How Libraries are Helping Communities Thrive During COVID-19?

The first true public library in the United States was founded by 1848 while the first lending library in the U.S. was founded in 1731 (ALA, 2020). Regardless of which of those two dates is most accurate, libraries across the United States have been around for a long time. During that time, the nation has experienced many challenges, changes, wars, recessions, and health crises. Despite all of the events that have occurred during the past 200 years or so, libraries have not only survived, but thrived. I believe that the past is often the best indicator of the future. We are all learning to live in a CoVID-19 world and this time has brought us new uncertainties. The pandemic has also underscored the fact that we are resilient, and that each of us is even stronger when working together to create solutions.

Supercharge Your Little Free Library

Little Free Libraries (LFLs) are one of the largest book-sharing movements in the world. These small, wooden boxes have been appearing in neighborhoods everywhere and offer an easy book exchange for those looking to discover new reads and share some of their favorite books as well. These libraries are useful because they offer books 24 hours a day, 7 days a week to those looking for something new to dive into. Little Free libraries function on an honor system. Basically, if you take a book out of the library for yourself, you’re expected to pay it forward by leaving a book for someone in the future to come across and take.

Supercharge Your Little Free Library

Little Free Libraries (LFLs) are one of the largest book-sharing movements in the world. These small, wooden boxes have been appearing in neighborhoods everywhere and offer an easy book exchange for those looking to discover new reads and share some of their favorite books as well.

Innovative Ways Libraries Are Helping Communities During COVID

Libraries are always changing and growing to help their communities — now more than ever. Since the Coronavirus pandemic became a prevalent global presence earlier this spring, many organizations have had to adapt the way they run to keep their doors open to the community in some capacity. Libraries around the world have been especially innovative with coming up with smart and effective ways to continue serving their communities. Libraries are diverse centers that offer endless opportunities and resources to their communities. Beyond access to materials and books, libraries also provide educational workshops, access to technology and internet, afterschool and summer programs, and many more resources. The pandemic has not changed libraries’ missions. Public libraries have been coming up with creative ideas to adapt their services in the face of COVID restrictions and shutdowns. These libraries have developed novel ways of tackling life in the time of Coronavirus. Here are highlights of just a few of the many that are working to serve their communities.

Even in the Digital Age, Books-by-Mail Matters for Americans

The boom in technological advancements over the past few decades have moved many forms of entertainment to online platforms. Movies are rented and downloaded within seconds. Music can be endlessly streamed. E-books mean that everything from bestsellers to car manuals are released in physical and electronic forms. It may be easy to get caught up with screens, but we’re here to remind you that even in a digital centric society, books-by-mail make life-changing impacts on many Americans.

Reading for Fun — and Not Just Classwork — During COVID

When school is in session, it can be easy to get wrapped up in homework assignments, exams, and, during COVID distancing, endless Zoom calls for virtual classes. It’s a very stressful time. For many students, the joy of reading and the fun that comes from reading outside of school work could get lost. We want to remind parents and caregivers that the public library and school library offer students of any age or reading ability the books, ebooks, audiobooks, and videos that can help stressed-out kids and teens get through the new school normal.

12 Back to School Tips from Your Public Library

One thing that librarians are always advocating for is reading. With back to school season picking back up — and with the state of the world as it is right now- parents might be nervous about how to best ensure their kids are staying engaged with their learning while, most importantly, staying safe. It’s understandable that with many changes like remote or hybrid learning and less in-person socializing with friends is enough to take any kid’s mind off of reading. While we are all writing the new “how-to” book on ways to help kids stay enthusiastic about reading in the midst of something as stressful as a global pandemic, these 12 tips are a good way to start and can help keep kids on track:

Why We Need Libraries Now More Than Ever

The oldest library on record dates back to the 7th century BC and contained 4,000-year-old artifacts. Public libraries are governmental institutions that allow us free access to tons of resources and information. In the age of smart-phone technology, we have instant access to the world’s information right in our pockets. As a result, we might overlook just how valuable libraries truly are. Let’s talk about why libraries are more important than ever before.

Five Tips for How to Read Again (Even When the World is Falling Apart)

It took me three months into the COVID-19 quarantine to be able to open a book again. And even then, reading it was slow-going. Many people I’ve talked to still can’t seem to focus for long enough to read a book; they read a page, then reread it, then put down the book in frustration. This behavior makes unfortunate sense with all the anxiety of a deadly virus, an upcoming election, and the various disruptions our lives have experienced. Didn’t reading used to be an act that brought solace? Books the barriers from the world’s woes? Stories, our mutual getaway? Yes, yes, and yes…and they can be again! Here are five tactics to get back aboard the book train:

What if Everyone in Town Read the Same Book?

The One Book, One Community idea sprang from the mind of Nancy Pearl, librarian and author of the Book Lust series, in 1998 during her tenure as the Director of the Washington Center for the Book at the Seattle Public Library. By 2005 libraries in all fifty states had started a One Book program. It was a simple, elegant idea — strengthen a community by having them read and discuss the same book — proved an easy sell to libraries across the country serving a wide variety of populations. The American Library Association embraced the idea in 2003 and, through the Public Programs Office, helps libraries launch and market these programs. Local, regional and even state-wide One Book programs show the way this idea can scale given the need of the community involved. And despite the pandemic, many libraries have decided to move forward with their One Book programs, following local public health guidelines.