On Friday 21st February, in Shankill Library, Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council’s Cathaoirleach, Councillor Carrie Smyth, launched the county's innovative dlr Babies Love Books initiative. On hand to help with the celebrations were 9 month old Faye Bluebell O’Brien, 9 month old Aideen DeMel and 5 month old Owen Keyes. All were suitably impressed with the taste, feel and look of the picture books on offer!
Every baby attending their 9 month developmental check up in their local Health Centre in the Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown area, will receive an invitation card to pick up a Baby Bag in any one of the 8 branch libraries. The Baby Bag contains either an English or Irish language book, an information leaflet about the scheme as well astips and suggestions for reading to babies and young children. It also contains an invitation to join the library (for free) so that baby and family can enjoy many more colourful board books, picture books, cds, dvds, audio and e-books to suit all tastes, interests and age ranges. The dlr Librarybranch network is a wonderful resource for bothparents and their children with many libraries also provide weekly storytelling sessions for young children. Dalkey and Dundrum Libraries host weekly Parent and Toddler sessions.
The benefits of reading to babies are well documented and it is never tooearly or late to start. Reading books together can develop language skills, boost a young child's confidence and help them to feel more relaxed.Shared reading can encourage childrento draw and write and studies have shown that the greater the child’s experiences of books and language are, the greater the chance of reading fluency and range of vocabulary. Reading together can also be an important bonding experience for parent and child.
dlr Libraries are grateful to all the staff in Dublin South and Dublin South East Health Centres who have so enthusiastically joined forces with us on this project. Thanks also to Cabinteely-based artist, Fintan Taite, who has provided some wonderful illustrations (with a local flavour!) to complement this initiative.
Blackrock Library 288 8117 (Reopening in May after major refurbishment)
Cabinteely Library 285 5363
Dalkey Library 285 5277
Deansgrange Library 285 0860
Dún Laoghaire Library 280 1147
Dundrum Library 298 5000
Shankill Library 282 3081
Stillorgan Library 288 9655
The Central Library and Cultural Centre opens in September 2014 – a major new amenity in the heart of Dún Laoghaire.