Want to give your child a gift that will last a lifetime? Get them a library card!
From toddlers to teenagers, Libraries NI welcomes children by providing a fun and safe environment. Most of our libraries have an area for children to sit and relax and each library provides a range of books and other resources to borrow or enjoy in the library.
Summer Reading Challenge
This is a major themed initiative run every year in public libraries right across Northern Ireland. Children are encouraged to challenge themselves to read a number of books over the summer months. Library staff will run a number of events to encourage the children as well as provide constant support and advice to encourage the children to have fun whilst reading.
Bookstart: Bookstart is a national scheme offering free books to every child. The scheme is based on the belief that it is never too soon to share books with babies and that children introduced to books at an early age start school with an advantage that can last throughout their lives. Find out more about Bookstart Packs here!
Rhythm & Rhyme: Branch libraries host Rhythm and Rhyme sessions for babies and toddlers accompanied by parents and carers. Each session lasts around 30 minutes and gives the adults and children time to have fun together. The session is led by a member of staff, and carers and children are invited to participate at whatever level they wish.
Storytimes: Storytime sessions are held in most libraries for young children in the 4 – 8 age range. These sessions introduce children to experiences beyond their own world in addition to improving concentration skills and extending vocabulary.
Reading Groups: Reading groups for 7 – 9 and 9 – 11 years and teenage reading groups for 12 -14 years are held in many libraries. Reading Groups aim to encourage members to read for pleasure, read adventurously and share their opinions (good or bad!) on books and authors.
Seasonal Events: Branch libraries organise seasonal events which may include craft activities, competitions and storytimes celebrating occasions such as Chinese New Year, Valentine’s Day, World Book Day, Easter, Mothers’ Day, Fathers’ Day, Summer Reading Challenge, Hallowe’en, and Christmas.
Class Visits: Schools are invited to participate in our Class Visit programme.
Youth Groups: Libraries also welcome visits from other groups such as Brownies, Scouts, GB, BB and Duke of Edinburgh students etc. These visits can be tailored to the needs of the groups.
Young Surfers: 0 – 16 years
Children and teenagers can enjoy free use of computers, email and internet if they are library members. Children under 16 years of age must have signed permission from their parent / guardian. Children under 8 must have their parent and guardian beside them whilst using the internet.
For peace of mind, all library computers have a strict level of internet filtering applied when accessed by Young Surfers.