500 by 5 Early Literacy Program

The Charles County Public Library is dedicated to doing our part in our community to get every child ready to read. The 500 by Five initiative inspires children to read 500 books by 5 years old.* Reading daily builds a stronger relationship with your child, increases basic speech and communication skills, improves logical thinking, increases vocabulary, enhances concentration and discipline, helps ease transitions to major milestones, promotes school readiness, encourages a love of learning, and it is just plain fun!

*Only children five years of age and under are eligible for participation in this program.

How the program works: 

  1. In order to register for the program, you must sign up on Beanstack here. Logging your child’s books into Beanstack is not mandatory, but if you’d like to keep a digital record of your child’s reading list, this is a great tool to use.
  2. Upon registration, you will then be able to pick up your child’s FREE 500 by 5 starter kit which includes an activity book for tracking books read and a tote bag. Starter kits are available for pickup at any of our branches through Curbside Pickup or at a Mobile Library stop. Visit our Curbside Pickup Information Center to make an appointment, or our Mobile Library page to find the schedule of stops.
  3. Start reading with your child! Every book counts–don’t forget to count the books you read during Story Time, as well!
  4. Track your progress! In the 500 by 5 activity book, color a numbered circle for every book read – even if it’s a book you’re rereading. Once you’ve reached 500 books, head to any CCPL branch* to get the certificate at the back of the activity book signed or stamped by a CCPL employee and your completion reward!  

Reading with young children on a daily basis is a lifetime gift for everyone. Start reading today!

*Please note that while our branches are temporarily closed, you must make a Curbside Pickup appointment or visit one of our Mobile Library stops in order to redeem your 500 by 5 certificate at the completion of the program.

When setting up your Curbside appointment to pick up your starter kit or completion prize, you will either select that you are picking up your Starter Kit (bag & booklet) or your completion prize (after your child has completed the program).

If picking up your registration materials: type “500”, your email address and child’s name in the “Other Important Information?” box below. If you have not yet registered in Beanstack, please register prior to scheduling pick up at www.ccpl.beanstack.org.

If picking up a completion prize: upon arrival at the branch (after your Curbside Pickup appointment has been made), leave your 500 by 5 certificate (located in the back of the activity booklet) at the curbside pick up table. Staff will stamp the certificate at the table and leave your completion prize and/or other materials. Once they have left, you can then retrieve the prize, stamped certificate and other materials.  This is to ensure a contactless pick up process.