Officially, kids learn to read in kindergarten. Unofficially, kids start learning how to be readers during their first weeks and months of life. That’s why educators recommend parents read not just to their preschoolers but to their toddlers and babies. The movement for early literacy has a campaign called “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten.”
A number with that many zeroes might sound overwhelming, but the math is reasonable. If you read one book each night, you’d hit 1,000 books in just over three years. Reading three books each night hits the goal in about one year.
Reading is an early indicator of academic success, yet studies estimate that as many as one in five children have difficulties in learning to read. Early experiences and interactions are a key factor in a child’s brain development. If they grow up enjoying stories, it’s easier to get them to read independently when they’re older.
It doesn’t matter if parents are re-reading books. The act of reading — not the constant introduction of new stories — is what’s important.
Parents can sign up for “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten” online or at the library. Keep track of your reading and kids can earn stickers and small prizes as incentives. For more information go to www.hudsonpubliclibrary.org and click on the button that says “Children.”