1000 Books Before Kindergarten Owl About the Program
The 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program is a fun, engaging and free program that encourages the love of reading. Children earn rewards by listening to stories. Caregivers learn important tips that can help their child become a successful reader.

Any child, ages birth to five years, who has not started kindergarten can participate. The program is available in English, Spanish and Haitian Creole.

Getting Started
Register - Sign up at any Lee County Library location or online at www.leelibrary.readsquared.com.

Track Your Reading - Use the tracking sheet or log the book you read with your child on READSquared. Tracking sheets can be downloaded at the bottom of this page. You can also pick them up at any library branch.

Every Book Counts - Make sure you log every book, even if you read the same story multiple times. As long as your child listens to the entire book, it counts! 

100-Book Milestones - Each time you read 100 books, visit the library to receive a sticker and new tracking sheet. Rewards must be picked up in person. 

Bonus Activities - Each level includes fun activities that support development. They use one of the five early literacy practices - reading, talking, singing, writing or playing. These do not need to be logged.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does this program cost?

It is free to participate in this program.

Can children older than 5 participate in the program?

This program is designed for children ages birth to 5. Other reading challenges are available throughout the year for school-aged children and teens. Ask your librarian for more information.

What if we participated in the old 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Program?

Yes, you are able to sign up and participate in the redesigned program.

What if I am currently working on the previous version of this program?

We will transition your child over to the new program. They will receive credit for any earned rewards.

Do I need to read specific books to my child?

No. You can read whatever books you think your child will enjoy. We provide reading lists as a courtesy and librarians are always available to suggest titles based on your child’s interests.

Where do I collect my rewards and tracking sheets?

Rewards must be collected in-person at any Lee County Library System location.  It does not matte where you registered or collected your last reward.

Do I need to use READSquared to participate?

No. You can participate completely offline. A staff member will register your child through READSquared. We will log your progress when you collect your rewards and pick up new tracking sheets.

What information is collected when I sign up for READSquared?

The child’s first and last name, age, caregiver’s name and zip code are required to participate. We use READSquared to track overall progress of program attendees and measure the success of the program.

How is my information used?

We do not share participant’s identifying information with anyone. General program information may be shared with library partners.

What if my child does not finish the program before they begin kindergarten?

We will award your child with a completion certificate that shows the number of books they finished.

Is this program available to daycares?

Registration is limited to parents or caregivers and their children. The library can provide information flyers for distribution to caregivers. If you are a daycare provider, please contact your nearest library for more information.

Tracking Progress
Track your reading online at READSquared and/or visit your local branch for tracking sheets, charts and certificates.