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Santa Clara County Library District Promotes School Readiness for Preschoolers

Parents, Adults Encouraged to Support Youngsters’ Early Literacy
SANTA CLARA COUNTY, CALIF.A report released earlier this year by the Pew Research Center’s Internet & American Life Project states that “Americans are most adamant that libraries should devote resources to services for children.”  According to this study, over eight in ten Americans say that libraries should “definitely” coordinate more closely with local schools in providing resources to kids, and strongly support libraries offering free early literacy programs to help children prepare for school.
 
Long recognized for its strong support of knowledge and education for school children, teens and adults, Santa Clara County Library District is reminding library card holders to take full advantage of its exciting programs and services for learners of every age, beginning with young children, ages 0 to 5.
 
“It is never too early to learn,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Mike Wasserman, Delegate for the County Library District Joint Powers Authority.  “I encourage everyone to use the services our libraries provide, especially parents who want to give a head start to their children before they enroll in a school.” 
 
“Public Libraries are crucial partners in education and literacy for our kids and our families,” said County of Santa Clara Supervisor Joe Simitian, Delegate for the County Library District Joint Powers Authority. “They are a huge asset to the community and have to be a priority.”
 
Early literacy contributes to early learning experiences linked with academic achievement, reduced grade retention, higher graduation rates and enhanced productivity in adult life. The Santa Clara County Library District staff applies the principles of Every Child Ready to Read®, a project of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALA) and the Public Library Association (PLA). 
 
Trained librarians guided by the latest research in early literacy demonstrate, instruct, and answer questions about proven methods and easy, everyday techniques that prepare young children for success when they enter kindergarten.   Library story times for toddlers and preschoolers provide a chance to see the principles in action.  The Santa Clara County Library District also offers Baby Lapsit and Stay and Play sessions for age 0 to 1 non-walking babies.
 
 “We take to heart one of the Library’s most vital responsibilities, which is to be supportive to parents and caregivers in their role as children’s first teachers,” said County Librarian Nancy Howe. “Early literacy is an important key to success in school and in life.”  
 
Through Every Child Ready to Read®, parents learn to create home environments where their children’s natural curiosity leads to enjoyable learning experiences. Simple everyday activities like talking, singing, reading, writing or scribbling, and playing can all contribute in a very positive way to the development of language and important pre-literacy skills.
 
Supporting the program is SCCLD’s extensive, quality collection of age-appropriate books, tapes and DVDs.  Booklists by theme and grade level are available on the Kids page of the library website to help parents choose excellent materials.  “Read with Me” story kits containing books, videos, audio tapes and educational toys, bagged and ready to go, also are available for checkout.   Other popular resources are the kid-size AWE computer stations available at all SCCLD libraries. The stations are equipped with engaging games and learning software for children.
 
SCCLD makes the program convenient and accessible with links to the Every Child Ready to Read® website and “Early Literacy Tip of the Week” blog posts.  Contact a SCCLD library for additional program information.
 
About Santa Clara County Library
Known as one of America’s best 100 public libraries, the Santa Clara County Library District promotes knowledge, ideas, and cultural enrichment. Its collection includes 1.8 million books, videos, CDs, DVDs, audiobooks, eBooks and extensive online resources that users can access from home or work.
 
For eleven years, the Library has ranked as one of the best in the nation for its size by Hennen’s American Public Library Ratings, which uses 15 different benchmark measures such as collections, circulation, visits and customer service. Also recognized as one of America’s 2011 Star Libraries by Library Journal and with more than 3.8 million visits each year, the Santa Clara County Library District is one of the most-used public resources in the region.
 
The Santa Clara County Library District includes two bookmobiles, an online library, seven community libraries and one branch library serving Campbell, Cupertino, Gilroy, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Milpitas, Monte Sereno, Morgan Hill, Saratoga and the unincorporated areas of Santa Clara County. In 2012, Santa Clara County Library District had 205,506 library cardholders, recorded 3,186,684 visitors, and a circulation of 9,833.350 items.  Visit Santa Clara County Library District online at www.sccl.org
 
Media Contact: Gwendolyn Mitchell/Marina Hinestrosa, Office of Public Affairs (408) 299-5119; Patricia Lorenzo, Santa Clara County Library Services Manager (408) 293-2326 x 3010; Derek Wolfgram, Santa Clara County Library Services Manager (408) 293-2326 x 3002  
Posted: May 1, 2013