Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

StoryTown

An example of partnership as a librarian does storytime outreach

At Simsbury Public Library, CT we’re good at collaboration. We have an excellent record of building strong partnerships with local businesses, community organizations, schools, and other town departments. In fact, one of our strategic plan goals revolves around outreach, engaging the community beyond the library’s walls and increasing our number of off site library programs. We already have regularly scheduled outreach visits to daycares, pre-schools and schools in our area, and were looking for a new way to engage our youngest patrons, out in the community. StoryTown is a fall series of storytimes around Simsbury, CT designed to do just that.  It is an ideal way for patrons to meet us in different locations around town and learn a little more about our community in the process. Each of the six StoryTown programs will take place at a different location including: Peachwave (a local business, and sponsor of our Summer…

Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

Making the Most of the Resource Fair

Libraries have been working hard to provide the best services to young children and families. We offer amazing early literacy based storytimes and programming. We have fantastic board and picture book collections. Maybe we offer play spaces or even circulate toys. Some of us are providing special programming for caregivers and training for early childhood providers. We’re getting out and partnering with schools and organizations. Now, how do we let our communities know about all of these amazing services? One excellent opportunity is the community resource fair. Resource fairs can take many forms. They may be for families or educators, might be all non-profits or include vendors from businesses, they may focus on specific age groups, they can be information based or as part of a larger recreational program. Whatever the format, a resource fair is an opportunity to showcase the services your library offers families. If you are new…

Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

Storytime Summit Fun

Storytimes are perhaps the most beloved component of library services to families with young children. As a result, finding fun and effective ways to support the librarians who provide these engaging services is crucial. These beliefs provided the foundation for our development of Salt Lake County Library Systems’ full day training called the Storytime Summit, held in August of 2017. 

Diversity

Talking with Young Children (0-5) about Race

As youth serving librarians, we have a unique opportunity to build relationships and interact with young children and their families. This opportunity allows us to support families in many ways: building literacy skills, learning the importance of play, enjoying library programs, and of course much more.  Among the “much more” is the opportunity to speak with young children about race, to speak with caregivers about how to talk about race, and to model talking about race with children for their caregivers. It’s Never Too Early to Talk with Children about Race Research indicates both that children notice racial differences from a very young age (Winkler, 2009) and that if caregivers do not openly talk about race with children, children make up their own, often erroneous, meaning from what they see (Bigler, as cited in Dwyer, 2013). But, many caregivers/librarians/teachers, particularly white folks, are uncomfortable talking about race. They may feel…

Early Literacy

Songs by Librarians for Librarians

In January 2018, the New York Public Library (NYPL) released their first-ever album of original children’s music, NYPL Sings! Former NYPL children’s librarian Emily Elizabeth Lazio wanted to showcase the multifaceted talents of NYPL staff who, in addition to making books and learning come alive for our young patrons and their families every day, wrote and performed all the songs on this album. The album was made possible through the NYPL Innovation Project, generously supported by the Charles H. Revson Foundation, which supports Library staff for creative, unique ideas that improve programs, services and processes at NYPL. The early literacy team and education department at NYPL served as project managers, and over forty past and present staff members lent their songwriting, instrumental, vocal, and performance skills! Each song on the album represents a different way for caregivers to prepare their children for a lifetime of learning.  NYPL focuses on singing…

Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

The Results Are In! Summary of the Fall ECPS Committee Survey

Remember waaay back in September when we asked you to take this short survey for us? Well about 680 of you did! (Thank you.) We think your answers are pretty interesting, we’d like to share a brief overview of the results with you. One of the main questions we asked, was “What areas of Early Childhood are you most interested in learning about?” The top choices included: Early Childhood Programs and Tips (71%), Partnering with Community Groups and Early Childhood Programs (60%), and Childhood Development (50%). We also inquired about how you learn best and what formats work well for you. You overwhelmingly responded that webinars are helpful and convenient, as 83% of respondents voted for this format. Many of you also still appreciate the benefits of in person training, which came in second place with 63% of the vote. Finally, we asked for more specific feedback on topics. We…

Blogger Early Childhood Programs and Services committee

Professional Development for Early Childhood Care Providers

As youth librarians for the very young, we know that our audience isn’t just the children in our communities, but also their families. We also know that there is another important caregiver audience out there, the early childhood care provider. A very broad term, early childhood care providers may work in public or private preschools, Head Starts, day care centers, places of worship, businesses or private homes. They may have varying levels of education and experience but they all work hard to give the children in their care quality experiences. Youth librarians are in wonderful positions to support them with books and resources but in some cases can also provide more formal professional development on topics such as early literacy and using picture books in classrooms. If your library is interested in providing formal professional development for early childhood care providers, here are some tips. Learn about local and state…

Early Literacy

Updating your Early Literacy Space — for all sizes and budgets!

A well loved early literacy space is the ideal sign of your library meeting the needs of your community’s youngest learners; however, with great love, often comes broken toys, missing blocks and dirty rugs. No matter how big or small your early literacy space is at your library, it is important to keep the space warm, welcoming and engaging for both children and their grownups, which is often easier said than done. How do you constantly keep your space inviting and up-to-date when your budget may not keep up with your community needs?