The Hays Public Library will hold a launch party on November 9 to kick off a new program to encourage parents and caregivers to read with children. The 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten initiative is a free reading challenge aimed at growing children’s literacy skills.
“Many children experience difficulty learning how to read. Those who are not proficient readers will have difficulty during their school years and beyond,” said Early Literacy Librarian Sara Schoenthaler. “The ability to read is THE gateway skill to learning and accessing the world. Those children who are read to and exposed to books consistently and from a young age are better prepared to read and succeed.
Parents and caregivers are the first and best teachers of their 0-5 year olds.”
Studies have shown that reading with a child provides a great opportunity for bonding. Reading together is fun and will create life-long memories for both the child and parent. Experts agree that children who learn the necessary skills early do better in school and later in life.
Participating in 1000 Books Before Kindergarten can help put children on the right track.
The Hays Public Library will provide logs to track the number of books read. Each time 100 books are read, a child gets a sticker from the children’s service desk. After completing 500 and 1000 books, a child will get to choose a free book to keep. As much fun as it is to read new stories, families are encouraged to count every time they reread a favorite book. The goal is not to read 1,000 NEW books but to read with their child 1,000 times, no matter if it is the same book over and over again.
Each November the library will host a “graduation” party for anyone that completed the program in the previous 12 months.
A launch party will be held at the library November 9 at 11:30 a.m. This event also will serve as the kickoff of Kansas Reads to Preschoolers Week.
You can find out more about this and other library programs at hayslibrary.org or by calling 785-625-9014.