POMEROY — Instilling a love of reading in some of the county’s youngest residents, as well as preparing them for kindergarten are just some of the reasons for the newest program at the Meigs County District Public Library.
“1,000 Books Before Kindergarten” is the new reading program geared toward children age birth to pre-kindergarten at the library.
The reading program is designed to help parents encourage their children to develop a love of reading, stimulate early brain function, and prepare children for kindergarten.
Children’s Librarian Anna Wears explained that a few months back library Assistant Director Chelsea Poole mentioned the program to her as reading is a big part of Wears and her family’s life. Wears said she thought it was a great idea.
The 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten program is conducted at libraries across the country.
“We have been reading with my kids since birth. We read everyday,” said Wears.
“Reading has made such a huge impact on our family, I want other families to experience that as well,” said Wears.
Library Children’s Services Coordinator Emily Sanders explained that participants (and their parent/guardian) are given a folder with information about the program, as well as book recommendations from Wears, Sanders and other library staff. A book log is also included in the folder for parents to keep track of the books they read with their young children, and list some of their favorites.
Sanders said that each time a participant completes a log sheet (100 books) they will take their photo moving up in the “hot air balloon” to mark their progress as “rising little readers.” A yearly celebration will be planned for readers who hit the 1,000 book mark during that year.
Wears said they have been easing in to the program, presenting the information to parents at one of the August “Wiggle Giggle Read” programs before the school year began.
According to the 1,000 Books Before Kindergarten Program information, reading aloud to a child builds vocabulary, creates a family bonding experience, develops listening skills and imagination, promotes longer attention spans and improves cognitive development and academic performance.
Sanders said that the 1,000 books read do not have to be 1,000 different books as children and families often develop favorites which they read over and over. Participants can read at their own pace, meaning they can reach the 1,000 books as quickly or slowly as they wish.
Children age birth to preschool age can participate in the program by registering at the Pomeroy Library.
The Wiggle Giggle Read program is held weekly at 10:30 a.m. on Thursday at the Pomeroy Library. Additional story times are held at the library locations throughout the week. A complete list of times can be found on the library website.
For more information visit meigslibrary.org or call the Pomeroy Library at 740-992-5813.
Sarah Hawley is the managing editor of The Daily Sentinel.