PRESS RELEASE

City of Long Beach 
Public Information Office
411 W. Ocean Blvd, 
Long Beach, CA 90802

8/25/2020
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEPress Release # 082520
Subject:
Long Beach Public Library Introduces Virtual Early Literacy Program
Contact:
Cynthia Bautista
Youth and Family Services Senior Librarian
Long Beach Public Library
Cynthia.Bautista@lbpl.org
562.570.6645




Long Beach, CA - The Long Beach Public Library (LBPL) is launching a virtual version of its early literacy program, Dive into Reading, which will kickoff live on LBPL’s Facebook page at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Aug. 29. 
 
Dive into Reading, the library’s literacy initiative for families with children ages 5 and younger, will encourage families to read 1,000 books together before their child enters kindergarten. The families will be able to track their progress through Beanstack, the library’s digital reading platform. 
 
“As learning moves online during the pandemic, our public libraries are making learning to read even more fun by offering an interactive online version of our early literacy program,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “I’m happy to see the program will continue while library branches remain closed due to this public health crisis.”
 
Dive Into Reading is a self-paced challenge where families can earn prizes and participate in educational events while meeting their 1,000 book goal. Since launching in April 2018, with funding from the LBPL Foundation, 736 families have participated, and 56 families have completed the challenge. 
 
“The goal of Dive Into Reading is to foster early literacy skills that will prepare children to enter kindergarten ready to learn,” said Glenda Williams, Director of Library Services. “Reading together helps promote parent-child bonding and build confidence and positive experiences that create lifelong learners.”  
 
Saturday’s Dive Into Reading Virtual Launch Party will include a craft demonstration and a concert by bilingual children’s singer/songwriter, Nathalia. Children can follow along with the craft demonstration by picking up a free craft kit from Billie Jean King Main Library (200 W. Broadway) from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. from Aug. 25 through Saturday, Aug. 29 while supplies last. Craft pick-up will take place outside the library’s main entrance with physical distancing protocols in place. Face coverings are required of library patrons who wish to pick up the kits.
 
Families can visit longbeach.beanstack.org to enroll in the program. Those who are currently enrolled in Dive Into Reading should also visit the website to enroll in the online version. For more information on this or other library programs and services, residents may visit www.lbpl.org or call (562) 570-7500 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesdays through Saturdays. 

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, LBPL has continued to serve Long Beach residents online by providing e-books and audiobooks, job development resources, homework assistance, virtual story times and makerspace instruction videos. 

For the latest information on COVID-19, with details on all that the City of Long Beach is doing to keep its residents safe, visit: longbeach.gov/COVID19 and follow @LongBeachCity on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. 

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