SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ - The South Brunswick Public Library has continued to provide daily storytime sessions for children during the COVID-19 Pandemic since the facility closed in Mid March indefinitely. The children’s staff at the library has been uploading story tome sessions to the South Brunswick Public Library official youtube page from Monday through Friday. This past April Fool’s day, children were treated with a reading of Dr. Suess’s “The Sneeches”
Rosemary Gohd is the head of Publicity and Marketing for the South Brunswick Public Library. According to her, The Library has been quick to address the needs of all South Brunswick children at this time. To do so, the library began to put out storytime sessions in Spanish and American sign language. The library has put out other content for children including videos on crafts, cooking, and games.
The storytime sessions are done by Matt Kirshner, the head of the children’s service. With two young children at home, Kirshner had a wide selection of children’s books to choose from. He has been filming all of his broadcasts from his home in Pennsylvania.
“We were big on the idea that “the library extends beyond the building”, so this was just another opportunity to reach out to our community where they are.” Kirshner said in an email, “The remote storytime was an easy instant idea, and it was just a natural transition for us to continue reading stories, singing songs, and teaching the kids through the lens of a camera rather than in-person.”
As of now, videos of storytime sessions have over 2,200 views on youtube. The Library is currently rolling out a new weekly science show and a Baby Storytime program sometime next week. Kirshner often gives children challenges every week, such as asking local kids to draw themselves as superheroes. This allows children to get involved and be creative, according to Kirshner.
The library is also focusing on content to teenagers and adults while at home, by providing virtual services along with their usual digital services. These services include ebooks, audiobooks, online tutoring, live media streaming, digital magazines and newspapers, and more.
The library is also responsible for making the official South Brunswick Website for COVID-19 at southbrunswickcovid.info which combines information provided by the Township, Police Department, and School District. The Website was created by the staff at the library and made possible with funding from the South Brunswick Public Library Foundation, according to Gohd.
All of the content being put out by the library can be found on their Facebook page or the official Library Youtube channel.
“We want to wish everyone a safe quarantine. We want everyone to know that we have all the resources needed to help your stay-at-home pass by pleasantly as possible. Please visit us or contact us with your questions, so we can help you at www.sbpl.info” said Gohd in an email.