1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

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Kent County Public Library invites families and caregivers to help their kids become strong readers by reading 1,000 books together before they enter kindergarten.

Reading aloud to young children starting when they’re born helps create strong language skills and grow their vocabulary – two very important tools for learning how to read.

How to Participate

Online: Use Beanstack to sign up and track the number of books you read.

In-Person: Visit any KCPL location to register, and pick up a printed reading log to track the number of books you read.

Start Reading

Find books at the library, explore ebooks and audiobooks in KCPL’s Digital Library, listen to stories at storytime, or read books you already have at home.

If you’d like help finding something to read, we are happy to recommend books – just tell us what interests your child has or what books they already love and we’ll give you personalized suggestions.

Ways to Read
Borrow Library Books

Use your library card to check out board books, picture books and more from the library.

Your library card also lets you borrow ebooks from our Digital Library! Some ebooks you can read online and others you can download to a smart phone or tablet. If you need help getting started, please let us know.

If you don’t have a library card yet, you can apply online or in-person at any KCPL location. Please be sure to bring photo ID and proof of address when applying in-person or, if you apply online, the first time you use your new card.

Click here to view our selection of new Easy books for your young new readers!


Come to storytime at the library and let us read to you! We have weekly storytime programs for kids ages 0-5. Please visit our calendar of events for more details.

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Kent Family Center logo

Imagination Library

Sign up for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and build your own home library for free! This program is dedicated to inspire young children with a love of reading. Children ages 0-5 are eligible to sign up and will receive a free book in the mail every month until their 5th birthday.

Register online, print and mail a paper registration form, or contact the Kent Family Center at 410-810-3790 for more information.

Tips For Reading Aloud

Have Fun.
Use different voices, add movement, explore facial expressions, and include props to bring stories to life.

Stay Flexible.
It’s okay to skip parts of a book, read it backwards, only look at the pictures, or not finish a story that isn’t working well for you. You can read aloud to your child even when they are playing with toys or moving around.

Be Prepared.
Have books close by so you’re always ready to read. Keep them in different rooms, put them in your vehicle, and take them on walks. Even a few minutes of reading at a time can bring the joy of reading to your child.

Snuggle Up.
Hold your child while you read and incorporate their favorite toys or comfort items. Reading can be a calming sensory experience for your child and give them feelings of safety and love.

Talk About It.
Point out things in the story that you find interesting. Ask your child questions about the pictures and talk about how they relate to familiar things in your child’s life or home.

Repeat Favorites.
Children love to hear their favorite stories over and over. Repetition is important for developing reading skills, so re-reading a book is a great choice.

Make It A Habit.
Make reading part of your daily routine! Find a time and place that works for you and your child, then show up to read together every day.


The 1,000 Books Frequently Asked Questions page might have your answer.

If you need more information, stop by any KCPL location or call 410-778-3636.