As we continue with our 5 Days of Tips for Homeschool Parents, today I’m going to talk about How to Maximize Your Library Use.
Homeschoolers and the local library seem to be joined at the hip. However, whether you are a homeschooler or not, you might be surprised at some of the great resources and programs your local library has that can be a great help to you and your family.
Though obviously, resources and programs differ from town to town, state to state, and country to country, from personal experience, here are some resources and programs that you might love at your library (or at least look for and try out).
How to Maximize Your Library Use for Your Homeschool
First, let’s start with story-time. Story-time is usually offered for different age groups at many libraries. Typically, you may find a theme each month or week and may find the library offers crafts or game time that corresponds with the theme.
We have always loved story-time at the library. In fact, we basically used the preschool library program as our primary preschool. We had a story, a song or two, games and a craft centered around themes like dogs, dinosaurs, weather, apples and holidays. We then checked out more books on the subject to read at home and continued the theme.
#2 – BOOK CLUBS
Many libraries have books clubs for various age group, for kids and adults. This is a great way to be introduced to new books. Additionally, there is some accountability to read the book when in a book club. This is good for me or otherwise, I will find a million other things to do.
Some libraries will also offer homeschool book clubs. This is a great opportunity for your kids to read a book and discuss it in a group setting with other homeschool kids. If your library does not offer a homeschool, book club, don’t be afraid to ask them to consider hosting one. Many libraries are looking for ways to engage their local community and they want to know what you are looking for.
We utilize the library summer reading program every year. It provides the kids with reading lists and incentives for reading all summer. It is an excellent program and something all my kids can do and look forward to. Our library even has an adult summer reading program, which is fun to participate in as well.
Additionally, some libraries offer summer “camp” during the days giving kids a time to do projects, read books, and play games together. Be sure to see what your library offers in the summer.
#4- EXTRA PROGRAMS
Many times there are extra programs offered at your local library. There may be holiday or seasonal activities like Christmas story or Easter readings, music programs or movie nights. There are sometimes classes geared to adults that many accept teens to teach computer software, resume writing or even how to balance a checkbook.
Sometimes you may have to visit a nearby library or another branch of your library to take advantage of all these extra programs, but it can be well worth the trip at times for the right programs and classes so be sure to check them out, even if it is not a library you frequent.
Even if you don’t do library programs, taking advantages of basic library resources is a great benefit. Some of the resources we love to utilize at out library include audio books, free movies, and the computers. Some libraries even have curriculum you can use, or get on interlibrary loan, to allow you to save on purchasing curriculum.
My son loves the learning software on the kid computers at the library. And the puzzles and “hear a story” books are great too. My toddler loves the puzzles and computers and my older daughter loves researching the books and using interlibrary loans or holds and reading new magazines while we are at the library.
Overall, we love our library and are usually there at least twice a month.
What is your favorite thing to do at the library?
Day #2 – How to Maximize your Library
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