Sewickley library helps children get set for kindergarten

| Wednesday, July 31, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

Cindy Muders said her 5-year-old daughter Violet told her she didn't think she would be able to go to Sewickley Public Library's kindergarten prep program.

“She said she thought she was too shy,” said Muders, of Aleppo, who was relaxing at the library last month while her daughter took her first class in another room there.

But it didn't take Violet long to join in with the other children as they sang, learned rhymes and answered questions about the stories children's librarian Molly Troy read to them.

The program formed earlier this year after library staff decided mimic a similar program offered for pre-school students, Troy said.

Classes center mostly around reading books to about a small group of children, but lessons on preparing for kindergarten are added, Troy said.

Each classes' theme focuses around the color of the rainbow, Troy said.

Along with teaching colors, the program also helps children practice their listening and sitting skills and learning to interact with others, she said.

Lisa Floro likes the program because her daughter Mia, 5, has run into friends she met at preschool and is getting used to some of what she might be doing in kindergarten, she said.

“I just want her to get used to idea that there will be different kids in her class than there were in preschool,” said Floro, of Bell Acres.

She said she has tried to prepare Mia for kindergarten by reading with her, teaching her to tell time, going over letter sounds and counting — things she knows are covered in kindergarten from previous experience with her son, Tommaso, 9.

Even outside of the library program, Quaker Valley kindergarten teacher Annette Matthews said parents can do things similar to what Floro is doing with Mia to prepare her for a new environment.

“One of the biggest things parents can do to help their child, is teach them to write their name,” Matthews said. “They write their names on everything.”

Joanne Barron is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-324-1406 or

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