The pre-school period, or early years period, is the period between birth and embarking on compulsory education, and is the period in which the brain is at its most active and receptive. Children in the early years period benefit greatly, and in an enduring way, from learning, and demonstrate learning at a fast pace mentally, cognitively and linguistically. The social skills of becoming acquainted with script, and books, and developing an interest in reading, also occurs in this period. A child that receives a good education during this period will reap the rewards later on in life in terms of character development and academically.  

Due to the fact that pre-school compulsory education does not exist in Turkey, there is a need for education providers, that do not fall within the scope of formal private education, for children of all backgrounds to be able to benefit from. The institutions that first and foremost come to mind, are free of charge and state funded “Children’s Libraries.”

Children from different socio-economic backgrounds have access to children’s libraries and have dedicated spaces to them and programmes designed specifically for them. Through access to children’s libraries, the academic developmental indicators of any two children thus become more equal and a critical opportunity for structural fragilities in terms of inequality to be addressed presents itself. 

The theme of the 2nd International Children’s Libraries Symposium will be “The Early Years Period in Children’s Libraries” and will be hosted by the University of Marmara on 16th-19th October 2019 in Istanbul. The stakeholders of the symposium are as follows; The Information and Records Management Department, University of Marmara, Libraries and Publications General Directorate, Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality, Libraries and Museums Directorate .  

The main symposium sub-themes are as follows:

• THE EARLY YEARS PERIOD IN CHILDREN’S LIBRARIES

  • The provision of materials for children, parents and those who provide childcare services.
  • Creative programmes and drama activities
  • The child-book relationship and instilling the notion of the library in children 
  • Ensuring family participation
  • The physical characteristics of spaces devoted to early years children in children’s libraries
  • Deciding upon publications for early years children
  • Utilisation of children’s libraries in developmental process of early years period
  • Utilisation of children’s libraries in children acquiring reading as a habit.

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