1000 books before kindergarten logo

Ouachita Parish Public Library is pleased to offer an easy, fun and free program that puts children on the path to success. And yes, you can read 1,000 books. If you read just three books a day, you’ll reach your goal within one year. But even if you read just one book per day, you’ll reach the goal of 1,000 books in three years.

How does it work?
Register your child online here. You can then log every book you read to your child at this website.

What if my child reads the same book over and over again?
If you child is obsessed with Llama Llama, don’t force her to read something different if she’s not ready! Every time you read a book – even if it is the same book – you can log it. For instance, if you read Llama Llama six times in a row to your child, then you can log Llama Llama as six books.

What happens when my child reads 1000 books?
Keep reading! Your child will earn a sticker prize for every 100 books read. Once your child reads 1000 books, he will get to pick out a free book from the library desk.

Why should I register my child for 1000 Books Before Kindergarten?
Reading books to your child, and later your child reading books herself, develops language, social, and behavioral skills.

Do books at Library story times count?
Yes! You can log every book read at story time. For the most up-to-date listing of story times, click here.

1000 books sounds like a lot! I don't think we can accomplish that.
We promise, it’s not as hard as you think! If you read 3 books every day for a year, you will have read 1,095 books. If you read 1 book every day for 3 years, you will have read 1,095 books.

Why is the Library doing this?
We believe it’s never too early to read. Our mission is to advance literacy, inspire lifelong learning, and strengthen our community by serving everyone in Ouachita Parish. That includes our littlest readers. Reading to young children sets them up for success in school and in life.

Where is the parents packet?
You can download the parents packet for 1000 Books Before Kindergarten here.

Workflow: 
Published

These kids have read 1000 books!

A baby sits up with a book open in her lap. There is a sign next to her that says, "I've read 1000 books!"  A boy stands in front of a book shelf and holds a sign that says, "I've read 1000 books!"

Workflow: 
Published

Ouachita Parish's first reader completes the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program

Ouachita Parish's first reader completes the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program

A baby sits up with a book open in her lap. There is a sign next to her that says, "I've read 1000 books!"
Tuesday, September 15, 2020

Emilia McGarey is 13 months old. Her parents Alex and Taylor registered her for the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program at the Library. This school-readiness program builds reading comprehension, behavioral and social skills for little ones. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to bond with your child. Register your little reader here. Below is a Q&A with Emilia’s dad Alex.

How did you accomplish 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten so quickly?

It all started when I signed her up for the program. I brought home a huge tote bag full of books to try with her. We read some to her and her grandmother read to her even more. She liked it and so we continued. She might get the same 10 books read to her around 10 times before they got returned, so it was easy to rack up to 1,000 over the course of 9 months.

What are Emilia’s favorite books?

She seems to really enjoy Llama Llama books, but she is not what I'd call picky when it comes to books. Whether its Elephant and Piggie, Llama Llama, or anything in between, she seems to really enjoy story time, especially with her grandmother who watches her during the day. That said, Emilia does have her books that she doesn't care for as much. Those don't get read as much. There are times where she may bring you a book and want to be read to, so in a general sense, she enjoys it.

Why is reading with Emilia a priority in your family?

We want to make reading a priority with Emilia because her mother and myself are both avid readers. We love books, love reading, and even love to write. We want to pass that on to Emilia as much as we can. I firmly believe that reading is the gateway to imagination and intelligence, and I would love nothing more than for Emilia to have a vast wealth of intelligence and imagination.

What advice do you have to parents who want to read more with their children?

Making time can be hard, I get it. My first tip is to try and make time. If your child brings you a book, read it to them. They'll thank you for it later. My second tip is to enlist help. My mother-in-law watches Emilia during the day and did the majority of reading to Emilia for the challenge. If you have a family member who watches your child, bring them some books to read to the child. It takes a village sometimes and making sure your child is read to is one of those times where it may take more than just you. Thirdly, make sure your child has a relationship with the library. Emilia is still a little young for this, but it is in my plans to make sure that she has a working relationship with the library. Being able to go to story times and programs and check out books to read. Above all, I would say to never neglect reading to your child. Not only is it fun and entertaining, but one day, once they're grown, your child will thank you for the bedtime stories and all the times you gave them the gift of reading.