National Take Your Child to the Library Day
This Saturday, February 4th, is National Take Your Child to the Library Day! If libraries haven’t been a part of your child’s world, this is a good day to introduce them to the wonders of the public library. Libraries are an essential part of our community and offer many valuable resources. As if books were not enough, libraries provide access to the internet, educational toys, music, classes, book discussion groups, storytimes, crafts, literacy tutoring, and even more!
I’ve been taking my grandkids to Schusterman-Benson library for over five years, and I’m always amazed at the creative activities the children’s librarian plans. We’ve had family tent nights, pajama story times, and craft activities. My grandchildren have loved the weekly storytimes with Miss Joy at Schusterman. Sylvia is two, and although she got a late start at the library due to the pandemic, she now knows the routine and looks forward to it. Callister is in kindergarten now but still enjoys going to the library on the weekends. I love that they both view the library as a happy place. They know the librarians well enough to feel comfortable asking questions and are familiar enough with the library that it feels like a part of their regular routine.
Tulsa City-County libraries are offering a variety of activities for National Take Your Child to the Library Day. Check out their site to see what’s going on. Why should you take your child or grandchild to the library? Every day is a good day to take your child to the library, and here are the five reasons we will be going Saturday.
1. Your child should associate good times with books and reading.
Many of the libraries will be offering special activities to celebrate the day. Our favorite library, Schusterman-Benson, will have an animal educator from the Tulsa Zoo as a guest. The animal educator will teach the kids about animal habitats in the rainforests and deserts. They’ll even be bringing an animal ambassador! How much fun is that?!
2. Your child can get their own library card as long as they live in Tulsa County.
It’s free for your child to have their very own library card. Having their own card is a feeling of empowerment and being part of the community of readers. They will learn the importance of reading and understand the responsibility of caring for books they borrow.
3. Stock up on books for the cold winter days still ahead of us!
We’ve had a few inside days lately, and I can’t imagine getting through those “no school” days without a stack of books for the kids. You can check out 75 books at a time!
4. Read to your kids every day for 15-20 minutes, and they will start kindergarten knowing more words.
Even reading one book a day makes a difference. A child who reads one book a day will hear 290,000 more words by the time they are five years old than kids who are not read to! A child who has been read to regularly will be much better prepared to learn reading skills when they begin school. It’s never too early to start incorporating books into their lives.
5. It’s fun, and it’s free!
I’ve been to most of Tulsa’s regional and branch libraries and am always impressed with the bright, happy, and stimulating children’s areas. I will never get over the astonishment (and gratitude) that the library offers us so many experiences for free! Plus, they trust me to check out books with no credit check or collateral! What a bargain!