By Margaret Chatfield
There are so many wonderful reasons to bring your child to the library for story time, the obvious being it is just plain fun. It is a great bonding experience for you and your child and you can see all that is new when you visit the library weekly. Story time is a great opportunity to share in the joy and importance of reading with your child. Our story times are free of charge and you do not need to register, just drop in.
Experts in the field of early literacy have indicated that reading out loud to your child helps them to develop reading skills before they are able to read. Story time helps to develop the six primary early literacy skills your child needs to have in place before they can learn to read.
Our Middlefield library story time experts are trained to focus on these six skills during story time in the most enjoyable way.
The first skill is Print Motivation. Your child will discover that books are a source of pleasure and enjoyment. Books are fun and the stories are delightful.
Next, here s Phonological Awareness, which is the ability to hear and manipulate the smaller sounds in words (rhyming, syllables, and starting sounds.) In story time your child will hear lots of fun rhymes and sound out simple sounds. Sometimes is sounds like a barn yard in the story time room!
Vocabulary quite simply this means knowing the names of things! The more words your child hears the bigger their vocabulary will grow. Learning to read will be easier because they can make sense of the words they are sounding out. Picture books are packed with new vocabulary words for your child to learn.
Narrative Skills This is the ability to describe events. In story time we often ask, what do you think will happen next? Your child can learn to describe the events in the story and gain a better command of language.
Print Awareness – the printed word is everywhere. Your child will learn that words in the picture books have meaning, they are fun and enjoyable. It is a good idea for you to label simple objects around the house, like “chair” “table” etc., to further the idea that words have meaning!
The last of the six skills is Letter Knowledge – knowing that letters are different from each other. They have different names and sounds. Our story times follow a letter of the week, the selected stories also follow the highlighted letter. Singing the ABC song is a great way to learn this skill.
Our story times at the Middlefield library, beginning June 4 are:
Toddler story time Tuesdays at 10 a.m. or Thursday at 11 a.m.; preschool story time Wednesday or Thursday at 10 a.m.; family story time Tuesdays at 11 a.m. Visit the library for story time and get ready for lots of learning fun! The Middlefield Library is located at 16167 East High St, (44062). Call 440-632-1961.