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There are very few programs that guarantee great attendance, but animal programs are a safe bet for all age groups. Who wouldn’t want to snuggle with kittens, meet rescue dogs or learn about exotic animals? Here are a few of my tried-and-true ideas to incorporate some furry (or slimy, feathery or slithery) friends into your programs.
As libraries become centers of community-based lifelong learning, they seek more opportunities to enhance access to natural spaces located in the communities they serve. The nonprofit Children & Nature Network (C&NN) helps librarians find the partners and resources they need to understand how and why to connect children and families to nature. C&NN also helps potential partners understand the impacts that can derive from working with libraries.
Story Time in the Orchard is an all-ages story time hosted by Boyertown Community Library and Frecon Farms. It is held outdoors on Thursdays at 9 a.m. from mid-June through October, weather permitting.
This program enhances awareness of local agriculture, provides a family experience of nature and boosts health literacy while having fun.
Once a week in summer months, we have a program for kids in the small courtyard just outside of our youth department. The program, called Nature Play, is extremely popular with young children between the ages of 2 and 5 and their caregivers. It’s all about letting kids get outside with supplies and providing activities for exploring natural elements (like sand, water and dirt) — and, of course, getting a bit dirty in the process.