Impact on Reading and Literacy

Two conditions found essential for creating a reader

Two conditions found essential for creating a reader are (1) an early environment that offers literary experience, that is, a print-filled environment (books, magazines, newspapers, etc.), and adults reading these materials, and (2) a caring adult to introduce the child to literary pleasure. The public library meets both requirements

Librarians Can Help Parents and Caregivers

Librarians can help parents and caregivers by making available quality books on parenting and appropriate children’s literature, such as lullaby and song books, Mother Goose rhymes, and books showing objects, patterns, and other stimuli. Librarians can also encourage parents and caregivers to talk, sing, and read to their infants.

Public library programs offer wonderful opportunities for promoting school-readiness skills in children

Public library programs offer wonderful opportunities for promoting school-readiness skills in children and creating positive associations with books while showing parents how important these skills are and how to reinforce them at home.

Parents are given books to read aloud to their children

In family programs at some public libraries, parents are given books to read aloud to their children during the actual sessions. Peer pressure and gentle librarian encouragement inspires them to share the book with their child, even if it is not something that they routinely do at home. However, the hope is that after doing it week after week at the public library, they will grow accustomed to book-sharing behavior and begin reading aloud to their child at home also. Some libraries allow the parents to keep the books, increasing the likelihood that they will continue reading aloud to their child at home.

Children should be ready for school and public libraries may play a vital role in this process

The [author’s] study took place in a Midwestern county with a population of approximately 120.000… Poverty level of the county was 12% and this level even goes higher for under the age of 18 year old children, 14.1%. Approximately 15.000 children were enrolled in K-12 schools in 1999. 30% of these children were eligible for free or reduced fee lunch program (CAPE,2007). These data show that, at-risk children’s number is high enough not to be ignored. These children should be ready for school and public libraries may play a vital role in this process.