Blogger Sarah Bean Thompson

Messy Art and Creative Movement

This Fall, my staff and I got very excited about offering something new in addition to our regular weekly storytimes. We wanted to shake things up a bit in our schedule. Luckily I have staff members who are especially excited and inspired by change and trying new things. I wanted to offer a regular music and movement program ( more than my once a quarter dance party) and I had a staff member who wants to do an art program. So after brainstorming and scheduling we created Toddler Art (ages 18 months-36 months) and Preschool Wiggleworms (ages 3-6) to host on Friday mornings.

I was a bit worried about how changing our schedule and taking out Friday storytimes for something else would effect the rest of our programs. Would our other storytimes have a huge jump in attendance? Would we just end up with repeats from earlier in the week? So far, our storytime numbers haven’t had much change and while we do see some families come back for our Friday sessions, we’ve notice a whole new crowd coming into the library. Families are coming to the art program and exploring art activities with a space to get messy. Our preschoolers are loving the chance to do more creative movement, parachute play, instruments and rhythm sticks. We’re bringing kids and families in who haven’t attended a storytime and are discovering all the awesome things we do at the library. Plus, we’re offering this sessions for free where other similar music and art sessions have a fee.

We’ve been running the programs foe a month and have heard numerous comments from patrons thanking us for the programs, providing an opportunity to introduce the arts to kids, and for having a fun, creative family experience. I’m looking into our Spring and Summer schedule and thinking so it how to offer these programs in the evenings or weekends to accommodate working families. I love being able to offer a place for kids to explore art and music and adding these new programs has been a great scheduling change!

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