County Examples

Play Smart with Toddlers

Chesterfield County , Va.

For libraries that serve neighborhoods with a large population of families with young children, Chesterfield County Public Library constructed a new and exciting program that supports early literacy and child development. The Play Smart with Toddlers program provides a comfortable atmosphere for parents to enjoy a session of play with their child while learning from experts about how play supports their child’s development and encourages early literacy skills. Children improve their socialization skills in a safe environment, while parents connect with community professionals with various areas of expertise related to children aged 0-3. Library staff identify and coordinate the experts through partnerships with county departments and other local and regional organizations. This monthly program is unusual for a library literacy program in that it doesn’t stick to the importance of “reading”. Staff and partners addresses a whole rang range of learning opportunities for parents in one session. Chesterfield parents can come to the library to learn parenting skills and make connections with various early childhood agencies, where they can find parenting information and support. The children benefit from a program that allows them access to developmentally appropriate play and social interactions with other children. This network of care is a holistic approach to the early learning needs of our children, and to supporting our families and caregivers.

Ms. Carolyn Sears 
Assistant Director of Library Services

About 100 Brilliant Ideas at Work

Counties play an essential role in keeping America’s communities healthy, vibrant and safe. With public and private sector partners, we pursue innovative approaches to advance public health and well-being, protect public safety and foster economic strength and resiliency. Counties anticipate and adapt to challenges by thinking outside the box and demonstrating local leadership that makes a difference in people’s lives.

Under the leadership of NACo Immediate Past President Bryan Desloge, NACo embarked on an initiative to identify and share 100 examples of visionary county leadership that results in improving residents’ quality of life. Through this initiative, NACo worked with county leaders and partners to share best practices that bolster our nation’s ability to thrive county by county.

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