The Early Literacy Program at the New Orleans Library aims to inspire questioning and creativity

The Early Literacy Program at the New Orleans Library aims to inspire questioning and creativity

The library launches a new monthly program to boost early literacy and creativity skills through free play, using the most epic collection of blocks you’ve ever seen.

Giant wooden blocks come in a variety of shapes, and library staff can ask children a variety of open-ended questions about what they are building. This helps children build narrative skills and play techniques, two important skills needed to begin reading.

Play is one of the five pillars of early literacy, the basic knowledge children need about reading and writing before they can learn to read and write. Other pillars are speaking, singing, writing/drawing to build fine motor skills and finger muscles, and reading. The event is designed for children up to 5 years old and their caregivers.

The Library will host “Group Parties” from 4 pm to 5 pm on the third Friday of the month through February at rotating locations.

The first gig will be at Alvar Library, 913 Alvar Street, on December 2.

Primary sex education: The New Orleans Public Library and Planned Parenthood Gulf Coast will host Starting Early Conversations, a two-part workshop series for families with precocious elementary students to discuss age-appropriate sex education resources.

Designed for children ages 5-8 and their caregivers, this program will focus on conversations about the healthy body, families, childbirth and celebrations.

The workshops will take place from 4 pm to 5:45 pm December 1 at the Regional Library of Algiers, 3014 Holiday Drive. Space is limited and registration is required. Sign up at events.nolalibrary.org.

urban imagination: The Library’s Urban Fiction Book Club will meet at the Norman Mayer Library, 3001 Gentile Blvd., from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. on December 3 for a fun, open-minded discussion of Carl Weber’s The Man on the Run.

The group meets on the first Saturday of every month, and new members are always welcome. January’s pick will be “Lady of the House” by EN Joy.

Kwanzaa celebrations: The New Orleans Public Library kicks off its Kwanzaa celebrations early this year with a free, three-part financial literacy series honoring the principle of ujama, or cooperative economics.

The second workshop of the Finance Lunch Hour Workshop begins at noon on December 6 at the East New Orleans Regional Library, 5641 Read Blvd. , and it all revolves around home ownership.

It is recommended to register, and lunch will be provided for the first 20 people. Visit events.nolalibrary.org to register.

Online skills: The New Orleans Public Library has partnered with the AARP Foundation, Senior Technology Services and Friends of the New Orleans Public Library to bring Digital Skills to Seniors 50+, a workshop series that will run through 2023.

The December lecture is about connecting cloud storage. Program times and locations are:

  • 2 p.m. Dec. 7, Main Library, 219 Loyola Ave.
  • 3 p.m. December 15, Nora Navra Library, 1902 St. Bernard Street.
  • 2 p.m. on December 21, Algiers Regional Library, 3014 Holiday Drive
  • Noon Dec. 28, East New Orleans Regional Library, 5641 Read Blvd.

tack for all: Anyone can stop by the main bookstore, 219 Loyola Ave. , between 1 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. on December 6 to check out the Best Buy Teen Tech Center. Normally only open to ages 13-18, the center is open to all ages on the first Tuesday of every month.

The center is a free maker space where teens can have fun, develop skills, and explore their interests through hands-on, project-based learning.

It comes with gadgets like 3D printers, a green screen, a recording studio, virtual reality headsets, and more. Details at bbttc.nolalibrary.org.

Janet Legros is the Director of Marketing and Communications at the New Orleans Public Library.

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