Thursday, June 11, 2009

Thrifty Thursday ~ The Library

There's nothing more thrifty than FREE and your local library is exactly that! Here are a few ways to take advantage of this amazing resource:
  • Call to see about the FREE events for Kids & Families. My library has story times for all ages, book fairs, puppetry, interactive shows, craft times, etc. We go at least once a week.
  • Join the Summer Vacation Reading Program. Pick up the reading record and keep track of the minutes you read or were read to. Once you've complete the record you turn it in for great prizes. I put my 4 and 2 year old boys at the kitchen table (so they can't move around) and set a timer for 10 minutes (for a clear goal). I start by reading one book and then I leave the table while they have quiet time and "read" books. I end the short session by reading another book. We do this in the morning and afternoon. Then, we read to each boy individually for 10 minutes before bed.
  • Check out books! The annotated list of books from Honey For a Child's Heart is a wonderful starting point. Sometimes I focus on a topic in which my boys are interested (trains, birds) or something I'm trying to teach (manners, letters, holidays). My favorite tool is using the library's online service to reserve books so they are ready to pick up when I arrive. Instead of searching for books while we're there I can focus on teaching my boys the rules of the library, doing computer time, and snuggling up to read a book.
  • Bring the fun home! I try to make books come alive by adding activities to them. First, we read the book at the table to introduce the concept and avoid distraction. Then, we go to the supplies (which I've set up ahead of time) and I read the book again as we do the activity. One fun example is Warthogs Paint: A Messy Color Book by Pamela Duncan Edwards. This book teaches about primary colors and how mixing them will create new colors. We had a blast painting and I enjoyed watching his eyes light up as he mixed red and yellow to make orange! We've also used Grandpa Takes Me to The Moon by Timothy R. Gaffney. This is about space exploration and we used our toy spaceship to reenact the trip to the moon. The opportunities are endless!


HPS said...

Adorable! These are great tips and ideas. Thank you!

BrooklynShoeBabe said...

As a public children's librarian, I applaud this post! :-) Libraries are great sources for programs--children's and adults. We also have great books on how to make stories and books come alive with activities.

Karen said...

We love the library. We haven't been in awhile due to busy schedules, but we need to go back soon. The storytimes for toddlers are fantastic!