Monday, December 15, 2014 - 12:00p.m.
St. Louis County Library is partnering with area hospitals to make sure new parents know about the importance of early literacy. Starting in January, the Born to Read program will provide new parents at four area hospitals with a gift bag from the library containing a board book, bath toy, activity calendar, milestone marker and instructions on how to get a library card. Parents will also receive an invitation to celebrate their child’s first birthday at the library where they will receive another free book.
The four area hospitals participating in Born to Read are St. Anthony’s Medical Center, SSM DePaul Health Center, St. Clare Health Center and Missouri Baptist Medical Center.
Library Director Kristen Sorth said, “Studies show that when children start behind, they stay behind. The goal of Born to Read is to foster a love of reading starting at birth and to emphasize the importance of reading to children of even the youngest age.”
Recent studies have shown that children who are exposed to language and reading at an early age have a better chance of succeeding in school and beyond. Born to Read will give children a head start on developing crucial literacy skills, while introducing parents to the wealth of resources available at their local library.
SLCL offers a variety of tools for parents to engage their young children in learning, including kindergarten readiness programs, story time, preschool appiness workshops (where parents can learn about educational apps), and Family Literacy Involvement Program (FLIP) kits. More info about early literacy resources at SLCL can be found at www.slcl.org/early-literacy.
Born to Read hopes to serve several thousand families in 2015. Financial support for the program comes from the St. Louis County Library Foundation. Born to Read was the featured “pledge for a cause” at the Foundation’s annual gala held in September 2014.
To learn more about Born to Read please call 314-994-3300 or visit www.slcl.org.