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December 2008 Archive

Family Place at Santa Cruz Public Libraries

SCPL Kids' Page

What do you mean by a Family Place Library? Haven't Santa Cruz Public Libraries always been places for families?

Of course, SCPL has always welcomed families; but it hasn't always been easy for people with very small children to make the most of library visits. Toddlers get bored and whine, babies crawl under shelves, and the adult who's trying to keep everyone happy often ends up hustling everyone out before she has a chance to look up information or select a book or DVD for herself.

Family Place libraries are designed to be comfortable for young children and their adults. Soft toys, bright rugs, inviting seating, and plenty of books for the very young may not sound all that different from the children's room of the past, but they are put together and used deliberately to encourage families to visit their library. Come in, play, and stay a while, Family Place libraries say. A child's work is play, and a child's tools are toys.

Is every branch of SCPL a Family Place?

Yes. Every branch will have its own Family Place area, adapted to its own character and physical constraints. Look for bright rugs, toys, and board books set out on low shelves. And look for the Parent-Child Workshop series that's the heart of Family Place.

What is the Parent-Child Workshop series?

Once a week for five weeks, families (adults and young children) will meet to play (children's work, remember!) and learn from experts on various childhood issues: speech, nutrition, physical development, reading. These aren't lectures; the experts will be on tap while families are Together @ the Library. You can chat with them informally, while bouncing an infant or tossing a soft toy back and forth with your toddler. Some of your most useful conversations may take place while you're rolling around on an alphabet rug or helping kids squeeze through a "caterpillar" tunnel.

Early Literacy
on Dec. 15, 2008 at 2:44 p.m.