1000 Books Before Kindergarten

Giving Young Children the Tools to Become Successful Readers

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten encourages all families and caregivers to read one thousand books with their children before they enter kindergarten.

Studies have shown that families who start reading aloud to their children at birth help to strengthen their language skills and build their vocabulary – two important tools for beginning to learn to read when they enter kindergarten.

Sign up for 1000 Books Before Kindergarten

How does it work?

  1. Register
    Get your first reading log from the library
  2. Track Your Reading
    Write down each book you read with your child
  3. Show Us Your Readings Logs
    After each 250 books, get a prize!
  4. Read More Books!
    Receive a free book once you reach 1000!

Can you suggest books?

How can I read 1,000 books?

3 books a day for 1 year = 1,095 books
1 book a day for 3 years = 1,095 books

What books count?

  • Books read at Storytime
  • Books read more than once
  • Books from home, ICPL, and other libraries
  • Books on CD after listening to the whole story
  • Books read by any family member, teacher, etc.
  • Books read on an iPad or eReader

Who's in the 1000 Books Hall of Fame?

Our first inductees are coming soon!


1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is made possible through the generous support of Pearson and the Iowa City Public Library Friends Foundation.