All children deserve the joy of reading and the skills in life that literacy brings. Colorado Libraries for Early Literacy is passionately committed to strengthening children’s literacy through library services and community advocacy.
In January 2008, staff from more than a dozen Colorado public libraries and the Colorado State Library joined together and began working to develop a comprehensive approach to delivering and supporting early literacy services statewide.
- Educate and train library staff in providing early literacy story times for children and caregivers.
- Increase awareness of the importance of early literacy to all communities in Colorado.
- Cooperate with other state and national agencies involved with early literacy.
- Promote the role of libraries in providing early literacy experiences.
The Training Committee launched this website in the fall of 2008 to bring together information about Colorado library early literacy programs and services and to provide tools and resources for library staff. In September 2009 we redesigned the website to include a blog, and extended our web presence to Facebook and Twitter.
In the fall of 2009, CLEL was awarded an LSTA grant to create videos and a website to share rhymes, songs, and early literacy tips with parents, caregivers and librarians. The result is StoryBlocks.org! We will be expanding the site with more videos as funding allows.
Training and Presentations
CLEL members are frequent trainers for Colorado State Library Youth Services workshops, and regularly provide workshops and presentations at library and early childhood conferences.
Two members of our Steering Committee serve as advisors to a generous Institute of Museum and Library Services grant awarded to the University of Denver's Library and Information Sciences program. The purpose of the grant is to develop learning service projects and curriculum for a fellowship of graduate students who will graduate as Early Childhood Librarians!
Membership in CLEL is open to anyone involved with children, libraries, or early childhood education who supports our mission statement. Our activities are directed by a Steering Committee appointed from general membership. The Steering Committee currently serves as an advisory group to the Colorado State Library. There are seven standing committees: Advocacy, Training, Communications, Annual Meeting, Grants/Fundraising, Special Projects, and Membership, which work to carry out the goals of the organization. CLEL members may serve on any of the standing committees. Our bylaws can be viewed here. Minutes from the October 2012 steering committee meeting are here.
CLEL is working hard to strengthen children's literacy through library services and community advocacy. Your membership will connect you to a network of Colorado library staff who are committed to making a difference in their communities, and who can help you make a difference in yours. If you'd like to join CLEL, please fill out our Membership Form.
An annual meeting of the full CLEL membership is held on the Thursday before the Colorado Association of Libraries' annual conference, usually in November or December. For the minutes of the 2010 Annual Meeting, click here.