Chang Avenue, Nan Fa Xin Town, Shunyi 顺义区南法信空港物流园顺畅大道1号恒通大厦201号 (84727131, WeChat: StarKidschina, www.starkidschina.com, email@example.com)
Page One 叶一堂 has a wide variety of Chinese and English children’s books, at one point selling the Hunger Games book series. For addresses, hours of operation, and contact information, please refer to www.pageonegroup.com
The Poplar Kids Republic 蒲蒲兰绘本馆 provides kids with English language books that can help foster an appreciation for stories and language learning. Open daily 10am-7pm. Rm 1362, Bldg 13, Jianwai Soho, 39 Dongsanhuan Zhonglu, Chaoyang 朝阳区东三环中路39号建外Soho13号楼1362 (5869 3032)
The Bookworm 老书虫吧 hosts Bookworm Kids Club sessions every weekend. On Friday mornings from 10.30-11.30am, kids aged three months to 2 years can join in mom and baby activities. On Saturday mornings starting from 10.30am, children aged 4 to 10 can join the Bookworm for storytelling and crafts. The Bookworm has Chinese and English children’s and young adult books. Open daily from 9am to midnight. Courtyard 4, GongtiBeilu, Chaoyang 朝阳区工体北路4号院 (6586 9507, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Foreign Languages Bookstore 外文书店 has a wide variety of English books, mostly for ages 4 to 5. Open daily 9.30am-9pm. 235 Wangfujing Dajie, Dongcheng 东城区王府井大街235号 (6512 6911, email@example.com)
Sisyphe Bookstore has a wide variety of English language books including National Geographic Kids magazine, Captain Underpants, and picture books. Open daily 10am-10pm. L1 Building 1, Solana Mall, Chaoyang Park, Chaoyang 朝阳区朝阳公园蓝色港湾国际商区1号楼L1（14号线枣营站A出口）(5905 6490)
Photos courtesy of Ready Reading Library and R3
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