Each week, singing and dancing kids have filled the children's area of the Colusa County Library for its Thursday story time for all ages. Now, the library is hoping to bring in even more kids by hosting a Spanish story time each Wednesday mid-morning for toddlers.
Stacey Costello, county librarian, said the newest story time has been running for about six weeks now and is geared for ages zero to five since they are not yet in school.
"It's really fantastic," Costello said. "The kids seem to really love it."
With grants from Wells Fargo, the library has purchased more books to help supplement the Spanish collection, Costello said. Out of that came the idea for a Spanish story time.
Each week for about 30 minutes, Children's Librarian Lupe Ramos leads the children in a Spanish "buenos dias" song, followed by movement activities that improve motor skills. After reading a story or two, the group finishes with an "adios" song.
Costello said the story time follows the state's First Five talk, read and sing campaign, which she said has proven to be effective in the development of toddlers.
Ramos said the youngest Spanish story time attendee is 18 months old and the oldest is 4, with an average of six to eight attendees. She hopes to see a group of 10 to 15.
"We thought it was something needed here because of the high Spanish -speaking population," Ramos said. "It helps me with my Spanish skills as well."
Costello said the library hopes to build a relationship with the Spanish-speaking community and get their input on which books to purchase.
"We want to help them feel like the library is theirs as well," Costello said.
Ramos said the stories cover basic subjects like colors, numbers, ABCs and opposites, and the activities usually have something to do with the story. The activities are usually repetitive, since toddlers have shorter attention spans, she said.
"It's a learning process," Ramos said.
Spanish story time takes place each Wednesday at 11:45 a.m., when most kids get out of preschool. The English storytime for all ages on Thursday evenings (6:30 p.m.) usually has a turnout of 20 to 20 kids and their parents. Ramos hopes the audience for the Spanish story time also grows.