1000 Books before Kindergarten

Little Library Lane

We introduced you to the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten back in 2013 when Melissa started it with her third child. Since that time she’s started it with her fourth child and many more libraries have started the program.


1000 Books Before Kindergarten is a self-paced program to encourage literacy by promoting reading to newborns, infants, and toddlers and to encourage the parent-child bond. For most people, it will be a multi-year program starting when the child is 1-2 years old. You can start the program at any time from birth to age five. Each of the libraries has its own way of rewarding and logging the books that you read. If your library doesn’t have the program yet you can get your own reading logs from the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten Foundation’s website.

According to prior research in developmental psychology, a child aged zero through five benefits from listening to a caregiver read books aloud and will perform better in Kindergarten when prompted to read on his or her own… {from Antioch Public Library}

©T. Reubel | Little Lake County.com | 2015

We have been doing the program for almost two years now. I read to my kids every day already I thought it would be an easy, no-brainer of a task and the kids would a tote bag, books, and their picture on the wall of readers. We got the bag, for one kid, and one book…I have the hardest time remembering to write the books down! There is an app in the iTunes store if you are an apple user. We asked about the program on our fan page hoping to get some ideas or commiseration at least in our inability to log our reading (Loralie admits to dropping the program because she couldn’t keep up).

Turns out most of you are much better at logging than us, it’s okay we can still be friends.

One recommendation we got from a friend was to take a picture of the books.  She snaps a cell phone picture of the books before they read them and then she has the titles to go back and enter on her list. I have recently discovered that there is a barcode scanner on my Good Reads app. I just scan the book’s barcode and add it to a bookshelf named 1000 Books. It’s not perfect for books we read multiple times, but it’s a start and great for all those books, we read at the library!

1000 books before kindergarten

The Warren Newport Public Library {Gurnee} says: The single most important activity parents and caregivers can do to help children become successful readers is to read aloud to them every day. YOU are your child’s first and most important teacher and you can help them develop important early literacy skills.

What skills are they developing when you read to them? From the Warren-Newport Library:

Early Literacy Skills

So what are you waiting for? 1,000 books are totally easy even if you are a slacker and forget to write down every other one. Even if you just read one bedtime story a night for three years that’s 1,095 books!

These are the Lake County Libraries participating in 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Program, please see each library for individual reward systems and sign up instructions.

Looking for reading inspiration? Check out any of our bookshelf. The 1000 Books Before Kindergarten site has a list of Books Your Child Should Hear Before Kindergarten. Also, check out our Little Library Bookshelf on Pinterest.

Does your library have the program? Are you signed up? How are you at keeping track? Tell us about it in the comments!

1000 Books before Kindergarten
About Melissa Haak 626 Articles
Melissa is mom to 4. She used to dream of traveling the world, now she dreams of a clean kitchen. She can be found on most social media sites as @PBinmyHair because with this much hair and four kids, you're bound to find something in it.

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