Inspire a Love of Reading

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The Greater Victoria Public Library has put together programs and suggested activities you can undertake with your grandchildren to help develop a special bond and set up the kids in your life for a love of reading and learning. Programs and services offered by GVPL have changed during the COVID 19 pandemic, however there are still many ways to enjoy the magic of learning together.

Don’t have a library card? Get one in two minutes at www.gvpl.ca/get-a-library-card and start reading, watching, playing, listening and learning right away.

Programs

While there is currently a pause in programs that happen inside the library, outside offerings include monthly COVID-friendly StoryWalks. Details at www.gvpl.ca/gvpl-programs.

Once Upon a StoryWalk

Join us for a StoryWalk®, where individual pages of a storybook, mounted on sign posts, are placed outdoors in a circuit. Children follow the narrative by visiting each sign post in sequence. Rain or shine; please dress appropriately. Check-out www.gvpl.ca for upcoming dates. Everyone welcome; children must be accompanied by an adult.

Or set up one of GVPL’s StoryWalk® kits in your own backyard. Pages from a picture book are placed around the yard in a circuit. Kids and adults go from page to page in sequence, reading the book and discussing characters, illustrations, themes and vocabulary. To find out more, visit www.gvpl.ca/virtual-branch/storywalk.

At Home

Pop into a library branch to access a small browsing collection or visit gvpl.ca to put some of your favourite titles on hold and then bring them home to your favourite comfy reading spot. Share books you remember from your childhood. Tell your grandchild why you loved each book, what you remember about it and why you wanted to share it with them.

Go Digital

Find a wealth of ebooks, audiobooks, magazines, streaming video and games for children (and all ages) at www.gvpl.ca/howdoi/digital. Highlights include Biblioenfants, an online resource where you can find children’s read-along books in French. Check out Mango Languages for an opportunity to learn a new language with your grandkids.

Find the Best of the Best Picture Books on a featured list on Cloudlibrary; you’re sure to find some old favourites and some new ones too! For children’s downloadable audiobooks and streaming TV shows check out Hoopla. And for ebooks for all ages, animated picture books, games for kids and more visit Tumblebooks.

Grandparents who need assistance with any of GVPL’s digital platforms can visit www.gvpl.ca/virtual-branch/help for helpful Niche Academy tutorials.

Special Items to Borrow

Grandparents can borrow a Climate Action To-Go Kit to explore ways of being energy efficient at home—try out a thermal leak detector, a kill-a-watt meter, or a pedometer.

Looking for something fun and creative to do together, borrow an easel and head outdoors for some fun painting or drawing together or check out a Puppets to Go Box and put on your own puppet show.

Get down and play with a Skill Builders Adaptive Toy kit that include tools and toys to help children aged 3 and up develop essential skills—fine and gross motor, language, hand-eye coordination, focus and sensory processing.

Stories to Go

It’s storytime in a box. GVPL’s Stories to Go boxes are a resource for families, caregivers and early childhood educators to use with young children. These theme boxes, available for toddlers or preschoolers, have been designed to meet a variety of interests while helping to develop early literacy skills. Kits include books, music CDs, a rhyme booklet and puppets and include selections in Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Italian and Spanish.

Books to Go

Is there a Lego lover in your family? How about a fairy fanatic? An adventurous astronaut? The Kids Books to Go Bags contain 10 books on one topic to immerse your child in an engaging learning experience. From dragons and dinosaurs to princesses and pirates, the mix of non-fiction and fiction titles will appeal to kids ages five to 10 years old. Pick up a bag of books on variety of topics that are already selected and ready to go by searching for Books to Go—Children’s.

Readers to Go

Readers to Go provide kids learning to read in English or French with a variety of books suited to their reading development. Each bag contains an assortment of short books with controlled vocabulary and related illustrations, plus information on how you can support children learning to read.

Family Picks to Go

With a Family Picks to Go kit, you can dig deeper into a topic with your grandchild. Choose a light-hearted kit like camping, coding or gardening; or one for more serious times, such as coping with the death of a family member or learning about Truth and Reconciliation. Or, choose something in between like getting ready for kindergarten or learning about puberty. These kits are based on requests from library patrons about what they’d like to see. Each kit contains seven books, making it easy for a grandparent to thoroughly explore a topic with their grandchildren.

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