Librarian Claire Kandle said Jim Gill, the director at DPL, became aware of the program and suggested they learn more to see if it was something the library could do at a local level. They along with hundreds of other libraries in nearly every state along with Canadian libraries have implemented the program.
Numerous studies have shown the benefits of reading to children even when they are infants. They learn to associate books to the warmth and comfort of a parent or caregiver.
Children who are read to at a very young age have greater vocabulary and writing skills, exhibit healthy social and emotional development, and have longer attention spans. Reading to young children promotes better retention of information once they enter school and promotes enhanced imaginative and critical thinking skills.
The program is simple. Parents or caregivers can sign up at the library, where they will receive a welcome packet that will allow them to keep track of books read to their children from birth to age 5. The packet also includes practical tips about reading to your children depending on their age. There are two apps available to help track books as well using your Android or iPhone smart phone.
Sign-up also is available online at the library’s website at www.doverlibrary.org, where the same materials can be printed.
For each 100 books read, the milestone can be celebrated by having a photo taken at the library in the story room.
“Reading to your children develops such a wonderful bond,” Kandle said. “To me it is the major point of it. The program has no downsides whatsoever.”
Every book counts, whether you read to them or they hear a story at the library, day care or preschool. Even if they want to hear the same book over and over again, a common request from youngsters, it can still be counted as one book each time.
“Reading to my kids at bedtime is my favorite part of the day,” Kandle said. “It’s something we do every day together.”
When you reach the 1,000-book milestone, your child’s name will be placed on the 1,000 Book Wall of Fame, and he or she will receive a prize.
For more information about the program, call the library at 330-343-6123.
The Dover Public Library is located at 525 Walnut St. in Dover.
Published: February 16, 2017