This is the phrase you are hearing a lot at ICPL recently. The Children’s Room has a new display that emphasizes the importance of play in early learning, but this is a philosophy the Library has supported for the many (30+) years that I have worked here. I think Hazel Westgate was the first Children’s Librarian to provide toys and activities to engage ICPL’s youngest patrons while parents or caregivers selected books.
Since that time the Children’s Room has gone through many transformations and many, many well-used and loved toys. I couldn’t resist snapping a photo of the new playhouse we recently acquired.
New toys are fun for us all! Opportunity for play in the Children’s Room encourages language development and socialization skills. Our staff often share with each other the cute conversations we overhear throughout the day.
Of course providing play opportunities for children requires a constant effort to keep those items safe, clean and attractive. During our most recent remodeling of the children’s area we were able to acquire two sturdy play tables. One is used for train play and the other for Duplo block construction, and they are in use pretty much every hour the library is open.
Check out these and other opportunities for early learning through play at ICPL.