Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Wide Open Library Doors in Utah County

Wake up.
Cheerios soon cover the floor.
Puzzle pieces add to the spread.
Load up in the van for a mad dash to the store for diapers.
Ham and cheese sandwich for lunch.
Flip through the same pages you did yesterday, and the day before that.
Finally he is napping and you attempt the marathon of your to-do list.
Fold laundry "together."
Dinner quickly comes and goes.
The family game night quickly turns to wreckage.
Bathes, bubbles and down for bed.

Repeat.

No one will argue that parenting is the most important work that a parent can do but the day-to-day parts of parenting can easily become mundane and repetitious. 
If there was just something that allowed you and yours to get out of the house every now and again to do something new that you both enjoyed with real people who eat ham and cheese sandwiches as often as you do!

   Utah has done just that. Local libraries all over Utah allocate large sums of funding, volunteers and hours to provide children and their families with activities that encourage early literacy, social skills, community interaction, parent-child relationships, and creativity. These resources are available to any parent who simply walks through their local library doors.
   In the Utah County area alone there are more than 15 city libraries, each with their own children's programs. A simple internet search can connect parents with a long list of activities for their children to attend on nearly any given day day of the week! 
   This month at the local Provo library just around the corner from our United Way office there are endless engaging children's activities just waiting to be attended! Those activities will be listed here but if you live somewhere outside of the Provo area don't hesitate to find your local library by following this link & searching with your ZIP code. 

Photo Credit
At the Provo City Library each week their Kid's Program hosts:
  • Book Babies. Every Friday at 10:00 am for children ages 0-12 months. This hour has age-appropriate stories, songs and finger-plays for babies and their caregivers.
  • Spanish Story Time. Every Monday at 6:30 pm & Friday at 10:30 am. Music, stories and crafts for Spanish speaking children and their caregivers.
  • Early Literacy Parent & Child Workshops. Every Monday at 10:00 am for children ages 2-3 years. This hour has hands-on activities that encourage literacy and reading readiness. Pre-registration is necessary, and can be completed here.
  • Library Kids Jr. & Sr. Every Thursday from 4:15 pm-5:00 pm for children ages 5-8 years (Library Kids Jr.) and 8-12 years (Library Kids Sr.). Exciting book and literacy based crafts and activities, pre-register your child for Library Kids Jr. here and for Library Kids Sr. here
  • Toddler Time. Every Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday at 10:15 am and Friday at 11:15 am. For children ages 1-2 years old and their caregivers with lots of fun through story time, songs and finger play.
  • Preschool Time. Every Tuesday, Wednesday & Thursday at 10:00 am and 11:00 am for children ages 3-5 years old and able to separate from their caregivers. Prepares children for school readiness through social interactions with stories, finger plays and songs.
Photo Credit
As well as these weekly activities there are also regular monthly activities:
  • Mother-Daughter Book Club on the last Tuesday of each month at 7:00 pm for girls ages 9-12 years old and their mothers. At this event, discussion of an assigned popular chapter book is followed by a craft and light refreshment. If interested, pre-register here.
  • Mother-Son Book Cub on the last Wednesday of the month at 7:00 pm for boys ages 9-12 years old and their mothers. At this event, discussion of an assigned popular chapter book is followed by a craft and light refreshment. If interested, pre-register here.
  • On the firt Saturday of each month there is Special Needs Story Time for children ages 5-8 years old who have special needs. Story and presentation cater to the needs of children with autism who respond best to low sound and soft light. Pre-register by calling the Children's Desk at (801) 852-6682. 
This list of events is just the beginning, there are also a myriad of teen and adults events hosted each month! To stay up-to-date on all of these events, follow this events calendar.

So many in our community do so much to try to ease the parent's heavy load of caring for and teaching their children. The local libraries here in Utah County are some of those places and are waiting with open doors for the community's families to walk in and learn together.

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