By reading 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten, you are taking advantage of the time when your child’s brain is developing fastest and laying the foundation for future success. Establishing a daily reading routine with your child--even when they are a baby--will lead to a love of reading and strong bonds between child and caregiver.

The Library is here to help! Track your progress to 1,000 books and we’ll support you along the way with book recommendations, literacy tips and free books for your home.

Give the child in your life a head start for years to come!

To participate, you can go to any St. Louis Public Library location to register and receive a booklet for logging the books your child reads. You can also enter your information below to receive instructions on how to participate online and join our quarterly newsletter list.

1K Books Before Kindergarten

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  • Child's Name * Required
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FAQs

How does this program work?
After receiving your booklet or signing up for Beanstack, keep track of all books you read to the child or the child has read. After every 100 books read, visit any SLPL location for your prize! After every 100 books read, visit any SLPL location to receive a sticker and a book. After your child has read 1,000 books, they will receive a sticker, two books, a Kindergarten Readiness Kit and a backpack!

Who can participate?
Any child who has not yet started kindergarten can participate.

How do I keep track of the books we’ve read?
There are two ways. You can electronically keep track of your books here or visit your local branch for a paper log.

How do I use Beanstack?
After creating an account for your child and registering for this program, you simply log in and enter the books you read. Or, you can download the Beanstack app and log the books you've read by scanning them with your phone! You can find more information about the app on the Beanstack site or ask a Library Staff member.

Do I have to have a library card to participate?
No, you do not.

Do you have to read 1,000 different books?
No! Repetition when learning to read is important, so if your child wants to read a book over and over, count each reread as a book.

How long will the program take?
It depends! Since it is self-paced, it can take a few months or a few years.

Can you participate at any branch?
Yes! As long as you have your log with you or you utilize Beanstack, you can go to any branch to participate.

What types of materials count towards the goal?
Print books, digital books and audiobooks all count towards the goal.

Do the books have to be Library books?
No. Although we have many fantastic books at SLPL, the books could be ones you have at home, at grandma’s or at daycare.

How can I possibly read 1,000 books before kindergarten?
You’ll find that it’s actually quite easy! To read 1,000 books in a year, you’d only have to read three a day (and that will put you over your goal!). To read 1,000 books in three years, you’d only have to read one a day!

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