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Kindergarten Readiness: Home


Kindergarten readiness begins at birth and as parents, you are your child's first and best teacher!

In this guide, you'll find four main subjects to get your child kindergarten ready: 
ABCs & Vocabulary, School Subjects, Health & Development, and Reading Comprehension. 
Choose any subject to get started!

After choosing a subject, the Home page will take you to a new page of the LibGuide. There, you will find a checklist of skills related to the subject, as well as books and resources to help your child succeed in kindergarten. The skills match what schools look for when they are making sure your child is kindergarten ready.
There will also be some tips for incorporating the five early literacy practices of Every Child Ready to Read (playing, reading, singing, talking, and writing) at home!

Share the learning experience with your kids and have fun getting ready for kindergarten! It's never too early to plant the seed!

What Is Every Child Ready to Read?


Traditionally, early literacy programs at libraries have focused on children. Storytimes and other programs might model strategies that parents can use to develop early literacy skills, but parent education is not typically the primary intent.

The Public Library Association (PLA) and Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) concluded that public libraries could have an even greater impact on early literacy through an approach that focused on educating parents and caregivers. If the primary adults in a child's life can learn more about the importance of early literacy and how to nurture pre-reading skills at home, the effect of library efforts can be multiplied many times.

Teaching parents and other caregivers how to support the early literacy development is the basis of Every Child Ready to Read® @ your library®.

Other Organizations That Support Early Literacy and Development

The following are some of our most trusted organizations that help support early literacy and children's development! If you're looking for more resources, these are some of our recommendations for places to get started.

Connect With Us!

Beanstack App


Download the Beanstack App through the Apple Store or Google Play Store:

How Early Literacy Grows


Early literacy is what children know about communication, language (verbal and nonverbal), reading, and writing before they can actually read and write. It encompasses all of a child’s experiences with conversation, stories (oral and written), books, and print. Early literacy is NOT the teaching of reading - it is laying a strong foundation so that when children are taught to read, they are ready.

The image of the tree reflects: 1. aspects of early literacy, 2. the reading process, and 3. the adult’s role in developing early literacy in children.

1. Oral language is the foundation for all later language. It includes speaking, listening and communication skills. The roots of language development also include non-verbal language, such as body language, facial expressions, and gestures. These developmental components make up the roots of the tree.

2. The five early literacy skills in the leaves and branches have been identified by researchers as fundamental to reading comprehension as children learn to read. If children come to school with a solid background in these skills, it will be easier for them to learn how to read.

3. As the adult, YOU are the sun. YOU make a difference in children’s early literacy development by practicing Every Child Ready to Read®'s five practices with your child every day. As you sing, talk, read, write, and play with young children, you have the opportunity to support their pre-reading skills in little ways that add up to make a difference by the time children enter school.

The Five Early Literacy Practices from Every Child Ready to Read®

The five early literacy practices of Every Child Ready to Read® (playing, reading, singing, talking, and writing) are instrumental in helping teach children the early literacy skills they need to be kindergarten ready. Each time one of these is practiced, the skill your child is learning will be reinforced. Keep practicing with them, and they will be kindergarten ready in no time!


Playing is one of the best ways for children to learn language and early literacy skills. By doing activities that help them put thoughts into words and talking about what they are doing, they are able to create a narrative and associate their vocabulary with their actions. Playing also helps them build social skills through their interactions with others!


Reading together develops vocabulary, comprehension, and a lifelong love for reading. Reading with your child can not only help motivate them to want to learn to read on their own, but it serves as a great activity for caregiver/child bonding! Make a goal to read 15-20 minutes a day.


Singing can help develop language-learning skills and slows down language so children can hear the different sounds in words. Through the repetition and rhyme in music, children can learn new words and comprehend new information. Don't worry about how good you are - your child will love it no matter what!


Talking to/with your child helps them learn oral language skills, one of the most critical! Children learn about language by listening to parents talk AND by joining them in the conversation. Ask your child open-ended questions that start with the 5 W's (who, what, when, where, why) to get them involved in conversations.


Reading and writing go hand in hand. Children learn that the printed letters make up words when they see them in their daily lives. Point out written words on signs and trace them with your child when you can.

Early Literacy Events at the Library

Looking for more programming videos? Check out our YouTube channel here!

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library

At the Waco-McLennan County Library, we are proud to partner with Dolly Parton's Imagination Library!

What is Dolly Parton's Imagination Library?

Dolly Parton's Imagination Library is a program that gifts free books to children from birth to age five. Caregivers simply need to register their child once and each month, a free book will be delivered to the child's home!

Who is currently eligible?

Children under the age of five who live in the following zip codes: 76701, 76704, 76707, 76710, 76711.

How do I sign up?

Stop into any one of our branches to get more information and receive a form today!

1000 Books Before Kindergarten


Simple concept, priceless rewards!

Read books (any books) to your newborn, infant or toddler. (Yes you can re-read books!!)

Use the Beanstack app (below) to record them. For every 100 books, you get a prize!

Read 1000 books before your SUPER READER starts Kindergarten!

That’s only one book every day for three years

ten books a week for two years

twenty books a week for one year!