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In Bergen, Passaic libraries, languages add diversity to story time

“They may look like the story times that have long been a mainstay of local libraries and their outreach to children. But listen closely and there’s an unmistakable difference. In Leonia, the story is “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” but the librarian is reading it in Korean. In Palisades Park, kids are urged to enunciate letter sounds encountered in a story by repeating the “aaaah” in “agua” and the “l” in “lechero.” And in Clifton, there are plans to start a story time in Gujarati, the language of a section of the Indian subcontinent. The programs have the same goal as the ones established long ago in English: developing young children’s literacy skills and promoting language development through books, discussions and songs. The goal, experts and library staff said, is to establish a foundation for future success in reading and in school.” (via

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