Today Bella and Sophie and I went to our first story time at the library. There were about six other 2-3 year-olds there and a couple of younger sisters about Sophie’s age.
Each of the children was given a yellow duck name tag on a ribbon blue ribbon to hang about their necks. They all sat on little mats with alphabet letters and a picture. Bella sat on the A mat with an ant on it. Sophie decided she wanted to join the circle and appropriated a mat for herself. Fortunately not all the children who preregistered showed up so there was space for her.
The librarian read two books and sang three songs. Then she had a craft project for the children, making tissue paper flowers and gluing them onto a piece of paper and then drawing stems and leaves with a green marker.
Bella spent most of the time watching the other children. She isn’t really used to songs with finger play. That’s just not my thing. So she didn’t know how to follow along. Of course even if she’d been familiar with the song and hand movements, her pace tends to be much slower. When she sings along to the stereo she always falls behind.
The crafting showed her just as much of a fish out of water. She didn’t know what a glue stick was. And again she was more interested in what everyone else was doing than in making the craft. She did crumple some tissue paper and glue it onto the page and made a few half-hearted marker strokes. Then I did the rest. But I think she enjoyed it.
After most of the children left there was one mother with two little girls who stayed behind to let the girls play and to check out some books. Her older daughter was a couple of months older than Bella and her younger was a couple of months younger than Sophie, though about the same size. We chatted a bit while the kids played and eventually Bella and the other girl, Libby, hit it off, chasing each other around the children’s section with many giggles and shrieks. I finally had to pull Bella away and placated her with promises we’d be back next week and would see her new friend again.
I’m glad we’re so very close to the library and that it is easy to get in and out of. We didn’t go all that often in Salem just because parking on the street was such a pain and the children’s section was hidden in the basement and was a bit of a hassle to visit. This isn’t the kind of activity I love. I’m too shy and introverted to really enjoy this kind of mingling with strangers. But the girls seemed to enjoy it and I do think it’s nice for Bella to have opportunities to meet and play with new children, especially now that she’s getting to the age where she actually interacts with them.