Millvale Community Library, Robinson Township Library and Western Allegheny Community Library were recognized by the Pennsylvania Library Association with Best Practice Awards for their outstanding efforts in children’s programming.
Millvale Community Library earned the Honorable Mention for Family Programming for Small Fry Friday, a suite of programs for children and families held from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. every Friday. Comprised of Storytime, MiniMakers and Free Play, Small Fry Friday collectively builds on early literacy skills by supporting the healthy development of children in Millvale. The program also promotes hands-on maker education to reinforce learning and social literacy in a relaxed, drop-in environment.
Robinson Township Library earned the Best Practice Award for School Age Programming for Passport Pals, which provides elementary aged children with an opportunity to explore other counties and cultures by promoting a sense of inclusion and respect for others outside of the United States. Each month, children get to “travel” to another country and explore. Children receive their own passport, world map, country fact sheet, recommended book list, and country specific bookmark, and they are able to participate in a variety of activities.
Western Allegheny Community Library earned the Best Practice Award for Display and Design for Teen Recommendation Cards, a fun and easy way for teens to leave their mark on the library and get involved. The cards are dry erase and placed around the teen department for teens to pick a favorite read and tell others about it. Recommendations are not just for books but board and video games as well. The Teen Recommendation Cards are a way for the teens to get more involved at the library.
Western Allegheny Community Library also earned the Best Practice Award for Infant/Toddler Programming for Building Blocks, which helps caregivers and babies experience the joys of reading together. Reading, talking, playing and singing are crucial to a child’s growth and development and the reason behind the Building Blocks program. Packs include a black and white board book, activity guide, book list, a reusable bag and tips on the importance of reading.
Since 2004, the committee has recognized Pennsylvania libraries for their exceptional services to youth (birth to 18) with the Best Practice Award. Programs considered to be “best practice” support learning and literacy, and are effective in reaching intended goals, cost-efficient, age-appropriate, easily replicated, favorably received and innovative. Community collaboration and promotion or recognition of PA Forward is a plus as well. Winners will receive the awards at the annual Pennsylvania Library Association Conference, which is at the Double Tree Green Tree in October.