Today we have a special guest on the blog! Wendy Preilis tells us a little about the Baby TALK program at Johnson Memorial Health, in partnership with Johnson County Public Library.
We encourage all of our new parents to register for the Baby TALK program to help give your baby the best start and to encourage early literacy in Johnson County.
JMH: Wendy, tell us a little bit about yourself!
Wendy Preilis: I'm Wendy Preilis, Coordinator of the Adult Learning Center at Johnson County Public Library (JCPL) since May 2011. I was born, raised, and educated in Franklin, Indiana. I married my high school sweetheart and we have 2 children—Jacob and Gwen. I registered for the Baby TALK program through Johnson Memorial Health in 2003 and 2005 and loved getting the newsletter in the mail.
JMH: What is the Baby TALK program?
Preilis: Baby TALK (Teaching Activities for Learning and Knowledge) is a national program designed to provide parents with age-appropriate tips to engage their children in activities that promote learning. JCPL registers families to receive the developmental newsletters beginning in the hospital at birth until the child turns 36 months old.
JMH Guild and the Library have partnered to provide all families with a literacy packet and board books to help families start their home libraries.
JMH: Can you tell us a little about the importance of early literacy and why new moms should be thinking of this right away?
Preilis: Research shows that when we read and talk to babies we are helping to create brain connections that are associated with language development. It also helps to make children able and ready to learn once they enter kindergarten. Locally, there is an overwhelming number of children not ready when they enter kindergarten. JCPL wants to help change that. Programs like Baby TALK educate parents on what they can do at home to help!
JMH: What can new moms do to promote early literacy with their newborns?
Preilis: Begin reading, talking, singing with their new baby right away!
Of course, frequent visits to JCPL will help too.
JMH: What JCPL programs would you suggest to new Johnson County Moms?
Preilis: Check out the Early Literacy page. We have fun programs for children and parents, like Every Child Ready to Read (all branches), Bouncing Babies, Wonderful Ones, Terrific Twos, and Tot Art.
JMH: Thanks for sharing about this program today! Anything else to add?
Preilis: JCPL has many resources for families to promote early literacy, like Check online or stop in at any of the four branches located around the county!More Resoures from Johnson County Public Library:
Memo For Mom blog - http://www.pageafterpage.org/memo-for-mom/
My Little Rhyme Book (free ebook)