Back to top

PlayLab Frequently Asked Questions

PlayLab FAQ

What ages are supported in the PlayLab?

  • The PlayLab was designed with a focus on developmental support for ages birth to five.  However, kids of all ages are welcome to play and explore throughout the space. The PlayLab is set within Pinney’s children’s area which includes a variety of spaces suitable for young children, older siblings, and entire families.

Why play? How does play support literacy development?

  • The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) states that “Play is not frivolous; it is brain building.” Developing language and literacy skills begins at birth through everyday loving interactions, such as sharing books, telling stories, singing songs, talking to one another, and playing! 
  • Play is essential to how children learn to socialize, to think, to solve problems, and have fun, and is recognized as an essential and critical part of all children’s development. Through play, children interact and explore the world, and different types of play are needed to fully engage a child’s social, emotional, physical, and intellectual development. While playing, kids develop pre-literacy and executive function skills and practice language and literacy skills. 

What programs will you be offering? 

  • We are excited to hear from all members of our community about the library programs and services of greatest interest in order to ensure that our programming models are built from community input and that our resources are used equitably. Let our staff know what programs you are most interested in!​

Why is this called a lab? 

  • The PlayLab is a place for discovery. Children are invited to explore and figure out how the world works through play and families are encouraged to observe and be surprised by the incredible abilities of their children.

What can my family do at the PlayLab? 

  • Families are welcome to visit the PlayLab to browse, play, read, and work any time during Pinney’s open hours. There will be a rotating collection of open-ended play materials in the space at all times for your children to explore and discover new possibilities. In addition, our Patio will be available for outdoor play during much of the year, with additional play materials. All materials in the space are available for families to use and many materials can be checked out with a library card. Families can also participate in a free program. Check the online calendar or ask a staff member about programs. A family study room space is available if patrons are looking for a quieter, more contained space to use. Please ask at the information desk to use this room.

What can my early childhood group do at the PlayLab? Do I need to make a reservation?

  • Groups are welcome to visit the PlayLab during Pinney’s open hours and are invited to attend our public youth programs. If you are planning a field trip to the PlayLab and are interested in specific materials, additional services, or in using any of our other spaces, please contact the library ahead of time to schedule a visit at We also offer classroom library cards if groups are interested in checking out library materials. For more information visit our educator website.

Can I have my child’s birthday party at Pinney Library?

  • We do not have rental or meeting space available for private events. 

Return to the PlayLab