Young Readers Section at Peninsula Center is getting a makeover

Young Readers Section at Peninsula Center is getting a makeover

PVLD has been making exciting changes to the YR section of the Peninsula Center Library. This popular area of the library hosts 9 storytimes a week, many visits from schools, and lots of afterschool and weekend traffic. We’re working on expanding the area and adding whimsy and color to make this an even better destination for kids, parents and caregivers. Inspired by our bronze cheetah statues by renowned artist, Gwynn Murrill,  we’ll be adding hints of the Africa Savanna to our décor. Our project is not yet complete, but come and visit us and see some of these neat, new features!

Let’s start with the space for our youngest library users. We started our project with the storytime room, making it bigger and brighter. More important, we made it more comfortable for children with mobility issues. Instead of risers, we have colorful, flexible seating so kids of all abilities can be comfortable both for storytime and after school. We’ve added some more color on the walls and have some whimsical additions planned. You’ll notice something else new: a Smartboard. Although it might look like a big screen TV, the smartboard is a computer that will allow the librarians to teach information literacy skills to visiting classes and at after school programs. The smartboard was purchased with funds from the Libraries Illuminated grant and has already been a big hit at our Monday Masterminds program. Kids (and grown-ups) are learning things like how to download ebooks or find articles in World Book Online.

Stepping outside the storytime room, we can explore the picture books. This is our most popular collection and our brand new arrangement is easier to browse. There is even plenty of room to push a stroller or pull up a chair. Babies, toddlers, and preschoolers develop early literacy skills by exploring books, playing with toys and interacting with each other and adults, so you’ll see more toys in the area, along with books. Our bead mazes, puppets, and toy kitchen are favorites among the toddler set. As always, we have coloring sheets, crayons and felt pieces too.

Looking past the picture books you’ll discover our folk and fairy tale collection. This is where kids and adults can find stories about princesses, heroes, tricksters and even scary stories from around the world.  When you’re browsing the folk tales, be sure to examine the carved limestone column next to the section. The carving depicts the delightful story, Two Ways to Count to Ten, a Liberian Folktale. The artist, Gwynn Murrill, has made the column a delight to see and to touch.

From the folk tale section, you can see our World language collections. This year, thanks to a grant, we added almost 500 Bilingual Spanish books, and we also boast collections for kids in Chinese, Japanese, Korean and other languages.

Looking toward the window, you’ll spot an awesome new collection: the Media Tie-in books. Kids love to read about familiar characters from movies, TV shows and even toys, so we established this collection in February. It has books about Elsa and other Disney princesses, tales about TV characters like Dora the Explorer and the Paw Patrol, and even stories about beloved toys like Barbie, Transformers and My Little Pony. It has been so popular; we have doubled its size. It’s near the Kids Comics and paperback books so we also added some comfy chairs so kids can relax with super fun, high interest books,.

The library is a place to find fun reading but also reading and information for school assignments. We have added extra tables near the windows so kids, parents and tutors have great light (and a great view) while they work on homework, study or explore a topic they just really love.

We are not done with our changes! Next on the agenda is adjusting and improving the nonfiction shelving. When we are done, it will be easier for kids to find amazing true books about sharks, or sports or even how to make friendship bracelets. We will also be adjusting the shelving to a more logical arrangement for easy books and adding more touches for our early learners. Come and take a look!

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