It offers children a whole world of knowledge, fun, and imagination. Children are never too young to go to the library. Some libraries have even started programs for infants.
Children who go to the library when they’re toddlers become comfortable there. They learn how to find books and information by themselves. The comfort they feel will stay with them throughout their lives. It will help them when they start school and begin doing their own research.
Children also see people of all ages learning and researching at the library. This motivates them to be lifelong learners themselves. Here’s how to make library learning an integral part of your child’s life:
Practice before you go. See if your child can use a soft library voice and handle books with care.
Find good times to visit—times when you won’t be rushed.
Survey the territory first. Look up the closest library in your telephone directory. Call them. Ask for hours and how to become a member.
Give your child her own library bag for carrying books. Let her pick a special one. Or make one together.
Befriend the librarian. Introduce your child. Ask where to find children’s books, magazines, videos and tapes of stories and songs. Ask for her recommendations.
Inquire about other services. Does your library have children’s story hours? Puppet shows? Arts and crafts? Reading programs?
Get your child her own library card as soon as possible. Remember to let her use it.
Make library visits a social experience. Make regular dates with another parent and child.
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