Kindergarten collection starts kids reading early— November 16, 2012
Browsing around on Pinterest the other day, looking for some fabulous recipe I’ll never make or a nail color I’m not brave enough to try, I came across a great reminder about the importance of reading every day. It’s helpful to follow smart librarians on Pinterest, they post all kinds of wonderful book suggestions and lists of books for specific audiences. The posting I came across from a librarian colleague originated on the website of Perry Lecompton Unified School District 343, apparently in Perry, Kansas. The graphic depicts the startling difference in a child’s vocabulary at sixth grade if they read for 20, five or just 1 minute per day. The difference results in a child reading the equivalent of 60 whole school days or 1,800,000 words. The child that reads only five minutes per day will have read for 12 school days and 282,000 words. What a difference!
Surely as parents we can find 20 minutes a day to read with our children to give them this extra boost. I know firsthand it’s tricky between soccer games, dance classes and Boy or Girl Scout meetings, but it’s also the most important thing we can do academically for our children. And it’s one of the reasons the library is so important in our community: to provide children with lots of encouragement and lots of choices in reading material. One of the ways we’ve tried to encourage our children is with our Kindergarten Kickoff program.
Our goal is to ensure every kindergartner in Adams County has a library card and access to the world of books. Each child who signs up for a card or already has one gets a set of two posters each with 100 Picture Books to Read in Kindergarten. (It should say, “…and beyond” because it’s taking my family into first grade to accomplish it all.) These two hundred titles have been organized at the library into our “Kindergarten Collection” and they are our most popular titles in recent months. In fact, with the generosity of the Friends of Hastings Public Library, we’ve just added additional copies of each title to bring this collection up to 1,000 books.
When you choose a book from the Kindergarten collection, you know you’re choosing a book that has been selected as appropriate for family reading time and one that parents and children alike are sure to enjoy. The books are funny, serious, old, new, short and long. Our family favorites so far are Olivia by Ian Falconer, Click, Clack, Moo Cows that Type by Doreen Cronin and Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems. But because of the collection, we’ve also discovered new favorites including Owl Moon by Jane Yolen and Sweet Tooth by Margie Palatini. I hope you’ll make the time to help build your child’s vocabulary and try our Kindergarten collection. There’s a lot of words in the library just waiting for your child to explore!