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Education Matters

One Thousand Books Before Kindergarten

January 1st, 2016

By Jill Griffith

One of the most important things that public libraries do is to create young readers through early literacy initiatives.  Children from birth to age 5 are encouraged to use library programs and services  to ensure that they will enter school ready to learn to read, write and listen.  

The first 2,000 days of a child’s life are the most critical to learning and development.  These are the pre-kindergarten years. In addition to regular early literacy programs for children – Baby Fun, Toddler Fun, Preschool Fun, Family Fun and Books Before Bedtime Pajama Fun – Red Deer Public Library has introduced a program at all three of its branches  called “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten” to encourage family literacy during a child’s first 2,000 days.  The mantra of the 1,000 Books Foundation, a Nevada non-profit public charity, is “The concept is simple, the rewards a priceless!”  Read a book, any book, to your newborn, infant, and/or toddler.  Any book read by anybody counts, and you can even read that same favourite book over and over again.  The goal is to have read 1,000 books together by the time your child starts kindergarten.  Think of it!  If you read just one book a day, you will have read 365 books in a year and you could finish in less than three years.

The program is free of charge, and registration is as easy as visiting any of our three library branches – Dawe, Timberlands or Downtown.  You will receive a logbook for the first 100 books, a free board book to get you started, and an information guide that explains the program, gives you reading tips, and talks about important early literacy skills.  As well, there is an app you can download to either your Apple or Android device with fun features both you and your children can use once you’ve registered.

Learn more at and  Get on board the reading train, and prepare your child for lifelong learning success.  Most importantly, read, snuggle and have fun reading as a family.  Join us on January 27th , 2016 to celebrate Family Literacy Day with Toddler Fun, Preschool Fun, book giveaways and snacks at the Downtown Branch, and make it a habit and celebrate family literacy every single day.

Here are a few books to get you started, available at the Library when you come to register.

  • Guess How Much I Love You by Sam McBratney
  • Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin
  • Is Your Mama a Llama? by Deborah Guarino
  • The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
  • Where is the Green Sheep? by Mem Fox
  • Where’s My Teddy? by Jez Alborough
  • Olivia by Ian Falconer
  • Kitten’s First Full Moon by Kevin Henkes
  • Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? by Bill Martin
  • The Napping House by Audrey Wood
Tags: Books, kids

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