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A Resource for Libraries

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Kids and their parents at the library Parents playing peek-a-boo A parent reading a book with a child Kid playing at the library

What is ELF?

Early Learning with Families or ELF is a statewide initiative created by the California State Library to support the ongoing evolution of library services to young children (0–5), their families and caregivers. It is based on Goals & Values that embrace the ability of libraries to support and nurture the formative development of children and families.

Through the initiative, libraries have transformed how they organize their collections, create welcoming spaces, and offer enriching and developmentally appropriate programs for young children and their families. To leverage and expand this important work, libraries have also brokered collaborations with other community organizations and agencies that share similar early childhood goals – increasing the reach and impact of what any organization can achieve alone.

kids in the library