Thursday, March 23 saw the latest session of After School with Darlene at Stettler Public Library. Children in attendance read the story “Everybody Sleeps but Not Fred” and then spent time building their own dreamcatchers to explore the themes of sleep and dreaming.
After School with Darlene is a bimonthly drop-in program for children of writing age that’s based around reading and imagination.
“The premise is to introduce [the children] to a new book,” said Stettler Public Library Program Coordinator Darlene Philpot, who runs the after school program.
For each program, Philpot brings a new story book along with an activity related to the theme of the book. The activities can involve making crafts, drawing pictures, or writing stories.
“We want [the children] thinking out of the box,” Philpot said. “We want them creating for themselves. It’s a time for them to let their creative juices unleash and make friends.”
The program is designed for children ages six and up who are able to write by themselves, but younger children are also welcome when accompanied by an adult.
Hosting the after school program at the library is convenient for families that might have older children taking part in sports at the recreation centre, Philpot explained.
It’s also a good opportunity to showcase all that the library has to offer.
“A lot of our kids were quite surprised to find out that we do actually rent board games and we do actually rent video games,” Philpot said.
For children who don’t have a video game system at home, there’s even a PS4 and an Xbox at the library that they can use.
After School with Darlene will continue on April 6 with a reading of the story “If You Ever Had a Gryphon.”
After the story, children will “piece and part together our own special animal,” Philpot noted. “We’re going to draw and describe our own pets and what their magic talents may be, because that’s what this book is about.”