How You and Your Child Can Read 1000 Books Before Kindergarten!

Reading out loud to your preschool-aged child is one of the most satisfying experiences you can have with them. Did you know that this same experience is the most important predictor of school success for your child?

As part of our commitment to early literacy in Grand Traverse County, the Traverse Area District Library (TADL) invites you to participate in 1000 Books Before Kindergarten at any of our member and branch libraries. 1000 Books Before Kindergarten is a self-paced, year-round program aimed at getting children ready to read by the time they enter kindergarten.

The premise is simple: read 1000 books before your child begins kindergarten. While it might sound daunting at first, reading 1 book a day for 3 years gets you to your goal (anyone can read to your child and repeats count). And we promise to make it fun along the way!

We have book logs as well as book suggestions at the library. For every 100 books read, stop by our Youth Services Desk and receive a small reading reward. Every March, we’ll celebrate all of our readers with a special Reading Month program and give away certificates and prizes to all of our finishers.

The concept is simple, the rewards are priceless. Read a book (any book) to your newborn, infant, and/or toddler. The goal is to have read 1000 books (yes, you can repeat books) before your precious one starts kindergarten. Does it sound hard? Not really if you think about it. If you read just 1 book a night, you will have read 365 books in a year. That is 730 books in two years and 1,095 books in three years. If you consider that most children start kindergarten at 5 years of age, you have more time than you think (so get started!).

The key is perseverance. Make it exciting and fun. For every 100 books you read together, bring your child to the library to receive a small reward. Make it to 1000 and receive a “I Read 1000 Books” book bag. Plus, you can chart your progress on the library’s 1000 Books wall.

If you have any questions about the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program, please visit or call any one of our network of community libraries. We look forward to accompanying your family on your reading journey and celebrating your family’s success!

How to participate

  • Read with your child. Studies have shown that reading with your child provides a great opportunity for bonding. Reading together is fun and will create life-long memories for the both of you.
  • Keep track of the number of books that you read with your child. Use the book logs from our handy portfolio case, keep track at our website, or write them down in a notebook. The book logs or notebook will be a great keepsake for your child.

Frequently asked questions

  • Who can participate? Any child from birth until he or she enters kindergarten can participate in the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program.
  • How long will the program take? The program will take anywhere from a few months to a few years. The program is self-paced and will depend on how often you read together.
  • How many of my children can participate? All of them (provided they have not yet started kindergarten). Make it even more fun and read as a family.