Nurturing a love of literacy and learning from an early age will soon be kids' play for visitors at the St. Louis County Library.
The library system announced this week that it is introducing Read and Play stations, which will use a variety of activities and books to engage parents and young children in productive play while at the library.
RAP stations are based on principles established by Every Child Ready to Read, an educational effort supported by the Public Library Association and Association for Library Service to Children. Each RAP activity is based on one of the ready to read concepts: talk, play, sing, write and read. Activities can be as involved as using a grocery cart and cash register to do pretend shopping and learning the days of the week with a flannel board, or as simple as playing with puppets and sitting down with a parent to read a book.
RAP stations are part of St. Louis County Library's emphasis on early literacy. The stations are designed to be used by children ages 3-6 with a parent or caregiver. Activities will have directions as well as information about which concept is being promoted.
The first RAP station will be about financial literacy and will be available in the children's areas during normal library hours at the Daniel Boone Branch, 300 Clarkson Rd., Ellisville, MO 63011; Florissant Valley Branch, 195 New Florissant Rd. S., Florissant, MO 63031; and at library headquarters, 1640 South Lindbergh, St. Louis, MO 63131. New RAP themes will be created throughout the year; all 20 county library branches will have a RAP station by the end of 2014.