Play Dates are easy: we play! Many parents under estimate the importance of play in their children’s lives, especially the idea of playing with their child. Play just isn’t entertainment, it’s how your child learns!
A baby building with blocks and knocking them over isn’t just amusing himself. He’s actually learning cause and effect; that when he pushes a block over, the effect is a jumble of blocks on the floor! A toddler pretending that a toy is a phone is learning that one object can metaphorically stand in for another one. And you, as a parent or caregiver, get to guide them during this journey of play!
At our Play Dates, we also play host to different parenting professionals in our community. They’re here to chat, answer any questions, and explain what resources they have to offer you. In the past, we’ve had visits from Nurse Family Partnership, the Autism Society of Berks County, BCIU, and other helpful community agencies that are at your service. For instance, if you have concerns about your child’s social development, one of our parenting experts can give you advice or tell you what services can help you. Or, if you’re wondering how to introduce books to a child that never seems to want to settle down, the librarian can show you how it’s done!
The best part of our Play Dates is that you get to meet other families with children the same ages as your own. It’s a great time to let your children socialize with other kids, especially if you’re preparing them for daycare or pre-school. Plus, it’s a great time for YOU to socialize with other parents who can also give you advice on what they’re experiencing.
Our Play Dates program is part of the National Family Place program. Libraries across the nation offer these types of workshops to introduce literacy, play, and socialization to families in their communities.