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Never Too Young to Read

New parents take books home with babies

First-time parents in Anne Arundel County now have another bundle to carry home from the hospital: Baby Learns to Read Bags.
    The bags include board books, a library card application and activity cards for early literacy as well as guidance for parents on being their child’s first teachers.
    The bags go home with parents of children born at both the Anne Arundel Medical Center and the University of Maryland Baltimore Washington Medical Center.
    The 1,000 bags are gifts from the Anne Arundel County Public Library and Public Schools systems, donated to promote language and literacy as well as help parents bond with their child.
    “These bags plant the seed for life-long learning,” said Library CEO Hampton ‘Skip’ Auld. “We stand proudly with our partners in the ­county public school system in helping prepare young children for kindergarten and future academic success.”
    The library system offers many tools to help prepare children for reading. Child Ready to Read programs are weekly events in every branch. The programs focus on reinforcing five early literacy practices: talking, reading, singing, writing and playing. These skills are critical for kindergarten readiness.
    Funding came from the Anne Arundel County Public Library Foundation, Twenty First Century Foundation, Early Childhood Coalition and Franklin’s Toys.