Early literacy does not mean early reading instruction or teaching babies to read; it is the natural development of skills through the enjoyment of books, the importance of positive interactions between babies and parents, and the critical role of literacy-rich experiences.
Literacy development begins at birth and is closely linked to a baby’s earliest experiences with books and stories. Babies learn language through social literacy experiences – parents interacting with them using books. These experiences also serve to associate books with parental affection, attention, and approval.
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.
How does the 1,000 Books program 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, depending on how often you read together. The goal is to have read 1,000 books (yes, you can repeat books) before your child starts kindergarten.
How do I sign-up?
Register in the children’s room and receive a free Early Literacy folder. Keep track of books on a fun log as you read them, and receive prizes when you reach milestones along the way. (100, 250, 500, 750, 1,000 books.)
1,000 Books Before Kindergarten is made possible through the generous support of the Friends of the Bronxville Public Library.
The Five Practices
Children need a variety of skills in order to become successful readers. To develop pre-reading skills, parents should talk and sing with their children, write or draw with them, read books and magazines with them, and encourage play activities that involve language. These little activities add up to make a big difference by the time they enter school!
TALKING helps children learn language by hearing it spoken. Talking develops vocabulary, print awareness, background knowledge, & letter knowledge.
SINGING slows down language & helps kids hear the smaller sounds in words.
READING to your child is the single most important activity you can do to help your child get ready to read.
WRITING helps children understand that print has meaning. Writing represents spoken word.
PLAY, in addition to being fun, helps a child think symbolically. One item represents another. Dramatic play also encourages storytelling!