1,000 Books Before Kindergarten – A New Look

Are you ready for a challenge? Whether you are already participating or looking to join, our redesigned 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Reading Program will make sharing and tracking the books with the children in your care easier.

Research shows that sharing books, conversations, and songs with young children helps build their language skills, contributes to their healthy development, gives them the skills they need to succeed in school, and develops a lifelong love of reading.

This new design features simple single-page reading logs for every 100 books you share with your child. Instead of remembering the different titles or authors of each book shared, now all you do is fill in a circle on the log.

How to Play

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is a free program that encourages you to share 1,000 stories with your child before they enter kindergarten.

Sharing 1,000 books is easier than you think!

You can reach 1,000 by sharing three books a day for one year = 1,095 books or one book a day for three years = 1,095 books.

Did we mention that re-reading a story counts towards your log? Children love repetition and hearing the same story over and over again. All of those re-reads can be marked on your reading log!

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is a self-paced program with no deadline except your child's first day of school. You decide how many books you share and when.

You can log any book shared with your child, that includes books read by siblings, books your child looks through independently, and books read by library staff, family, or friends. You can also count each re-read of a book as well.

Celebrate your milestones with us at the library as you explore new stories and revisit past favorites. We're always happy to recommend fantastic reads on your road to 1,000 books.

You can also play online using the library's Beanstack account. Register and add the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Reading Challenge to your account. Once you've reached 1,000 Books visit your nearest branch library to pick up your completion certificate and completion prize!

Program FAQs

I've been using the reading log booklet to track the books I share with my child. Will I need to start all over with the new reading logs?

No, you don't! The library will still honor the older reading logs for milestone stickers and completion prizes.

Do I have to use paper logs to participate?

Paper logs are just one way to participate. You can also participate virtually through the library's Beanstack account. Note that using the online version will still require tracking the titles of the stories shared.

What languages are the logs available in?

You can pick up the reading logs in English, Spanish, Chinese, or Vietnamese.

When can I sign up my child to participate in the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Reading Program?

You can start right from birth! We share stories with young children all the time. 1,000 Books is a great way to share stories with children from birth to 5 (and beyond!).

Where can I pick a reading log? Pick up a reading log at any one of our 25 SJPL Branch Library locations. Visit the information desk and ask to join the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Reading Program.

Can we read the same book multiple times?

Absolutely! If your child has a favorite book, feel free to count it every time you read it together.

If re-reading a favorite title, just be sure when logging your books online to increase the total count for How many times was this book read?

Do books read at Storytimes count towards the 1,000 Books Reading Logs?

Yes they do! As a bonus, your local librarian can recommend more fantastic titles for you and your child to share after storytime.

Can I count the books a caregiver or preschool teacher read to my child?

Absolutely! All books shared with your child by anyone count towards the log. If you catch your child looking through a book independently, that also counts!