Ames Free Library

"Where the Community Connects"

LIBRARY OPEN FOR HOLDS PICKUP, QUICK BROWSING, AND COMPUTER USE!

Current hours: Monday - Wednesday & Friday - Saturday, 10 a.m. - 5 p.m.; Thursday 10 a.m. - 8 p.m.

  • Visits are limited to a maximum of 45 minutes per person.
  • Total occupancy in the building is limited to 10 visitors at any given time, so short waits outside may be necessary.
  • Please go here for more information on what services are currently available.
  • Email us at info@amesfreelibrary.org, or call 508-238-2000.
  • Check out our list of online programs here!

Early Literacy

Early Literacy Activities: PLAY

When it comes to encouraging literacy skills, outdoor play is just as important for babies and little ones as indoor book- and toy-based play. When we think “early literacy,” we think of books, and storytime, and of sitting to either read or listen. We think of looking at pictures and telling stories with objects representative of the story’s objects (for example, a red ball as Snow White’s apple). What we don’t often think about are large (gross) motor skills and their part in literacy development. 

Early Literacy Activities: WRITE

Regardless of whether today’s kids will learn to print, write cursive, or type on a keyboard or screen – they’ll need to have strong fine motor skills. There are so many fun ways to build your child’s hand strength and coordination! At the library, we use Busy Boxes after storytimes with preschool-aged children; you can recreate these activities at home. Some of our boxes include:

Lacing Cards

Early Literacy Activities: TALK

Many of us native English speakers don’t think twice about the language we use with our children – but if your native language is anything other than English, use it! Encourage grandparents, caregivers, or anyone else Baby interacts with on a regular basis to use the language with which they are most fluent. Contrary to some concerns, this does not confuse babies or delay their speech; it simply gives them more words to express themselves when they are ready to talk. 

Early Literacy Activities: READ

Lazy days of summer are perfect for spreading out a blanket in the shade and sharing some books with your baby. Picture books – even those written for very young children – are perfect for building your little one’s vocabulary, which in turn expands their entire world view. You might not use the word gigantic in everyday speech – but it’s in that story you just read about a dragon! Your little ones are hearing words from books that they won’t hear anyplace else at this age.

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