Harper Robinson couldn’t wait to turn 5 so she could get her very own grown-up library card.
The wait ended last week when she and her mom, Stacey Robinson, made a special trip to the Wayne County Public Library to get the card.
Anna Snyder, head of children’s services at the library, said there are two types of library cards for children.
“When you’re born, you can come and get a My First Library Card,” she said. “You can get only 10 print items per visit with that card.
“When you turn 5, you can get the big card like adults get. So, they have all the privileges of a grown-up when they turn 5. You can check out up to 30 items per visit and also get movies. You can get all of the e-books on our website, too. They can also use the computer to access any of our digital resources like e-books. Or they can just get on the internet and do homework.”
Snyder said the cards are available to get children used to visiting the library and reading print books with their parents or caregivers.
“We think it’s very important for people to read to their children starting at birth to get them bonding with their parents with books, learning how to hold books, looking at pictures in books, learning vocabulary,” she said. “All those things are so important for future successes.”
Being an avid reader can help anyone later in life, she said.
“Your vocabulary is bigger,” Snyder said. “You can be more empathetic because you see all kinds of people and animals and situations in books that you may not encounter in real life. You can also use your imagination to grow.
“You can learn to do anything by reading books, like crafting and cooking. Reading’s important your whole life.”
Stacey Robinson said her daughter has lots of experience with books through the Partnership for Children’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library, which she’s been part of since she was born.
But that stops at the age of 5.
Also, the Robinson family has been packing to move across town since February and packed away all of Harper Robinson’s books.
“So, we started coming to the library using my card,” Stacey Robinson said. “We’re excited for her to transition over here since she won’t be doing the Partnership program anymore.”
Harper Robinson’s parents explained to her what a library card would do for her.
“She’s all excited about getting her card,” her mother said.
She even has a special place for her library books at home — a purple bag. She said she’s going to put her library card in her special mermaid purse and put that in the purple bag, too.
The 5-year-old loves books about unicorns. She also likes books about dinosaurs, princesses and animals.
“Usually, as soon as we get in the car on the ride home, she’s looking through every single page of all the books,” Stacey Robinson said. “When we get home, it’s usually quite a bit before bedtime. Then as soon as it’s bedtime, she knows the drill, go pick out one blue book she wants to read, then pick out one library book she wants me to read.”
She has some blue books at home that help her with short vowel sounds.
“When I’m reading the book, usually I’m asking her questions, too,” Stacey Robinson said. “She’s very curious and wants to know why did she do that, why did that little girl jump out of the tree, what do you think is going to happen next. So she’s excited to turn the page and see what’s going to happen next. She does really good with understanding.”
She’s also getting pretty good with her reading skills, said her dad, Daniel Robinson.
“Her vocabulary has increased,” Stacey Robinson said. “Her comprehension has increased. She’s gotten a love of learning. And she’s being exposed to different places through books. They’re just like sponges. There’s so much in books that you don’t realize they’re looking at and understanding.”
Harper Robinson will have a little sister this month, and she will be enrolled in the Partnership’s Dolly Parton Imagination Library.
“When her little sister turns 5, we’ll get her a library card, too,” Stacey Robinson said.