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Children and young people's library service

Pages in Children and young people's library service

  1. Children and young people's library service
  2. Bookstart Bear Club
  1. Class visit
  2. Homework help

We offer a wide range of services for children and young people, from books to enjoy to books to help with homework. All libraries have collections of books for children from board books and picture books for the very young, to books for teenagers and graphic novels. Central Library also has a dedicated teen zone.

Libraries have collections of coursework and homework books as well as free access to computers to help with homework needs.

Activities take place in all libraries on a weekly basis - with special events such as the Summer Reading Scheme around school holiday times. Look out for storytimes, crafts, arts workshops, quizzes and competitions.

Visits from school classes and playgroups are also welcomed.

Books, E-books and CDs

You can borrow up to 20 books, and keep them for up to four weeks or you can download up to four e-books. Bring books back on or before the date stamped in the book. You can have your books stamped again if nobody else wants them. If you are under eight you won't have to pay fines if the books are returned late - but don't forget other people may want to read them.

There are all sorts of books in the library, including:

  • books for babies
  • adventure stories
  • funny stories
  • information books
  • books for mums and dads

CDs are also available - you have to pay to borrow these except for story tapes for children, which are free.

Online resources

You can access "Britannica Junior for ages 5 to 11" and "Britannica Student for ages 12 to 18" online using your library card.

Some libraries have computers in their children's sections and you can book up to one hour for free. All libraries have computer learning facilities that children can use. Children can also use the internet, but they must have signed permission from a parent or carer and there are other safeguards. Computer sessions can be booked by asking at the library or by phone or you can book a computer online. To do this you need to have your library card number (which you will find under the barcode) and your PIN.

If you do not have a PIN, staff at your local library will provide you with one in person or by e-mail once you have proved your identity. You can change your PIN if you wish by asking in the library. Your PIN is for your security. Please do not tell it to anyone else, as they will be able to get access to your library details.

Sharing books is a vital part of learning to read.

Top tips for reading with your child:

  • Books can be shared at any time - not just at bedtime!
  • Your child may want to read to you.
  • Read aloud together - allow your child to lead the speed of reading.
  • Take turns - you read a section, your child reads a section. With young children it is a good idea to follow the writing with your finger, making sure no words are hidden.
  • Help your child when they get stuck.
  • Always be positive.
  • Don't rush your child.
  • The pictures will help.
  • Reading the rest of the sentence may help.
  • It is important to keep the flow, so help your child, then move on.
  • If there are too many difficult words, read the book to your child yourself.

Helpful hints

  • Encourage your child to choose his or her own books.
  • Don't worry if they keep choosing the same favourites.
  • Don't put pressure on your child to get "harder" books or say "that's too easy".
  • Reading should be fun.
  • Find a quiet, comfortable place with no distractions. You can't compete with the television!
  • Reading at bedtime is a pleasant way to end the day but only for as long as your child wants.
  • Encourage your child to guess what's going to happen next.
  • Set a good example by reading yourself, and by choosing books at the library!

For more helpful hints and tips, BookTrust have provided this leaflet which is also available in different languages.

Libraries - Children and Young People’s Co-ordinator


Tel: 024 7683 2552

Floor 9
One Friargate

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