About Us

Techless and books aplenty 

TOT4TOT

TOT4TOT was created after I was contacted by parents, educators and librarians throughout the State of New Jersey asking me to start a chapter of First Library® (firstlibrary.org), the free educational toy and clothing program I founded, after my interview about First Library and Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library (imaginationlibrary.com) appeared on the cover and inside about half of the issues of a New Jersey magazine, My Life Publications.


They liked my mission of encouraging daily reading and required monthly library visits for the families of preschoolers (many in need) and wanted me to expand the program into their community.


And the importance of children being prepared to learn before they start school.


I wanted to expand the program throughout the State of New Jersey but I didn’t have the staff or resources to do so.


I had recently read an article by the Journal of the American Medical Association  (their Pediatric edition) espousing the superiority of paper books over tablets.


 And I remembered hearing a report by the nonprofit organization Common Sense Media about how young children were spending over two hours a day on mobile screens (tablets, cell phones, etc.).


I began thinking there must be a way to combat the overuse of mobile screens by young children and help make daily reading and monthly library visits a part of child’s everyday life.


As a young mother I curbed the overuse of technology for my four children by turning it off for two hours a day.


Being the parent of four children with a fourteen year age span, I knew the importance of early reading on a consistent basis.


Reading was a top priority in my children’s lives through my words and actions.


Whether it was reading to them daily, scheduling independent reading time, taking weekly excursions to the local library or making trips to book stores; reading was a major part of my children's lives growing up. But I still needed to make sure there was time for it.


By setting aside two hours a day, starting originally once a week on a weekday, like Tuesday, I knew there would be time for books and more.


My children could play, read or do homework, anything, but NO VIDEO GAMES, TELEVISION, COMPUTERS, ETC.


Today, they are voracious readers with extensive home libraries because of the actions and activities I implemented when they were young.


I thought if parents could pledge funds to Turn Off Tech 4 Two hours On Tuesdays, like I did for my family, they could not only help area children, but help their children form good healthy habits AND develop a lifetime love of reading.


I shared my idea with my family and friends.


They planned fundraisers to bring the First Library program to their community through my “turn off tech 4 two hours” platform. 

SCHOOLS & NONPROFITS

Others wanted to volunteer their time to fundraise and open new chapters of program in their town.


They had vast knowledge of the local community, businesses, and schools, but couldn’t commit because they needed a source of income.


At the same time I was researching the impact budget cuts were having on local schools and other educational institutions.


I created TOT4TOT to solve both problems.


TOT4TOT gives schools and small nonprofits with limited staff the opportunity to fundraise for their institutions and help open new of free reading programs like First Library while allowing “volunteers” aka Local Community Representative to work for a cause they feel passionately about.


And we enable other schools and other educational nonprofits the ability to fulfill their mission without incurring the additional employee costs PLUS we offer employment opportunities to local community members.

FIRST LIBRARY®

I founded First Library to give my love of reading to children, one book at a time.


First Library (firstlibrary.org) promotes early childhood literacy and library patronage.


Our vision, at First Library, is to not only give every child a foundation for a lifetime love of reading and library patronage, but to actively engage their mothers in the process.


Children, newborn to age five, in the original program, received one free book monthly regardless of their gender, race or family income.


Their parents were asked to read to them daily and were encouraged to visit their local library monthly.

FIRST LIBRARY® AND MORE FIRST LIBRARY®

First Library refocused its efforts and now offers two new similar but unique programs, First Library and More First Library, that are tailored by a mother's wants and needs.


First Library® now gives new educational toys and supplies to single first time mothers of children, new born to age one, quarterly. 

Mothers are asked to read to their child daily & are required to visit their local library monthly.


More First Library®, a program for first time mothers, the majority in need, offers single first time mothers their choice of new educational toys, supplies and children's clothing, quarterly, with daily reading, monthly library visits and various free reading related activities. Mothers are also enrolled in a social service program for participation in the More First Library. 


A third program, Most First Library, exclusively for first time mothers at risk, was offered until March of 2020. 

Please join me and my family and turn off tech for two hours starting on Tuesdays and help give educational toys and clothing to preschool children in your community. And raise funds for your participating school!


Catherine Tinger Goldberg

PS I recently put my TOT4TOT idea into practice after I received a serious concussion during an automobile accident.


The doctors instructed me that in order for my brain to heal from the trauma I needed to turn off all technology, all mobile screens and television, for two a day (minimum).


I am happy to say I rediscovered many of the habits I had cultivated with my children (patience, listening, reading and writing) with my visiting grandchildren.


And the results were spectacular.


Happy grandchildren and happy grandma!


Catherine 


Thank  you to the following professionals and companies for donating goods and services.


Michael M. Goldberg, Attorney-at-Law, Providence, RI.

J. Anthony Manger, Attorney-at-Law, Mountain Lakes, NJ.

Michael F Vernoia, Jr., CPA, VEBCPA, Somerville, NJ.

Charles J. Meyer, Attorney-at-Law, Indianapolis, IN.

James Howard, CEO, Entrepreneurial U. LLC., Morristown, NJ.

Thomas Hubbard, SCORE, Charlottesville, VA.

LJ Frank, Library Director (retired), Knox County Public Library, Knoxville, TN.

Mara Tettlebaum Goldberg, CPA, Hoboken, NJ.

Loantaka, LLC, Commercial Real Estate, Chatham, NJ.