Thousands of West Virginia elementary school students will receive free books this summer with help from the Dollywood Foundation and state and federal funds, officials said.

About 37,000 rising first- and second-grade students will each get five books. The first two should arrive by mail this month and three more will be sent next month, according to the state Department of Education.

The department said it used $208,000 in state funds and $557,000 in federal funds to help purchase and distribute the books and fund other aspects of the project. The foundation helped lower the overall cost of the initiative, officials said.

The books will be read aloud and paired with other educational activities online and on the Education Station show on West Virginia Public Broadcasting, said Monica DellaMea, executive director of the Office of Early and Elementary Learning.

DellaMea said the Imagination Library, started by the Dollywood Foundation, already provides about 360,000 books annually to children up to age 5.