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1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is a self-paced program that encourages families to read to their children up to six years old. Decide when and how long to read to your child, and receive reading incentives along the way.


Who can enter the program?

Children from birth through the start of kindergarten. Please use the chart below as a guideline to reach 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten based on your child's age.

Child's AgeBooks/DayBooks/Week
0 years 1 4
1 year 1 5
2 years 1 7
3 years 2 10
4 years 3 20

What are the goals of the program?

  • To encourage families to read aloud to their young children
  • To introduce children to a variety of books
  • To promote early literacy so children can enter school ready to learn
  • To reinforce parents' role as their child's first teachers
  • To encourage families to regularly use the library for lifelong learning

How does the program work?

  • Register your child at the Youth Services Reference Desk
  • Select age-appropriate books for your child
  • Read aloud to your child according to the reading guidelines
  • Record each title on your reading log sheet. Books read at the library, story time, daycare centers, and preschools may be counted
  • Return your completed reading log to Youth Services. You will receive an incentive for your child and the next reading log
  • When you have read 1,000 books, you and your child will receive a special gift and a certificate of completion
  • Then, join us for a graduation party for all children who have completed the program during the prior year

Why should I participate in this program?

The program will help your child build the following early literacy skills:

Vocabulary
Knowing the specific names of things

Print motivation
Developing an interest and an enjoyment of books

Print awareness
Knowing how to handle a book and how to follow the words on a page

Letter recognition
Knowing that letters have names, are different from each other, and that specific sounds go with specific letters

Phonological awareness
Being able to hear and play with the smaller sounds in words

Narrative skills
Being able to describe things, events, and tell stories