March 2021
Imagination Library eNews
Information and resources for Imagination Library families
As of March 2021, 📚 819,102 books have been delivered to 15,229 children in Erie County.💯💰100% of Imagination Library program funds are raised by support to United Way of Erie County. Learn More and register an Erie County child under the age of 5 in your life:
Do you know someone who may want to register a child for United Way's Imagination Library in Erie County?
It's simple! Forward this newsletter or share this link.
Raising Kids to Be Smart About Money
Young minds are programmed to absorb and copy the behaviors around them, which means the sooner you instill proper money management skills, the more prone your kids are to become mature and responsible stewards of their own cash-flow in the future.

The following kid-approved strategies help you teach the core tenets of being financially savvy; in terms they’ll understand and appreciate.

THANK YOU, Imagination Library Focus Group Participants!
In February's issue, we asked for interested families to participate in our Imagination Library focus groups!

These focus groups were the last component in a special research project, determining the impact Imagination Library has on childhood literacy in Erie County.

We want to say THANK YOU to all of those participants for helping to identify barriers preventing student and family success. We could not reach our mission to crush
poverty without the input of Erie County
families. You all rock!
Erie's Future Fund Scholarships Available
Did you know United Way supports Erie's Future Fund Scholarships? Administered by our friends at Early Connections, Erie’s Future Fund financially assists families in preparing their children for kindergarten by providing a scholarship to attend quality programs throughout Erie County.

If your child has up to two years before they enter kindergarten and qualifies for the Erie’s Future Fund scholarship, they will be able to attend an approved high-quality Early Childhood Education Program for 3 full days or 5 half-days a week! Learn more at or contact Kim Beers, Scholarship Director at (814) 874-0144 ext. 15.
Imagination Library Celebrates Diversity
According to Little Free Library's Read in Color initiative, less than 25% of children’s books depict non-white characters. We created a booklist to showcase these stories and increase awareness around diversity. By doing so, we can teach future generations to be inclusive of everyone's identity despite their differences.
Read in Color works to showcase books that ensure ALL children can find themselves in the stories they read and amplify their voices.
Imagination Library Book Spotlight: Spend It!
A charming introduction to simple money concepts in which a bunny learns he can't buy everything he wants with his allowance!

Sonny gets three whole carrots a week for his allowance and wants to buy everything with it! But he soon discovers his money won't go that far, and his mom tells him he needs to make some choices. That doesn't sound like much fun to Sonny, especially when he learns that the bouncy castle he's been eyeing goes for ONE HUNDRED carrots. Ridiculous! But eventually, after a little math and a little more thinking, he has a blast discovering what's really important to him and worth spending his carrots on.

Accompanying Activity for this Book: DIY Spend, Save, Give Jars
Money is such an abstract concept for young children. Spending and saving doesn't mean much to a three year old! However, this month's activity allows your child to create their own spend, save, give jars (with adult help of course!) which offers them the opportunity to watch their savings grow.

Erie Family Center's Diaper Depot
Thanks to support from United Way of Erie County, the Erie Family Center's Diaper Depot is now countywide and expanding! Be sure to check out the Erie Family Center for complete information on upcoming Diaper Depot distribution events. Learn more
Macaroni Kid: 10 Reasons to Celebrate Your Family In March
In March, we have LOTS of events to celebrate! Not only is march International Women's Month, it also holds special days like St. Patty's, Single Parents day, World Down Syndrome day, and many more.

Check out this article from our friends over at Macaroni Kid Erie and don't miss out on this month's important dates! Learn more
Money for Little Minds
Finances for Kids from Sesame Street Workshop

Join Elmo as he learns how to make good choices; what items have value; and spending, sharing, saving. This link includes a series of videos and podcast episodes! Learn more
Power Kids: Pennsylvania's Electronic Library
We're always searching for extra resources that keep us learning and having fun! Through this interactive library, families can discover together new languages, different cultures, history, online safety and much more.

Macaroni Kid: 28 Ways to Celebrate Black American's Impact
During Black History Month, we taught our little one's about diversity and the importance of black American's in our communities.

Now that February is over, it's time to continue the celebration! With these 28 ways to celebrate black American's, we encourage families to praise peers for who they are on the inside and not just by the color of one's skin. Black lives are to be recognized and honored all year round. Learn more
At-Home St. Patty's Day Activities
St. Patrick's Day is Wednesday, March 17. Try these 8 simple St. Patty's Day activities with your little ones.
Upcoming Free Events & Storytimes
While staying home, tune into these FREE community and online offerings

Read Across America Day
March 2 is Read Across America Day and we're celebrating locally with our #ReadAcrossErieCounty Youtube series! Join local guests as they share their favorite books and emphasize the importance of reading aloud with our growing youth. Learn more

St. Patty's Day Storytime
Join Athy Library's storyteller for Michelle for a special St. Patrick's Day Storytime on March 15 from 12:00 to 12:30PM and learn how Saint Patrick become the patron Saint of Ireland! Register here

ExpERIEnce My Home
ExpERIEnce My Home is a new video series created by our friends at the expERIEnce Children's Museum. Check their Youtube channel every Wednesday and Saturday morning at 9AM to meet the newest Erie County family and learn about their culture! Learn more

Eat Better for Less With Erie County Public Library
Join Nutrition Education Advisor Kim Munden, beginning March 4 from 5:30 to 7:30PM, for a series of lessons and activities centered around eating healthy on a budget. Geared towards families receiving food assistance, this series teaches food safety, meal planning, and much more, on a limited income. Learn more

Free At-Home Fun: Sunday Craft with the Erie Art Museum
Enjoy a free craft every Sunday with the Erie Art Museum. Learn more

Drop in and Discover at Asbury Woods
Looking for something wild to do? Nature comes alive Saturday mornings at Asbury Woods. Stop in each week for a new hands on, minds on, staff facilitated educational activity that are free and open to the public. Each week offers a new experience to discover. Pre-registration required. Learn more

Curious Kids ONLINE: Let's Be Scientists
We're learning about science on Wednesday, March 3 from 1:30 to 2:30PM with Curious Kids! This virtual event will have your 3 to 5 year old discovering science in an interactive way. Listen to a scientific story time followed by a hands on activity. Register here

Curbside Pickup at Erie County Public Library Branches
Don't forget! ECPL has free curbside pickup for books! Reserve your books through their website. Don't have a library card? Sign up for one using the link! Learn more

Stay Connected!

Great information, resources, reading guides and tips are shared on the Imagination Library for Erie County Facebook page. Be sure to Like and Follow the page to stay up to date and informed!

Important Information

Need help? Don't know where to turn? Just dial United Way's 211 helpline. A trained operator will connect you with information about financial assistance, counseling, food/clothing/shelter, health services, substance abuse and much more! It's always free and confidential. You can also text your zip code to 898-211 to be helped by 211.
If you are not receiving books, or have a specific question about the Imagination Library please contact Joanna Peters via email or phone (814) 456-2937 ext. 233.