Take the Fun of Storytime Home with You
Let's face it, winter in Canada can be hard! Between the snow, the cold and the countless hours it takes to remove your child's snowsuit, we here at the library know that sometimes it is difficult to make it into a branch for storytime. But do not worry! As always, we have got you covered. Toronto Public Library has a variety of free services for children and their families that will allow you to take the fun of storytime home with you.
Through Dial-a-Story, children can listen to stories at home 24/7 by dialing 416-395-5400. Stories are available in 16 languages: English, French, Cantonese, Gujarati, Italian, Korean, Mandarin, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Somali, Spanish, Tamil, Tagalog and Urdu. We have stories for younger children (0-7 years old), and for older children too (up to 12 years old). Try calling in just before naptime or bedtime for a fun surprise. With Dial-a-Story, storytime is literally just a phone call away!
Similarly, Hear-a-Story is another great service that allows children to listen to stories for free 24/7 in the comfort of their own home. Available through our children's website KidsSpace, stories can be downloaded in 11 different languages: English, French, Italian, Persian, Polish, Portuguese, Urdu, Mandarin, Korean, Russian and Tagalog. Stories are available for children ages 0-12 with just the click of a button, so cuddle up and enjoy.
Also available through KidsSpace, Read-a-Story provides parents with a list of websites where children can read and/or watch stories online. One of my favourite websites on this list, Storyline Online, features videos of actors reading children's books. If you are in a crunch, and your child needs storytime ASAP, check out Read-a-Story today.
If your child is interested in telling their own stories, instead try our Tell-a-Story feature on KidsSpace. Children can take on one of four Story Challenges, or use our Story Builder to create their own. Once the story is complete, they can share it with their family or friends, and have the possibility of being featured on our website. With Tell-a-Story the possibilities are endless, which means you can finally take storytime to the next level!
Regardless of where you are, storytime is the perfect time to instill a love of reading in your child, and we are always here to help with that. For more tips and tricks on how to make reading a part of your everyday routine, check out our Ready for Reading site. There is so much to discover!