Comienza en Casa: Community Partnerships

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Community Partnerships – at the Milbridge Public Library!

Ana Blagojevic and Milbridge librarian Melissa Rapa-Smith with new materials

Ana Blagojevic and Milbridge librarian Melissa Rapa-Smith with new materials

Several organizations have been working together to support the development of additional learning opportunities for young children and their families in Milbridge, coordinating efforts with the librarian at the Milbridge Public Library.

Mano en Mano|Hand in Hand, donated their bi-lingual and Spanish picture book collection to the Milbridge Public Library. An Americorps worker and an Americorps volunteer will help design and offer programs that support early learning activities at the library, along with other Mano en Mano staff.

In Fall 2013, Mary Ellin Logue, Associate professor Early Childhood Education, University of Maine, received a mini-grant from the University of Maine to support this project.  Funds from the mini-grant have been used to purchase early learning materials that families can use at the library to help their young children learn and get ready for Kindergarten. Three iPads with ebooks and other apps for young children are now available for use at the library. Hardcover books for several of the ebooks have also been purchased, and can be borrowed for use at home, as well as puzzles related to some of the topics of study/interest. A translation app has been downloaded to the iPads, allowing the librarian to communicate with library patrons speaking a language other than English.

Milbridge Elementary School staff (Kindergarten and ESL teachers) are organizing evening meetings at the library, to help families learn more about the library and resources available to them there. The teachers are also involved in other discussions around early learning programming activities at the library.