Eimear McGinn, Paul Dunne, and Rua, the Kildare Library Mascot presenting a Book Pack ’Read with Rua’ with Emma Strain, baby Annabelle, and Mia Rose, Kildare Town, at the pilot launch of the book pack
It is never too early to start reading to your child — even do it from birth. That is the message behind Kildare town’s library latest initiative which was launched recently.
There was a great turn out of tiny tots at the launch and Kildare mascot Rua was there on Friday, December 16 last dressed up in his new festive gear.
Local Cllr Suzanne Doyle welcomed everybody to the library and handed out goodie bags to all the
“There has been a great take up of this initiative,” she said.
“Remember books are full of places to go and people to meet.”
Emer McGinn from the Children’s Books Ireland then welcomed everybody including lots of babies and their parents to the launch and spoke about the importance of reading.
“It is never too early to start reading,”she said.
“Simply having books in the home sends an important message. Reading to your preschool child develops early literacy skills and helps them prepare for learning to read once they reach primary school.”
Participants also heard that early literacy skills helps a child to develop listening skills and increases their attention span. It helps them to develop an interest in books and to see reading as a fun activity.
“It gives them an opportunity to explore their ideas and feelings and improves their social skills and their understanding of the world,” she added.
“It helps foster their creativity and curiosity and it is a special time for you to cosy, cuddle up and have fun reading together.”
Paul Brady from Cill Dara Housing Association who are also involved in the scheme said that this is a pilot project.
“We hope to make it an annual event and it could be something that other libraries across Kildare could look at. There was a great up take here today and over all a great interest in the project.
“The book pack pilot is for babies from 0-1.5 years. It has kindly been made up by the county library and it is aimed on the parents and guardians to read to the children, where it is proven to have a positive cognitive development on the child even at this early age.”
Participants were reminded that it is free to join the library and it is best to let children choose their own books which they like best from the library.
Children learn that reading can be fun and reading together could be a real treat instead of sweets.
Parents and guardians were advised to be a reading role model and to have plently of books in the home and read them regularly.
Pick a time when you are not stressed to find a comfortable spot and read together.