Yonkers Public Library (YPL) buildings have reopened. Learn more about our reopening plan.

1000 Books Before Kindergarten

What is the program? 
“1000 Books Before Kindergarten” is a nationwide program designed to help parents and/or caregivers prepare their children for kindergarten by reading together, preferably every night. 
How does it work? 
Read a book (any book) to your newborn, infant, toddler, and/or preschooler. The program is self-paced and can take a few months to a few years. The goal is to read 1,000 books (and yes, you can repeat books!) before your child begins kindergarten. 

Why should I participate?
To bond with your baby through reading and to promote early literacy. Reading has been identified as an early indicator of academic success with a direct link between how many words a baby hears each day to their language skills. It also builds intimacy and life-long memories between parents/caregivers and a child. 

How long does it take? 
If you read one story at bedtime every night, you will have read 365 books in a year. That is 730 books in two years and 1,095 books in three years. Don’t forget, reading the same book over again counts! 
Will the library help us? 
Yonkers Public Library will be assisting parents and young readers to reach this goal. Upon registration, families will receive an information packet that includes a free book, suggested reading lists and a reading log to help track books.

For every 100 books read the parent and child can come into the library to receive a reward and sticker of achievement.  When the child has read 1,000 books they will receive a special gift, certificate of success and go on the “1000 Books Read Wall of Fame.”

How do I sign up? 
Visit the Children’s Department and sign up anytime; the program is ongoing.


This project is part of the Library’s 125th Anniversary initiative to connect more young families in Yonkers with library resources and to get young children prepared for primary education.  The library’s goal is to sign up 1,000 families by the end of 2019 and to reach 1,000,000 books read by 2023.

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