Library services for under fives
All libraries are now open. Please check our opening times before you travel to a library as they are subject to change.
During our opening times you can:
- browse and choose your own items to borrow
- return and renew items at the self-service kiosks
- collect items you have pre-ordered via our Select and Collect service
- use a computer
- we are not currently charging fines for the late return of items
Check our COVID-19 update for details of our safety measures in libraries and what we request from you when visiting us.
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Activities and events for under-fives
We are currently running a programme of online interactive events for babies and toddlers. As we gradually reintroduce services, we are also starting a small programme of face to face activities following Covid-19 safety precautions.
For the latest information on our activities please visit our Library events for under fives webpage.
To receive regular updates on events directly to your inbox, you can join our mailing list to receive our library newsletter for children and families.
We also have many activity sessions for under-fives available on our YouTube channel
Library resources for under-fives
To borrow resources from Barnet Libraries, you will need a library card. If you are not already a member, you can join the library online and become a member straight away.
We have increased our stock of eBooks and eAudiobooks suitable for young children and these are available for you to borrow.
To support children's reading and life in general, we are developing a series of booklists
Bookstart is a national scheme bringing books and small children together.
Baby Bookstart packs
Every baby born to a family who live in Barnet is entitled to a free Baby Bookstart pack.
Your health visitor or staff at your baby clinic usually have a supply of Bookstart Baby Packs for new parents, so ask next time you visit.
If you live in Barnet, you can also collect a Bookstart Baby Pack from any Barnet Library. Please check our opening hours before leaving home, as these are currently changing on a regular basis.
Our short videos will help you get started with your Bookstart pack:
Don’t forget to join the library when you visit to collect your Bookstart pack. You can then borrow some more books to share with your baby.
Bookstart treasure packs
Treasure packs are normally distributed by pre-school settings and nursery classes. Children in their pre-reception year will receive a pack during the academic year 2021/2022.
Special Bookstart packs are available for children with additional needs
Contact Bookstart@barnet.gov.uk if you have a child who is deaf, has a visual impairment or has disabilities which impact on or delay the development of their fine motor skills.
Nurseries, pre-schools and schools
Our specialist early years team normally offer a rhyme and story based activity service to nurseries, pre-schools and schools in Barnet. This is a professionally delivered service and charges do apply.
At present we are unable to offer this service but please contact us if you are interested in joining an online event specifically for nurseries.
Our specialist early years team normally runs training courses for teachers, early years practitioners and library staff. This service is currently suspended, but contact us to ask any questions, email Bookstart
Early Years and Bookstart Coordinator