National Library Board: Raising Early Readers for Life
Reading has always been such an integral part of my life that I hope to share the wonders of books with my children.
We’ve shared experts’ advice why families who read together nurture more than just literacy and 7 ways to engage a toddler in reading and word fun. Like many other mums and dads, we try to be disciplined when it comes to reading but it can get a little challenging now with our new baby.
As busy working parents, we often lament the limited time (and perhaps, energy!) to constantly bring the kids out to new places. We probably forgot that one of the most enjoyable activities that have taken our minds to new wanders without us actually moving is through reading.
And, if you’ve just had a new baby or expecting a baby and wish to develop a reading habit together, this is right up your alley!
The good news?
Babies born from 2016 onwards are in for a reading book-anza!
The National Library Board (NLB) and Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) have rolled out an initiative for the little ones under the Early Read Program.
What is the Early Read Program?
To support parents in their children’s development, the NLB and ECDA have a string of expert workshops and activities in place for children under 6 years old. Browse this site for upcoming programmes that are suitable for your kids.
As part of the campaign, Singaporean babies born from 2016 onwards are gifted with a special pack so parents can kickstart a reading journey with their little ones. Membership fees apply for non-Singaporeans. More information is available at www.nlb.gov.sg.
What is in the gift pack for my baby?
A well-thought gift pack is put together to encourage reading. Here’s what each bag contains:
– 3 board books
– A Reading is Fun! booklet
– A guide for reading with little ones DVD
– A rhymes and fingerplays for little ones (It’s NOT a calendar but a helpful collection of rhymes you could share with your bubs – I thought this was really thoughtful, especially if you have limited songs on your human jukebox! PLUS, it comes with some books recommendation too!)
– A height chart (with recommended books at different age groups too!)
– A special edition library card (there’s an owl on it – need I say more? :P)
– A tote bag (very handy for each library visit!)
How to redeem my gift pack?
- Bring your child’s birth certificate and a parent’s NRIC to any library, EXCEPT library@orchard, library@esplanade and library@chinatown.
- The customer service personnel would hand you a form to put down your personal particulars.
- Wait for your library card to be prepared. The entire process took us about 20 minutes (the staff didn’t seem very familiar with using the software/printer, and hence I gathered that the take-up rate must be really low.).
- The gift pack and your child’s library card will be presented to you.
How many books can my child borrow with his/her library card?
This library card encompasses the basic membership, and allows a loan of up to 8 library items, including 3 audio visual materials. More information on borrowing privileges can be found here.
Library opening hours can be found here: http://www.nlb.gov.sg/VisitUs.aspx
While chatting with the library personnel, we learned that this program was only communicated through selected hospitals such as KK Women’s and Children’s Hospital (KKH) and to new mums only.
It’s a pity not to share this wonderful news with fellow new mummies. Don’t forget to share this with them so they can embark on a reading journey with their babies too!