As a designated Family Place Library, the Long Beach Public Library provides parents and caregivers with a wealth of information on early childhood education and development in our “Parenting Collection” and through our extensive children’s programs.
Long Beach Public Library has an extensive Parenting Book Collection that provides information ranging in topics from parenting a newborn to parenting a teenager. There are parenting books just for mommies or just for daddies …and a special selection of picture books on those hard to find topics such as “going to the hospital” or ” needing glasses”. The Parenting section also provides parents and caregivers with a multitude of free pamphlets and flyers containing helpful early childhood information.
PARENTS ARE A CHILD’S FIRST TEACHER
In addition to giving parents and caregivers essential and accurate parenting information, Long Beach Public Library also provides a variety of library services which stress the importance of a parent or caregiver being a child’s first teacher. The library reaches out to new parents with our “Born to Read” gift bag, welcoming a new baby into the Long Beach Community. Parents with a baby up to 4 months old receive a bag filled with flyers on the importance of reading to babies and general information about the Long Beach Public Library and the Youth Services Department.
A stuffed rattle and a board book are also included in the goodie bag.
Our first program for parents and children begins when the baby is one month old. Wiggles and Giggles Tummy Time is a program designed to encourage parents to get their babies on their tummy to play as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics. Babies who spend a portion of each day on their tummies build strong neck and chest muscles and stay developmentally on track.
At five months old The Mother Goose Rhyme Time Lapsit Program is the perfect environment for parents to bond with their child in a playful setting. With baby seated on the parent’s lap, they learn a variety of songs, finger plays and nursery rhymes from the librarian leading the class. By reading short board books, the librarian models how parents can best share books with young children. The program reinforces the importance of reading and language play for very young babies. This class is for children ages 5 months to 17 months.
AGE APPROPRIATE PROGRAMS FOR CHILDREN AND PARENTS
Children age into a series of programs designed to fit developmental steps and stages leading to preschool and kindergarten readiness. One of the core programs in the early childhood sequence that the Long Beach Public Library offers to parents and caregivers is the Parent/Child Workshop. This program is for children ages 1 to 3 years old. The workshop is an informal program connecting parents and their toddlers with community resource professionals. These resource professionals provide information on different aspects of childhood development (general child development, nutrition, speech and hearing, learning through play, and music with movement). In addition, children enjoy playing with many age appropriate toys and participate in various art experiences. This program effectively supplies important parenting information in a supportive environment that is designed to encourage one-on-one play between the parent and child while also giving the parent ample opportunity to network with other parents in the Long Beach Community.
Library Play Land has been opened to children, ages 1 to 3 1/2, who have completed the Parent/Child Workshop.The children continue to enjoy the toys and activities of the previous program and are also treated to an expanded circle time. Parents continue to network amongst themselves.
Babywise is a program for children ages 1 year 6 months to 2 years 5 months. It is designed to follow the Mother Goose program mentioned above. In this expanded lapsit, an art experience is added and more complicated stories and activities are introduced.
Our next step up for children, ages 2 years 6 months to 3 years 5 months, is the fun filled Toddler Time program. Children and parents are kept busy with all the physical movement activities, various games and puzzles, singing and art experiences, and of course Books!
Separation from parents occurs during our Preschool Storytime for children ages 3 years 6 months to 5 years 5 months (not in kindergarten). This program focuses on reading books, finger plays and songs, and an art experience focused on a chosen theme designed to help prepare your child for a formal school setting.