Toledo Main Branch Library Creativity Center

Toledo, Ohio

The new creativity center at the the Main Branch Library offers an array of free hands-on, participatory enrichment activities designed expressly for today’s busy families and early literacy teachers.

The center is equipped with movable furniture and can be easily reconfigured to accommodate changing programming for individuals, families and class visits. Most importantly, it features participatory learning – an approach which heightens motivation and encourages engagement through meaningful play and experimentation that are relevant to each learner’s interests and stage of development. During the school day, the center can serve many preschool and early elementary school groups and young families, including home-school students. When school is out, the center will be the site of appealing programs for school-age children and their families. The center also provides an appropriate space for the library’s Homework Helpers and Creating Young Readers’ volunteers to assist children one-to-one.

The center features four permanent activity areas. A “Maker Space” in which children, teens and families can engage in various types of creative play such as making crafts, taking apart and reassembling mechanical and digital devices and writing simple code. Another space is the movable seating and tables for hands-on workshops and classes for parents, teachers and other caregivers. The third space is a demonstration kitchen that will allow children, teens and parents to learn about healthy cooking and to observe and participate in cooking and other food preparation activities. The final space is a production space equipped with tools including a die cutting machine and paper cutter and laminator that enables teachers, parents and older students to prepare study aids and other classroom materials. This is particularly useful to staff at early childhood centers who rarely have access to such equipment.

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