Everything You Ever Wanted (or didn’t want) to Know about Kits

Everything You Ever Wanted (or didn’t want) to Know about Kits


Many patrons love our Preschool and STEAM kits. They are perfect for grandparents wanting to entertain their grandkids during a weekend stay, homeschooled families who need hands-on learning tools, and parents who don’t want to spend money on toys that will be played with once or twice, only to be forgotten in the toy box until garage sale season. Whether you are a regular kit checker-outer or you are considering checking one out for the first time, here is everything you want to know (and maybe some things you don’t) about our kits.

Kits have a three week check out period, just like our books, but you can only check out two kits per library card. They also automatically renew twice as long as no other patrons have a hold on them. There are three age levels for our kits: Preschool (recommended for ages 3-5), Primary (recommended for ages 6-8), and STEAM (recommended for ages 8+). Preschool and Primary kits are located near the children’s desk in clear tote bags. STEAM kits can be found by the juvenile DVDs in plastic storage bins.

Some of our kits have dozens, or even hundreds of small parts that can be hard to keep track of. Here are our recommendations so that you do not lose or damage any of these pieces:


  • Wait until you get home to open up your kit. Kits cannot be used inside the library, and digging into them in the car is just asking for small pieces to get lost under your car seats.
  • Once you get home with your kit, designate a specific area for it to stay that is separate from your kids’ toys, like the dining room table or living room. This way, you won’t have to hunt down pieces throughout the whole house when it is time to return your kit.
  • Make sure that everything is in the kit when you first open it. If you notice anything is missing or broken, please call us and let us know so that we can try to track it down or replace it. This goes for items that wear out over time as well, like batteries and markers.
  • Supervise your children while they are using the kits, especially because some kits require help from an adult.
  • When you are ready to return your kit, make sure that everything is in the correct containers and bag. Our staff at the children’s desk have to count every single item (twice!) to make sure that it is all there for the next patron to use, and it makes our jobs so much easier when everything is already neatly organized and in its proper place. Count out the pieces yourself as well if you want to avoid making an additional trip to the library to return a missing item.


If your little ones do lose or damage an item from a kit, you will unfortunately be charged for the replacement. If it is a book, movie, CD, or other single item, you will be charged the full cost to replace said item. If the item is part of a larger set, like a board game or building set, you will be charged a percentage of the cost to replace the set. For example, if you lose one block out of a hundred building blocks, and it costs $20 to purchase the set, then you would be charged $0.20 for the single missing block rather than the full $20. If life happens and you don’t notice that something has gone missing from the kit before you return it, we will contact you and let you know what is missing, but we will not check in the kit. If we don’t hear back from you and the item becomes billed to your account, then we will remove the bill for the whole kit and instead charge you for the replacement of the missing item.

We love having kits available for you and your family to use, and we really love making sure that kits are complete and in working order so that your family can get the most enjoyment possible out of them. Please help us keep them that way so that other families can enjoy them as well! If you have any kit-related questions, comments, or concerns, please contact Lydia Gallagher, Youth Services Assistant Librarian, at gallagherl@mrrl.org or (573) 634-2464 ext. 241.