Storytime Main Reading Room

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

Designed to encourage reading and sharing stories, the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program highlights the benefits of reading to babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. Children who have been read to from a young age begin school with the tools they need for academic success. It is our goal to help prepare all children in the Fargo community to become lifelong readers.

Participation in the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program is easy. Read a book, any book to your child, with the goal of reading 1,000 before kindergarten. By reading just one book a night, families can reach the 1,000-book goal in three years and provide their children essential early literacy skills. Research shows that the most reliable predictor of school success is being read to during early childhood.

Reading to children from an early age can help prepare children to enter Kindergarten with the skills they need to succeed. Most importantly, sharing books with children promotes a lifelong love of books and reading.

How It Works

  • Pick up your child’s tracking log at any Fargo Public Library location – each sheet has room to write in 100 titles. Everyone begins at the 100 level. As you (or other adults) engage in books with your child, record the title on your tracking log. If you read a title more than once, you may write in the title multiple times. We all know how much kids love to hear the same story over and over and that is good; we want to encourage that!
  • When the 100 level sheet is completed, come in with your child to get a sticker and their prize book.
  • After they have picked out their prize book, library staff will give them the next tracking log. This will continue until they have completed all 10 tracking logs equaling 1,000 books.
  • At the completion of 1,000 books, kids will receive a certificate.


  • Children may start any time before they begin Kindergarten – they don’t have to start as babies or toddlers.
  • Children may take until they are 6 years old to complete their 1,000 books.
  • The books they use don’t have to be library books, they can come from anywhere. They can use books that we read at storytime or anywhere else that a child is read to or spends time connecting with a story.
  • If a child who is not reading independently yet occupies their time looking at illustrations or interacting with a book in other ways (for instance, retelling the story to you or telling their own story based on the illustrations) that counts too!
  • They can count books read for the Summer Reading Program, Winter Read-a-Thon program, or any other library sponsored program or event.
  • Even if they don’t get to 1,000 books before Kindergarten, children can still earn prize books. Prizes are given out with every 100 books they engage in.
  • Please note: Participation in the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program is free.