Here at Agati, we talk a lot about designing spaces in a way that solves problems and addresses the needs of your patrons.
It should be the same when it comes to children’s library furniture.
Today we want to ask: In your library, are you approaching your space in this way for your children’s areas? Or just your adult areas?
Especially for public libraries, the reality is that kids are probably your most important patron in engaging families. As such, our kids deserve the best.
We have often seen libraries who are intentional about the furniture they put throughout their whole space, except when it comes to their children’s area. Whether they simply put adult furniture in kids’ spaces or buy lower quality furniture for those areas, the reality is that the quality of our children’s library furniture matters a lot.
When we right-size a space for kids, with the right level of quality, we communicate to them that they matter. We communicate that their needs matter. And we create a space that is meaningful for both children and families to spend their time in.
So what does right-sizing a children’s area look like? Here are a few ideas:
This example is made up of our Children’s Manifest Workstation and Etta Children’s Chair.
Whether the workstations are used on schoolwork, browsing for library resources, computer games, or for crafts, creating a dedicated area like this for children is a great way to practically support children in a right-sized way.
The Pod Jr
With the Pod Jr, we are bringing our award-winning POD design, and making it available for young kids. The goal of this design is to reduce visual distractions to improve both focus and learning outcomes.
Steph Reed, Autism Specialist Teacher and Consultant, says, “In my personal focus of working with children with attention and sensory challenges (such as autism or ADHD), the enclosed panels on the POD Jr ensure immediate visual stimulation is minimized, providing a calm area to focus and enabling learning to take place.”
Multiple-Height Children’s and Youth Chairs
We love this example from our work with the Free Library of Philadelphia for its representation of helping children feel like a space is “theirs.” The size of the tables, bookshelves, and chairs work together to create an environment that is fun, special, and intentional.
No matter what your goals are for your children’s areas, the children’s library furniture you use truly does matter. We want to encourage you to approach these areas with the same intentionality and strategy you would your adult spaces, and see connection with children and their families deepen as a result.