Our Womb Literacy initiative encourages expecting families to develop a daily reading routine before baby and chaos arrive. Learning about early literacy skills and how children learn those skills enables new and expecting parents to be confident as their child’s first teacher. Benefits include developing a bond between parent and child, encouraging a love of reading and starting a child’s lifelong learning journey, from the very beginning. Statistics indicate children are more successful in school, work and life if they are reading at grade level by the end of third grade. Having books in the home and reading to your child helps with their language development and increased word recognition, getting them off to a good start.
New and expecting families and those families with older children can take part in this initiative through five programs: the Baby Fair, Stork Storytime Podcasts, Read to the Bump, Waddle Walk and 100 Books Before Birth. The annual Baby Fair connects a variety of local businesses and non-profit organizations with new and expecting families to talk to, collect information from, and learn about what resources our community has to offer both before and after their baby’s arrival. Stork Storytime Podcasts enable new and expecting parents to listen to experts when it‘s convenient for them. Guest speakers talk about topics of interest to parents, early literacy skills and how children develop those skills throughout their first years of life. Read to the Bump is an outreach program offered at our local food pantry. It provides free board books and literacy information to expecting moms, building baby’s personal library before they are born. The 100 Books Before Birth program will be available at the library beginning September 2017. It encourages expecting families to do 100 “read alouds” to the bump, establishing a reading routine that can be continued after baby’s arrival. The Waddle Walk is a fundraiser to support the Read to the Bump and 100 Books Before Birth reading programs.
Just as it’s never too late to learn literacy skills and a love for lifelong learning, it’s never too early either!stork Storytime Podcast