I grew up a major bookworm, getting new books every time I could get my hands on them. I would spend hours reading and at least three times a week my mom would have to come into my room, pull the book out my hand and tell me to go to bed.
I want my kids to love reading as much as I do, but I don’t want to force the issue to the point where they rebel. It’s been amazing to see how much my daughter has blossomed as a reader this year and I know her little brother is watching her very carefully.
I make sure my kids and I hit the library at least once a week. This is all part of my plan. I want them to be comfortable in a place that has information they need. I want them to feel good when surrounded by books and people searching for answers.
Here’s what I love about our library and why I think you need to make a weekly trip part of your family’s routine too!
I admit that I’ve only managed to make it to storytime a couple times with my kids but the few times we’ve gone, they’ve loved it. I loved it too because it’s only recently that I realized children’s librarians are like fairies. They’re amazing. I want to hire them to do the bedtime stories at my house.
2) FREE BOOKS
You ever go to the book store and your kid picks up a 10-page board book, you flip that sucker over and it’s $17?? What was that publisher smoking? If I spent $17 on a book, that’s be the ONLY book in their library. I’m not that kind of mama, breaking a $20 for a book I can read in one breath. Uh-uh. I love that my local library has book carts, ’cause sometimes you want to bring a crapload of books home, so many that you can’t hold them all in your arms and a basket is too heavy.
3) Children’s Programs
Last summer, my local library had a bubble event. The “Bubble Lady” showed them how to make gigantic bubbles using every day household items (hangers, those little plastic containers strawberries come in, etc.). It was so simple but she had about 50 kids hanging on to her every word. It was an awesome way to kill an hour during the summer and it gave us ideas about cheap things to do. Can’t beat that.
4) Reading rewards
Our local library has reading programs all year long, but they really beef it up in the summer with their summer reading programs. You read for a certain amount of time (say, an hour) and get a prize. Keep reading and get more prizes. The key with getting kids to read is to keep kids reading. Give them books about subjects they enjoy and then get out of the way.
5) Movies & Magazines
You know how much movies cost these days?? I bought my husband a Blu-Ray player during Black Friday a couple years ago and now he insists we have to buy all Blu-Ray movies. Ughh. But you can save money by just renting them from the library. I recently made a pledge to stop buying (so many) magazines. I used to buy two food magazines each month, but I realized I wasn’t even cooking anything out of them. So now I grab a few before heading to the children’s area and read them leisurely while my kids play. Win-win.