FAQ – Children’s Services

When can my child get a Fairfield Public Library Card?

Your child can get a Library Card as soon as you’re ready for them to get a Library Card. Come to the Children’s Information Desk or the Circulation Desk to fill out a registration form. The parent or legal guardian needs to show proof of ID and Fairfield residency, as well as, sign the form to be the responsible party for all materials checked out on the child’s card. Please see the Library Card page for more information about obtaining a Library Card for your child or yourself.

We encourage all the children of Fairfield to get their Library card, so sign up today!

Do you have toys and games in the Children’s Room?

The Children’s Room has been designed to foster imaginative and creative play. With puppets, puzzles, costumes, and more, the Children’s Room is more than just books. However, we do ask that these toys and materials stay in the Children’s Room for every child to enjoy during their visit.

What is the Little Farm?

The Little Farm is a dedicated area within the Children’s Room at Main Library for babies and toddlers under the age of 3 years old… 0 months – 35 months. With soft mats, soft toys, and board books, this area is especially safe for our tiniest patrons. Parents and caregivers must remain in the Little Farm at all times.

The different neighborhoods are designed to be developmentally appropriate for different aged children. Children who are 3 years old and up can present a hazard to babies and toddlers who are exploring the area. Also, the mats are not made for older, heavier children who are jumping, climbing, kicking and bouncing on them.

If you have an older child/sibling, please understand our policy concerning the Little Farm. Only if the parent or caregiver can ensure that the preschool age child (3 years old and up) can sit next to the adult or play gently alongside the baby and/or toddler can we allow them in the Little Farm.

It is up to the judgment of the Children’s Services Staff to decide appropriate or inappropriate behavior in the Little Farm. It is also at the discretion of the Staff to ask parents and/or children to leave the Little Farm and continue their play in other areas of the Children’s Room if their child is not acting in a safe manner around babies and toddlers.

What Children’s Programs do you have at the Library?

The Children’s Room has programs for children ages 0-12. Please see the Events Calendar for specific dates and times of upcoming programs, visit the Children’s Events page for information on weekly programs, or pick up a printed calendar for all seasonal Programs and Descriptions.

What is the difference between “drop-in” and “registration only” programs?

Drop-in programs do not require advance registration. However, parents or caregivers must pick up a ticket prior to the start of the program. We begin handing out tickets 30 minutes before the start of any program. Due to limited space, tickets are handed out to the first 20 children. Tickets are given out on a first-come, first-serve basis and programs can get full.

Registration only programs require advance registration online, in-person, or by telephone before the start of the program. Registration start dates for programs vary by age and program. Please call the Children’s Information Desk or visit the Events Calendar for more information.

How can my child use a computer in the Children’s Room?

A Children’s Library Card is needed to log on to the Game and Internet computers in the Children’s Room. If your child does not have a Library Card, please visit the Children’s Information Desk to log on with a guest pass. Children under the age of 12 have priority on all computers in the Children’s Room.

If all computers are full, please use the Reservation System to secure a computer for your child.

Oh No! My child had an accident… what do I do?

We understand that children are always learning new skills and sometimes, accidents happen. From learning to walk to potty training to tummy aches, we anticipate a few mishaps along the way! However, please notify a Children’s Services Staff Member as soon as the accident happens to ensure proper care is taken in cleaning the area.

Do you have a Study Room available in the Children’s Room?

The Main Library does have a Study Room. The room can be booked through the Children’s Information Desk and can only be reserved the day of the reservation. Patrons must show identification at the Children’s Information Desk. Priority for use of the study room goes to children under the age of 12. The room can be used for up to one hour.

Other Children’s Room Rules and Policies

We do allow light food and drink in the Children’s Room, but please be respectful of the space and eat only small snacks in designated areas. Please do not eat or drink while using technology.

Children under the age of 12 are not allowed in the Children’s Room without parent or caregiver supervision. Please refer to the Unattended Child Policy for more information.

Please be considerate of others and use inside voices and remember to walk in the Children’s Room.

Children’s Services Staff Members reserve the right to ask any child to correct improper behavior.

I’m a teacher. How can the Library help me?

Visit the Educators page for our Menu of Services and more information.

Unattended Child Policy

Library Service to children, parents, and adults working with children is an important part of the Library’s mission.

It is not the Library’s function or purpose to provide supervision or care for children while parents or other supervising adults are outside the Children’s Room and/or the Library proper. Parents should be aware that the Library is a public building open to all individuals. The following policy has been designed to communicate the Library’s concern for the safety and welfare of the children it serves.

1. Parents and guardians are, at all times, responsible for the conduct and safety of their children on Library premises. They must provide appropriate supervision based on the ages, abilities and the levels of responsibility of their children.

a. Children under age twelve should not be left unattended in the Children’s Room at any time. If the adult in charge of a child under age twelve wishes to go to another area of the library for materials (or to check out materials) the child should accompany the adult.

b. Children, like all library users, are required to respect Library property, and act in a manner appropriate to the use and function of the Library. Parents or guardians of children who are not using the Library appropriately, or who require excessive staff attention or supervision, may be asked to monitor their children more closely.

At closing time, during power failures, or other emergencies, departure from the building is necessary. Children left alone in the Library, or on Library grounds could be vulnerable. Every effort will be made to contact parents prior to closing. Two staff members will remain with a child left unattended at closing time. If the child is not picked up after 5 minutes, the police will be called. Staff members will wait with the child until the police arrive. Under no circumstances will a staff member offer to drive the child home.

2. In accordance with Connecticut State Law, “Any parent, guardian or person having custody or control, or providing supervision, of any child under the age of twelve years knowingly leaves such child unsupervised in a place of public accommodation…that presents a substantial risk to the child’ s health or safety,” may be guilty of a misdemeanor. (Public Act NO. 97-298)

More FAQ’s and answers concerning Fairfield Public Library policies and procedures can be found here.