Libraries Transform: Because Early Literacy Begins at the Library

People sometimes wonder why the library has things that aren't books. In our Youth Services Department we have a train table, blocks, puzzles, a puppet theater and dress up store.

According to an article published by the Association for Library Services to Children, "Children's first attempts to read and write frequently occur during play. Studies of early readers reveal that these children have engaged often in dramatic open-ended play." Also known as "pre-literacy activities," these imagination stations encourage:

  • Use of fine and large motor skills
  • Development of hand to eye coordination
  • Gains in visual/spatial understanding
  • Stimulation of imagination and creativity

In fulfilling the Library’s mission to Educate, Empower, Engage, Enlighten and Excite we offer more than just the opportunity to take a book off the shelf and leave. Encouraging families to be involved in their children’s earliest literacy development is so important to future educational success. "Play encourages healthy brain development while fostering exploration skills, language skills, social skills physical skills and creativity."

So while you might not necessarily associate "play" with library, it really is the first step on the road to literacy.