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Benefits of Visiting a Library with a Preschooler

by Lori Sciame | September 8th, 2015 | Entertainment, Preschool

boy reading (400x400)“Why?”  Every child goes through the phase where he or she asks “why” repeatedly throughout the course of a day.  While being questioned in this manner may seem annoying, it actually signals growth in your child’s intellectual development. Instead of being frustrated, be happy your child has started to question his or her surrounding world.

As a parent of three children, I vividly remember answering hundreds of “why” questions. To be honest, I didn’t know the answer to many of them; however, I did know where to find out the answers: the local library. You, too, can take advantage of library for help with answers to the “why” questions.  In return, your child will reap several benefits.

It can be tempting to search the Internet for easy answers to a preschooler’s endless questions; however, I urge you to tackle at least some of his or her questions in an active way.  As a college instructor, I have encountered too many students who do not have a clue how learn. Many just want the easy answer.  In contrast, there are students who relish the exciting process of discovery.  These students invariably do better academically.

In essence, physically going to the library (and looking for answers in several different ways) will help your preschooler to develop critical thinking skills. Of course, you must do so at his or her intellectual level. For instance, if your child wants to know why rainbows exist, ask the children’s librarian for picture book recommendations. If your practice Christianity, you may also wish to discuss the Bible story about Noah’s Ark.  Finally, you may wish to invest in a prism to create your own rainbow!  As you can see, simply looking up the answer on the Internet is a far cry from the research process explained above.

Not only will your child find answers to why questions at the library, she will find out that people who work at the library not only value learning, they LOVE learning. As you can guess, one way to acquire knoweledge is through meaningful conversation.  Even a preschooler can pick up on the fact that mom and/or dad enjoy talking to the librarian about the why question at hand.

Learning is exciting!  Learning is fun!  A preschooler who witnesses a parent discussing people, places, things, and ideas with other adults learns these two facts fairly early.

Finally, a preschooler who visits the library will interact with others his or her own age.  Suddenly, she doesn’t feel alone in her quest for knowledge.  She can interact with other children, ones who like books, who like to be read to, who like to ask why.

I am hopeful this post encourages you to take your ever questioning preschooler to the local library on a regular basis.  If you do so, I can guarantee your child will develop into a critical reader, writer, and thinker!  He or she will be a person who is never afraid to ask why, and that is an amazing thing.

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