Grand County libraries: Little ones can use the libraries, too |

Grand County libraries: Little ones can use the libraries, too

Edie Strate
Juniper Library
Grand Lake, Colorado

Visit any library in the Grand County Library District and you will find materials and activities for a wide range of people, from senior citizens right down to the very youngest in our community.

Many students and adults go to their local library for schoolwork, research or pleasure. They can find computers, Internet access, resources for homework, or the latest mystery novel. But it is important to note that the library district also provides many resources for infants, toddlers, preschoolers and their caregivers.

Expectant parents can find numerous books on parenthood, nutrition and development of the baby during pregnancy. They can check out “The Miracle of Life,” a DVD that takes you on “an incredible voyage through the human body as new life begins.”

They can also learn about the choice of whether to use a midwife, pore over lists of baby names and their meanings, or research the pros and cons of breastfeeding.

There are books for anxious parents seeking to help their little one sleep through the night, CDs of lullabies, and information on infant massage.

Dr. Spock, Dr. Phil, and the American Academy of Pediatrics are among the many sources of information available. Credible online medical resources can also be found at “Consumer Health Complete,” a database on the GCLD Web site,

Toddlers and preschoolers are the youngest patrons who are joyfully aware of the many thrills awaiting them at their local library. Hot Sulphur Springs’ new Youth Services Librarian Alan Ward said, “A lot of the preschoolers love coming in to do the many puzzles we have.”

Lynn Shirley, Hot Sulphur Springs’ branch librarian, added that she is delighted to have Alan take over that position.

“There is a high demand for male role models that society doesn’t always meet. Having Alan here will let children see that it’s OK to be a boy and to read.” Furthermore, she said, “the kids love him!”

Throughout the Grand County Library District, we have a large collection of children’s books, from wordless picture books, board books for little hands and rhyming stories to primers for beginning readers. Families can also borrow storybooks with accompanying tapes or CDs, as well as audio books and music CDs. These songs, rhymes and stories are fun for both children and adults.

Parents, grandparents and other caregivers of young children might be relieved to know that there are hundreds of books of advice and counseling for those difficult toddler years, including the terrible twos. Our libraries also have resources on dealing with those exciting and challenging second, third or fourth years of life.

Sue Luton at Juniper Library notes that among her favorite library features for little ones are “the wonderful magazines, ‘Wild Animal Babies,’ and all our variety of puppets to enhance story hour.”

At the Fraser Valley Library, Youth Services Librarian Joy McCoy said, “Here in Fraser, our story hours on Mondays and Tuesdays are focused on children preschool age and younger. They are entertaining times for kids to begin the pre-reading skills, and important opportunities for parents to create support groups with one another.

The social interactions during these sessions are amazing for children and adults alike, as everyone loves to listen to interesting stories and interact with a song or few.”

Kremmling Library is on the cutting edge with a nine-volume set of DVDs called “Singing Time!” Youth Services Librarian Lauren Dilts explains, “The DVDs are for parents who would like their babies and toddlers to learn how to communicate with signs before they can talk. I also do a program called “Moms and Tots,” which is a baby sign language program.”

All of the Grand County libraries have children’s story times. Granby Library is unique in that it has a separate story time for preschoolers, and infants and toddlers. Check with your local library for program schedules, but remember, you can go in and spend time reading and playing with your little one at any time. That’s what we are all about.

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