The kids’ zone is set to open at the Park Forest Public Library Saturday. (Photo: ENEWSPF)
Park Forest, IL—(ENEWSPF)—September 24, 2012. On the heels of the recent building makeover with the paint barely dry, the Park Forest Public Library has undertaken another new project which involves the complete children’s wing. They have renamed the area the kids’ zone, and in a few short weeks the space will come alive with more books, interactive learning stations, a full size puppet theater, a child-size stage, especially designed area for “tweens” (children ages 10 to 12), a Discovery Center that features wooden trains, Lego building blocks and a variety of other hands-on learning toys for children.
With the help of LFI – Library Furniture International’s design team, Library Director Barbara Osuch and her staff worked for several months to come up with a plan that would meet the needs of the young people in the community. “We looked for ways to make the experience of being in the Library more engaging for children. We want the Library to be a place that kids don’t want to leave, and the place they beg their parents to bring them back,” says Barbara Osuch.
The signature pieces of the kids’ zone are designed to encourage impromptu performances as well as take children through the process of designing and making their own creations, telling stories, and play-acting scenes. ”Above all, we want the kids’ zone to be a fun, colorful space for kids to play actively, think creatively, and have a hands-on experience that mirrors the activities offered in children’s museums,” says Osuch.
Two new kids’ zone staff members are joining the Library team at the end of August. Adina McCollough is the new kids’ zone Coordinator, and Miranda Bell will be coordinating community engagement activities and services as they relate to children and taking the library experience to populations outside the physical walls of the library environment.
A grand opening celebration of the new kids’ zone will be held at the Library on Saturday, September 29 from noon – 4 PM. Frog & Toad, from the classic children’s books by Arnold Lobel, will be among the guests and available for photographs with children. Marilyn Price will present a puppet show at 1 PM, and children’s musician Sandy Lucas will perform a concert at 3 PM. Children’s art activities will be provided throughout the afternoon.
Puppet shows at the kids’ zone. (ENEWSPF)
The kids’ zone will be open year-round, and there will always be something new to discover here. Children and their grown-ups are invited to share books, play games, dress-up and have fun, make puppets, and explore new worlds. “Engagement, using their imagination, is very important for our children, for learning, because this really helps them have a certain perspective on living. When you imagine more, there is more to imagine,” says Osuch.
Click here for more information about Saturday’s Grand Opening event.
Discover kids’ zone Saturday! (ENEWSPF)
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