Celebrating Down Syndrome & AAC Awareness Months: Activities for early learners & families

Shelley pointing to a visual aid featuring autumn animals

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian “I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” That’s a quote from my favorite book, Anne of Green Gables, and one I fully agree with. I love the colors of October, the crisp air of October, the falling temperatures of October. It all fills me with joy. … Read more

Collaborating for success: Supporting early learners & caregivers

Collage of images: A chicken on rocketship, toys in front of a bag with the Collaboration for Early Childhood logo, and birdie on stack of books that reads Early Bird Readers

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian By now, you’re very familiar with our new Early Bird Learning video series, right? Each week we share a new video, alternating between content to watch with your kids and content just for caregivers. To help create content for these videos, we’ve partnered with our friends at Collaboration for Early Childhood, … Read more

Introducing Early Bird Learning videos

New: Early Bird Learning Videos text with chicken on rocketship and birdie on stack of books

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian Let’s take a walk through memory lane! In January 2016, Jenny (pictured above with Ruthie the camel) and I launched the Early Bird Reader program, with weekly literacy tips texted out and monthly videos for caregivers that dug a little deeper into a specific literacy topic. In March 2020, we had … Read more

Exploring social-emotional learning: A new virtual tutorial for caregivers & early learners

A side view of Ruthie the camel puppet

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian At the library, we often hear from parents, teachers, and other caregivers that social-emotional learning (SEL) is important to you. What exactly is SEL? Let’s take a brief look and then dig in below. What is social-emotional learning? Social-emotional learning is a learning approach that helps people understand their emotions, feel those … Read more

Spring sensory play: Videos & activities for early learners

Toddler touching a flower on a bush

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian Play is how kids learn. We say this so often because it’s one of the most important things for adults who raise or work with kids to remember. Librarians included! Babies, toddlers, and preschoolers learn best when they can explore the things and world around them in their own way and own … Read more

April is Autism Acceptance Month

Librarian Shelley Harris points to an AAC board

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian Did you know that April is Autism Acceptance Month? This month devoted to celebrating autistic people and autistic experiences was created 11 years ago by advocate Paula C. Durbin-Westby. In this interview, Durbin-Westby explains, “The word ‘acceptance’ is much stronger than ‘tolerance,’ especially the begrudging sort of tolerance I saw so … Read more

Nature fun: Videos & activities for early learners

Cartoon kids playing in tree outside

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian Jenny and I are huge fans of nature programming at the library. We’ve offered nature classes for babies, toddlers, preschoolers, elementary-aged kids, and kids of all ages with disabilities, for years. That’s because nature allows us to expand learning in both reading and science! As Anne of Green Gables would say, … Read more

Women’s History Month: Videos & activities for early learners

Women's history BINGO card

By Shelley Harris, Children’s Librarian How young is too young to introduce kids to history? There’s no such thing as too young! There are so many delightful and age-appropriate ways to share information on fascinating people from all time periods. Below are some suggestions for videos, books, and activities to share with your early learners! … Read more

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