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Fran Bing, a youth services technician at the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune library, reads an educational story to parents and their children during Storytime at the Midway Park Community Center, Aug. 10. Those who attended made their own s’mores and were given a fun lesson on ponds and some of the creatures who live in them.

Photo by Cpl. Damany Coleman

Storytime brings together children, parents for fun, educational reading

10 Aug 2011 | Cpl. Damany Coleman

Reading is indefinitely fundamental. To promote the importance of exposing children to books at a young age, as well as other educational endeavors, Marine Corps Community Services has made several storytimes available for children to read, have fun and learn something new.

Parents and their children were given a short lesson on ponds, as well as other educational facts and yummy snacks, during a Silly Snacks and Storytime event at the Midway Park Community Center, Aug. 10.

Fran Bing, a youth services technician with the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune Library, read ‘Fireflies, Fireflies Light the Way,’ ‘In the Small, Small Pond,’ ‘Otters Under Water’ and ‘Busy Beaver.’ Bing also took time to help the children properly identify some of the creatures that call ponds home.

“Storytime was started 22 year ago,” said Bing. “We do it at the library, day care centers and community centers every week. It’s designed mostly for preschoolers but we welcome any age group.”

Bing added that she believes the sooner you start reading to children, the faster they progress at it.

“Some days I get to read my whole bag of books, other days I can only get through three,” said Bing. “Part of the problem is that it’s been too hot outside for the kids to go out and play, but their energy has to go somewhere. So it’s hard to get them to sit still and listen sometimes.”

Bing said on average, she does more than a dozen storytimes a week, pressing the importance of early reading to children and young parents.

“You get the children and families used to coming so they can share the love of books,” said Bing. “If you don’t share it, you’re going to lose it. Starting at this age, gives the parents a chance to see what we have to offer. Storytime is also an opportunity for parents to socialize – some of these parents have gone two to three days without time to even talk to another grown–up.”

Jacquelynn Pfeil, a military spouse, said coming to storytime is great for stay at home parents to get their kids out and socialize.

“I came to a Mommy and Me Yoga class and saw a few other things that were offered, and this was one of them,” said Pfeil. “This is my second class and I would recommend it to any other parent.”

Aimee Cordy, another military spouse who attended Storytime, said storytime is fun and everyone enjoys it.

“We enjoy it, especially my four year old,” said Cordy. “They really like the dancing and music afterward. (My son) is just now learning to sit still for the reading. I think it’s a great learning experience.”

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