Digital Exclusive: Le Mars Public Library promotes early literacy with new program

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LE MARS, Iowa (KCAU) – The Le Mars Public Library has given one of their programs an update.

The new program is called Explore With Me. It gives kids ages 3-8 a bag of activities to promote early literacy.

“The Explore With Me Kits Program is a program that we developed that include activities that promote Early Literacy in a themed bag. So it’s things that might introduce problem solving to children, matching and sorting, math skills, social skills, thing that they need for future success,” said Lisa Vander Sluis, Children’s Librarian at the Le Mars Public Library.

The program replaces their previous Traveling Tales Program and is geared to a more hands on approach to learning.

“We were able to make the Explore With Me kits here at the library because of our Friends of the Library. They wrote a grant to The United Way and because of that grant, we were able to make ten of these bags and everything that’s inside of them,” said Shannon Jensen, Children’s Department staff.

The Explore With Me Program was introduced last month, and has become a very popular part of the library.

“So far, we’ve had all positive feedback and I feel the fact that there aren’t any on the shelf over there speaks for itself that people are enjoying them,” said Vander Sluis.

“We love that they have all the different activities all together. They make a really great– We home school, so they make a really great supplemental program for the three-year-old,” said Stefanie Cargin, a parent from Le Mars, Iowa.

Families can checkout one kit per library card and have it for three weeks. The library even offers options to reserve a kit that has already been checked out.

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