‘Baby Steps’ toward reading

21_1217STRUCK WITH AMUZEMENT  — Young reader Callie Wakkinen enjoys a book at the Conrad Library.  I-O Photo by Deanna Wakkinen

By Deanna Wakkinen, I-O Reporter

A new reading program has made its way to the Conrad Library and babies from near and far are cooing and clapping in excitement.

Baby Steps made its debut Sept. 9 with a small but enthusiastic audience.

This program is for young children from birth to age two. Bonnie Berthelson is the teacher and leads the children in playful songs and colorful stories. With ‘Ms. B’ at the helm this learning boat is set to sail.

The babies and toddlers learn to use their sensory functions, as well as, socialize with others. Touch and feel books and hand gestures during music time are just a few ways your child will be learning to use these functions.

This half hour program is new to the library but fits hand in hand with the old Story Hour, which is based for children three and up. Traditionally, the library would host two Story Hours, and once those hours were full they would introduce a third. With Baby Steps taking up the Thursday spot, however, regular Story Hour filled fast and a waiting list was formed. Unfortunately, a third Story Hour will not open this year.

The library suggests that if you plan to have your children in Story Hour next year, please enroll them early. These programs run alongside the public school year, starting the week after Labor Day and ending the second week of May.

Baby Steps does not have an enrollment form and is a time for mothers (or caregivers) to spend with their child.

For those with small children, Baby Steps is open to you and your child every Thursday at 10 a.m.

For more information, contact the Library at 271-5971.