The COVID-19 pandemic has moved children’s story time from the library mat to social media.
Librarian Kate Reynolds has been reading to children in live streaming sessions on the Windsor Public Library Facebook page since April.
Reynolds – or Miss Kate, as her audience calls her – has two live Facebook sessions on Monday evening and Wednesday morning. In addition to the stories, those who log on can hear songs from Reynolds, a trained singer.
Reynolds, who works at the Riverside branch, was hosting story time in person during the days leading up to the pandemic, but library branches are currently closed. They remain open for curbside pickup and access to public computers only.
âObviously I miss having kids there,â Reynolds said.
But the live streaming format also allows for some interaction, like viewers’ requests for songs.
It looks more organic when you know they’re actually watching in real time.– Librarian Kate Reynolds, Windsor Public Library
There are usually around four or five families tuned in, and more who watch the video after the live broadcast ends. The service is free and does not require a library card.
Reynolds said she tries to showcase her “absolutely favorite” books.
âChildren’s books change very quickly, so I always try to expose families to new voices that they might not have heard otherwise,â she said.
She also makes children’s videos on her personal YouTube page, including one aimed at teaching children about masks.
WATCH: Miss Kate opens up about her love for story time and singing