The First Steps in Lifelong Literacy

Children develop the skills they need to read years before they start school. As a parent or caregiver, you are your child’s first and best teacher. Western Allegheny Community Library can help you get started!

Building Blocks Program

The Building Blocks program at the Western Allegheny Community Library is designed to introduce children to the joys of reading and encourage parents and caregivers to read aloud to their babies every day. The first few years of a child’s life will determine much of what comes after, as the brain development taking place at this time shapes us for the rest of our lives. This is why it is so important, as your baby’s first teacher, to help foster important early literacy skills through the use of books. Reading, talking, playing, and singing are crucial to a child’s growth and development.

Parents can sign up for the program during baby storytime or anytime at the customer service desk by filling out a registration form. Each Building Blocks Pack includes:

  • A baby-friendly board book
  • Activity guide with songs and rhymes
  • List of the Best Books for Babies
  • Reusable bag for books
  • Information on the importance of reading to your child

1,000 Books Before Kindergarten

Take the next steps toward early literacy with the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program. Read a book (any book) to your newborn, infant, toddler, or preschooler. The goal is to read 1,000 books before your little one starts Kindergarten. It may sound intimidating, but if you read one book a night, you will have read 365 books in a year and over 1,000 in three years (and yes, you can do repeats of favorites!). Make sure to log your books, and when you hit your big milestones, your child will get their name on our wall of fame at the library! Ask at the children’s desk to register, and to pick up your reading log and suggested book list.