Storyteller Miss Cindy (Cindy McGuire) brings out puppet, Gabriel the Camel, for the children's story hour at Van Noy Library at Fort Belvoir May 23. The story hour is Wednesdays and Thursdays from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Families at Fort Belvoir, with children age five and younger, who are looking for a fun and interactive activity to take their children to can attend Van Noy Library's "story hour" every Wednesday and Thursday from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m.
Each session, children and their Families listen to stories on subjects like balloons, dogs, cats and other children's favorites.
"It's a nice getaway for the Families," said Katie Buxbaum, Van Noy Library, library technician. "It's a little thing for the moms and dads to come with their children and be entertained by a story."
No pre-registration is required for Families to come to story time.
Story hour is a chance for young children to get away from their siblings and be around children they don't know, according to Buxbaum. The interaction is positive because it gives children a chance to work on their social skills before they go to pre-school or kindergarten.
"It's a chance for children to be in an environment with children they don't know and may not be the same age," said Buxbaum. "I've seen the interaction make a difference with children who aren't yet at the age they can go to school."
The importance of story time to transitioning to a new installation is not lost on Buxbaum who grew up a military child. She said story time is one way Families meet other Families when they first arrive at a new installation.
"When you are new to the installation, the first place a lot of Families go is the Library for information on the base, but it's also a great place to meet other Families," said Buxbaum. "I've seen Families make play dates after a couple of story time sessions."
The way a story teller tells a story factors into whether or not children interact with one another, said Buxbaum. If the story teller can get the children interested in the story being told, it can cause them to speak to one another even if they are familiar with the story, according to Buxbaum.
"I've seen story tellers say to children 'What do you think is going to happen next, or, do you see what they're looking for?'" said Buxbaum. "Some of the stories, the children know word for word. But, if the story teller engages the audience, the children get really excited."
Since summer break is starting soon for school-age children, Buxbaum said she isn't going to turn away a child over the age of five that wants to participate in story time.
"I've had grandmas come to story time," said Buxbaum. "Story time is universal and ageless."

Page last updated Fri May 31st, 2013 at 15:12