Babies Belong at the Library!

There are many things to love about the library as a parent—lots of books, a fun and safe place for your children to explore and play, and storytimes designed especially for your child’s age. But did you know that we offer all these things for babies, too?

IMG_5577A lifetime of learning and literacy begins at birth. In the first four years of life, the brain increases to 80% of its adult weight. The brain then begins to prune connections based on experience. Connections used regularly become stronger and more complex. Connections not used are considered non-essential, and the brain eventually prunes them away to increase efficiency. What this means for you is the more connections you help your baby make early on in life, the better off your child will be—creating a child who is ready to learn when kindergarten begins and ready for a lifetime of learning beyond, too.

With an expansive collection of wonderful board books for babies, we help you to help your baby love books. Don’t worry if all your baby wants to do is chew on the book—that is how they learn! Modelling how to turn pages, pointing out favorite things (“Look, it’s a dog! We have a dog, too!”), and simply sharing a love of reading will do wonders for your baby.

Should my baby be rolling over by now? Why does he put his foot in his mouth? When will she laugh? If you are wondering about your baby’s development, we have staff members who are trained to administer the ASQ Ages and Stages Questionnaire. It is a quick snapshot of your baby’s development. You simply mark a few answers on five different developmental areas, then discuss the results. It is a great way to learn more about your baby’s development and where they are heading. Whether you are just curious to know how things are going or are concerned that your baby may have developmental delays, it is a great first step. We will come to the branch that is most convenient for you! To schedule an appointment, call Tyra at 859-342-2665, extension 8138.

IMG_20150408_100739143Best of all, the library offers Baby Time. You might wonder what in the world you do at a baby storytime…mostly, we have fun! Babies just love storytime. Peek in the window one morning and you’ll see lots of babies who are learning about so many things while they have a wonderful time! Storytime is a great way to bond with your little one, cuddling up together while you learn new rhymes, songs, and knee bounces to share at home, too! Babies’ brains are like sponges—bringing your baby to storytime supplies you and your baby with the fuel she needs to learn how to read when kindergarten comes around.

Baby Time also offers both you and your baby a chance to get out and socialize with parents and caregivers who are experiencing the same milestones that you are. This is especially important for you new mommies and daddies who are feeling overwhelmed! Lifelong friendships are made at storytime—not just for babies, but for you too!

Baby Time is a free opportunity for you to bond with your baby in a safe and fun environment while sharing your love of the library with your baby! We offer Baby Time at our Main and Scheben locations. Join us Wednesdays at 9:30 a.m. at the Main library and Fridays at 9:30 a.m. at the Scheben branch now through April 25, then come back for our summer session starting in June. Scheben also offers an evening Baby Time on the second Monday of the month at 6:30 p.m.. We can’t wait to see you there!

–Susan

Susan Sitz has been a Youth Services Associate with BCPL for seven years. She has worked with children and teens of all ages, but loves getting to work with babies and toddlers best!

 

Ghosts in the Lents Branch?

Boone County Public Library’s Lents Branch is special for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the generous donation made by Ralph V Lents to construct it.  Built in 1989 as BCPL’s second branch, Mr. Lents was very involved in the planning for the facility before his death in 1984.  It was very important to him that the people of Boone County have the chance to explore their interests, learn and grow.  His commitment to the project was fierce and unparalleled and seems to have continued even after his passing.

For years, staff and customers have reported strange activities inside the Lents Branch and on the property.  There are lights that flicker on and off.  Cell phones don’t always get great reception and electronics fail at a much higher rate than in other library branches.  Some people report feeling like someone is behind them or in the building with them on quiet nights.  Custodial staff have been touched or heard their names called when in the meeting room late at night. Still others claim to have seen ghosts or mists. Renowned ghost hunter Patti Starr claimed to have seen a little man in a brown suit standing in the corner of the meeting room.

These happenings have become so common that staff started to joke that it might be Mr. Lents.  But could it really be him?  Is he still checking on the library after all this time?  The only way to find out is to investigate!  On March 7th, a group of volunteers, PINK (Paranormal Investigators of Northern KY), worked with library staff to check the building for paranormal activity and the presence of spirits or ghosts.  A full range of diagnostic equipment was brought in to analyze and research the premises.

Video cameras were set up all over the building along with audio equipment and various devices intended to capture any movement, sound or image that might indicate a spiritual presence.  A medium came as well to try to make contact with any apparitions that might be lingering around the library.

In the meeting room, where much of the reported activity has occurred, the team had flashlights flicker in response to questions, cold spots and a spirit box would respond directly to questions. When the spirit was asked its name, the response was “Ralph”. When asked what road runs past the library, the box clearly said “North Bend”.

Later the team moved into the main portion of the library by the front desk. It was here that the medium felt the presence of a female who felt like she was “in charge”. Here too, flashlights would respond to questions and motion sensors would go on even though no one from the team was moving. Who could this be? Tillie Tanfani was the branch manager at Lents from 1989 to her death in 2004. Is Tillie watching over the library she so loved? Are Ralph Lents and Tillie Tanfani watching over the little branch in Hebron? If they are, they are most assuredly the library’s guardian angels.

PINK is currently analyzing the information they collected and will present a big reveal with their results when they are finished. Watch for a future blog post on this subject!

–Bridget

Bridget Striker, graduate of the University of Kentucky, has been with BCPL since 2001 where she uses her background in archaeology, historic preservation and GIS mapping to ferret out elusive bits of Boone County history as the Local History Coordinator. Bridget serves as Vice-Chair of the Boone County Historic Preservation Review Board and Executive Board Member of the Rabbit Hash Historical Society.