Last year, my daughter and I signed up to participate in the library’s early literacy initiative, 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten.
The program, designed to promote reading to newborns, infants, and toddlers, encourages parents to bond with their children through shared reading experiences and provides structure and incentive for reaching the 1,000-book goal.
Over the past nine months, my little one and I have read hundreds of stories, often choosing titles from the lists of recommendations that the children’s librarians offer. She loves to flip pages, chew on covers, and giggle at my dramatic interpretation of “Guess How Much I Love You“. She has her favorites – “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?” and “Goodnight Moon“, and I have mine – “Wherever You Are” and “The Little House“. Every time we read a story, we both learn and grow; as she develops critical literacy skills, I gain more understanding about what makes her eager, curious, and happy.
While our definition of reading will change as my daughter’s ability to associate sounds, recognize letters, and understand vocabulary improves, what will remain constant is the joy we have from the moments we spend together with books. The day I took the pledge to complete the 1,000-book program, I promised to set the foundation for a more fulfilling first-five-years for my child, one that will help to prepare her for a well-read future. I can’t imagine a more worthwhile activity for us both to share.
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