Skidompha Library has three ready-made kits of books and media to share with kids of all ages in the community.
With the closure of in-person programming this year, Skidompha’s children’s librarian began focusing on ways to reach as many children as possible to keep the connection and joy for the library and learning strong.
The three literacy and learning kits are now available to be checked out from the library. The kits were made possible by support from The Rotary Club of Damariscotta-Newcastle, the Anonimo Foundation, and Zoobean.
The early literacy kit for students in prekindergarten through third grade includes 3-5 early reader books, a set of Bob Books, a workbook to practice writing, pen control, and tracing; and an audio CD. There are four literacy kit levels to choose from. The first level begins with basic word and sound recognition, and the final kit level includes early chapter books. Each kit also includes early literacy tips for parents to encourage continued literacy education as a part of everyday life.
The second kit is the music literacy kit for students in prekindergarten through third grade. Music is one of the best ways to increase literacy, as it helps kids learn words by slowing them down and making them easier to remember. Emily Arrow, a well-loved acoustic musician, has created three albums around popular picture books. Skidompha now has a kit for each album. Each kit includes the CD and all the books associated with that album.
There are many books that amplify Black voices for middle-grade readers and loads of picture books for younger readers. Skidompha was looking for resources for newly independent and younger middle grade readers, the first to third grade students. To build these kits, the library focused its efforts on books written by Black authors and books that lift up Black voices and characters. These kits include four books in a mix of fiction and nonfiction. There are some biographies, some early chapter books, and some general nonfiction books. The kits also include a list of resources for adults who need support to begin or continue to have conversations with children about race and racism. Additionally, parenting books that address racism and help adults navigate discussions about racism with children are being added to the library collection.
Skidompha has three nature explorer backpack kits from the Maine Audubon Society that feature birds, wildlife, and plants. Kids of all ages can check out a backpack and a world of wildlife will open up. Each pack has a custom-made user’s guide that walks students through each item in the backpack and provides activities, games, book lists, and more. The books also contain tips for families about how to enjoy nature, nature journal templates, simple craft ideas, and even ways to use smartphones to connect with wildlife. Outdoor time can now become a science-based experience that fosters environmental literacy.
Makey Makey is an invention kit for people of all ages. With Makey Makey, anyone can turn everyday objects into computer keys, touchpads, and more. The inventors of Makey Makey suggest starting with a simple banana piano. Combine the simple keystrokes with coding and the internet, and young inventors will be well on their way to creating something unique. There are myriad possibilities with Makey Makey. Check one out from Skidompha, and see what inspires creativity.
This collection of kits is still growing.
Skidompha is located at 184 Main St. in Damariscotta. The library is open for in-person browsing and borrowing from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday.
Curbside pickup is available from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturday.
For more information, call 563-5513 or go to skidompha.org.