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1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is a program designed for you and your children ages 0-5!

The goal is to read 1,000 books to your child before they enter kindergarten! Reading to children stimulates imagination, helps caregivers and children bond, and forms good habits. By reading together daily, you are establishing a routine that could last a lifetime! Multiple studies have shown that children who are well read are more likely to succeed in school, but it has also been shown that as many as one in five children have difficulties learning to read. You can help your child succeed!

The concept is simple, and the reward is priceless!

+ Read a book to your child. 

+ Track the books. 

+ The goal is to read 1,000 books before they go into kindergarten.

You can even read the same book multiple times!

How it works

+ Sign up at the Preschool Desk on level 1 and receive the 1000BBK passport

+ Log every book you read in the passport

+ For every 100 books that you read to your child, stop by the preschool desk recieve a prize.  

+ For every 500 books, stop by the preschool desk recieve a milstone prize

+ 1,000 books, 1,000 memories, and an unparalleled head start in a lifetime of learning! Now it’s time to stop by the library to receive your grand prize!

Reading 1,000 books seems hard?

Don't worry! You have plenty of time. Reading 1 book a day equals 1,000 books in 3 years while reading 3 books a day equals 1,000 books in less than a year.

Resources for Parents

Parents of Babies

Learn more →

Parents of Toddlers

Learn more →

Reading Aloud

Learn more →

Tips for reading with babies & toddlers


Find a comfy place to read and snuggle up

This will help your child feel safe and secure. 

If you can, turn off all screens while you are reading

Creating an environment with fewer distractions makes it easier for you both to have a fun time reading!

Encourage them to take part in the reading process

Let your child help you turn the page! Ask them questions about the pictures and talk through the story as you read it. 

Choose books that your child will like

Baby and toddler friendly books usually have bright colors and bold words, and are often made of durable cardboard, soft material, or soft plastic so they can withstand a baby playing with them. Ask your child to pick out the book that you will read to them, This will get them more excited about reading time! 

Develop a daily reading routine

For example, always read before snack time or before your child takes a nap. Routines help young children feel secure because they are able to predict what will happen next. 

If your child is not having fun, put the book down

Reading should be fun! If your child is not in the mood for reading, do not be afraid to put the book down and try again later.


Most importantly, have fun!

There is no wrong way to read a book to your child! And have realistic expectations based on your child's age – your toddler's way of "listening" might be climbing all over you while you read!


Start reading today!

Themed Booklists

Find your next read →

125 Kids Books NYPL Love

Find your next read →


Any child is eligible to participate until they enter kindergarten. Yes, even babies!
It is self-paced so it can take a few months to a couple of years to complete – whatever works best with your schedule.
Any child who has not started kindergarten can participate. You can even have fun and read together as a family!
Sure! The benefits of 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten change and grow depending on the age of your child. You are welcome to complete it more than once, but we ask that you not do it more than once a year so we can continue to give out prizes.
It is up to you! The benefits of this program change and grow depending on the age of your child. Young babies and toddlers love being read to and will develop a love for reading through the daily routine. Preschool children will be motivated by seeing how many books they have read and will understand that reading 1,000 books is a big deal! They also get more excited about the prizes than babies and toddlers. Some parents enjoy keeping track of reading through our workbook while others would prefer to wait until a child is older and can engage more in the process.
Yes! We know that children find comfort in hearing the same story again and again, so please feel free to count the books you read multiple times to your child!
Every and any book counts in this program! Audiobooks, eBooks, books in different languages, or books that someone else reads to your child all count towards your 1,000 book goal!
Yes, every book counts, including those that are not in English! Reading books in the child’s native language will build strong pre-literacy skills.