6 Straightforward Ways Libraries Can Supercharge Your New Year’s Resolutions

An approaching new year can be a stressful time. Only a few days after the joyful crush of the holidays it’s time to reflect on the past year and yes, create meaningful resolutions for the year ahead. It’s a tall order to be sure. Luckily for all of us, libraries are there to help! Here are some straightforward (and maybe unexpected) ways libraries can not only inspire, but also play a strong role in, facilitating a new year that enriches you and those around you:

Your Toddler Wants to Hang Out at the Library

When it comes to helping toddlers to laugh, learn, socialize, and develop early literacy skills, your children’s librarian is an expert. Library ToddlerTimes are a terrific educational and social experience for toddlers. At this age, children begin learning to make friends, to become literate, and to really explore the world in which we live. It’s awesome to watch them grow through the magic of ToddlerTime!

Six Ways that School Libraries Have Changed (and One that Will Always Be the Same)

If you haven’t been in a school for a while, you might want to start your visit with a stop in the school library. It has been a place of amazing transformations and innovations. What most people picture — the library of their childhood — has little resemblance to the dynamic school libraries of the twenty-first century. Here are six ways that school libraries have transformed, and one way they have stayed the same:

Language Learning and Libraries

Do you have an exciting trip on the horizon and need to learn a new language — or is there a New Years Resolution you need to make good on — but don’t know where do you turn? If the library isn’t your first answer, it should be! From free apps to books and CDs to conversation groups, the public library will get you set to speak, understand, and even read a new language. Public libraries offer a huge array of language learning resources including free subscriptions to online resources, books and CDs for checkout, in-person classes and conversation groups, and more! Forget the travel agent and the luggage store — your first stop to plan your language-learning trip is your local library.

A Teen Librarian’s Tips for Talking to Young People Over the Holidays

‘Tis the season for family gatherings where the teens and young adultsamong us are inevitably hit with a familiar onslaught of pryingquestions. Innocuous at best and insensitive at worst, small talk likethis usually comes from well-meaning relatives unsure of where else togo in conversations with young people. But the truth is this rote lineof questioning often leads to a dead end. Teens rattle off their prepared answers, grown-ups give an empathetic sigh, and that’s pretty much it.

Media Literacy for Every Producer

Published in partnership with the Center for Media Literacy. In our hyper connected world, everyone is a “media producer”. It is not just the people who create video, audio, or blog content. And it is not just the big studios or people in the media industry creating content any more — we all create content by using social media sites and communicating via text and images.

Memory Cafés Connect Families

Libraries help families facing dementia, early onset Alzheimer’s, and other cognitive issues for loved ones. With memory loss affecting 40% of all U.S. adults over the age of 65, an increasing number of individuals and the loved ones who care for them are finding themselves isolated from the life that they once knew. Knowing that this significant population of people wasn’t able to utilize many of their traditional services, public libraries started to look for a way to integrate this group, and in 2013, they came upon the idea of Memory Cafés — a support group with a special twist.

How Libraries Help Teens Tackle the Job Search

Finding a job is a lot like doing research for a paper. In order to find a job, teens need to know where and how to look. For teens with little or no work and job-seeking experience, the task can feel overwhelming and confusing! How does your local library fit in? For starters, there are many job postings online and libraries provide Internet access and computer usage at no charge. Libraries also provide one-on-one assistance to job seekers of all ages. It’s recommended that you call the library before you go and ask to book an appointment with a librarian. That way, a teen services or reference librarian can prepare to spend time giving “hands-on” help without interruptions.

Researching Your Way through a Million Results

Research has shown that false news stories travel six times faster than truthful news on social media. Fortunately, school librarians help students navigate a world where too much incorrect information surrounds them. Partnering with teachers and parents, school librarians offer essential lessons that not only help students with their current research project but also help develop critical literacy skills necessary for a lifetime of learning, researching, and reading.

Rogue Librarians and Activist Archivists!

We all — hopefully — have a story about a moment in library when something wonderful happened to light a love of reading in our hearts. Or in an archive where, through the magic of preservation and curation, history stayed alive and did not fade. There are ‘special collections’ that matter to whole communities and entire nations. And there are some that are special to just a few.