Library Makerspaces Spark Creativity

A makerspace may be something that has been on your radar lately. These innovative and collaborative environments are being incorporated into a variety of spaces. A makerspace can be big or small and hold any number of tools and materials for users to investigate and learn. The purpose of having a makerspace is to present people with an opportunity to explore their interests through hands-on, creative projects. Makerspaces create a culture of curiosity and creativity, encouraging its users to learn about a variety of technology as well as craft making. Creating a makerspace in a school library is especially beneficial for students. A makerspace placed in a library setting opens a whole new world of resources and exploration in students and can do plenty when it comes to their learning process. Because projects done in the makerspace are focused on student centered inquiry, this makes them ideal to implement in school environments.

Libraries Help Us Preserve Our COVID-Era Stories

Humans are natural storytellers. We know that history isn’t just the official accounts and what’s in the news. History, if properly told, is filled with stories passed down from people to people and through generations. Exploring stories throughout history teaches us a lot about how the world was. COVID-19 will make it in the history books as one of the largest public health crises the world has faced in the past century. But how did people living through it experience the events they witnessed, the emotions they felt, and how everything was affected by the shutdowns? Libraries are one of the key local organizations working to capture what life is like in pandemic times. Back in the early 1900s during the Spanish Influenza pandemic, there were not as many documented cases of personal experiences and ephemera. We do not know an extensive amount about what it was like for someone living through that time period. Institutions across the country and the globe recognize the importance of preserving these experiences this time through. That is why COVID-19 archives are popping up at institutions all over the world. By seeking the help of their local communities and historical societies, libraries across the nation and the world are creating digital and physical archives to document the effects of the pandemic on everyday life. These stories will all piece together to give insight to future generations on what this past year in lockdown has been like for different populations of people.

How Public Libraries Are Upping Their Audio Game Using Dial-A-Story

Audiobooks have been available in public libraries across America for years now and their popularity is only growing. However, checking out an audiobook from a library is not always the perfect solution for everyone. Many people do not have an audiobook-friendly device like a smartphone. There may be barriers for those developing digital literacy skills. There is also the issue of public libraries lacking funding to offer an extensive audiobook collection. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t something libraries can do. The team at the Galecia Group has worked to develop a service that brings audio stories to everyone: LibraryCall, and the exciting Library Dial-A-Story service. “We developed LibraryCall for those trapped on the wrong side of the digital divide with no broadband connectivity, no computer at home, and no library computer to rely upon,” says Lori Ayre, Galecia Group’s founder and CEO. “Digital poverty has left these people hanging by a thread during this pandemic, and we wanted to find a way to keep them from being completely isolated. So we designed a service to deliver critical information by phone, to deliver stories by phone, and to deliver calendar information by phone.” The suite of services is called LibraryCall.

Libraries are the People’s Incubator

Businesses at every stage — from ideation to launch to scale — can benefit from the resources at the public library and the expertise of librarians. Libraries give companies access to data, market research, testing and opportunities to scale. Librarians also have an extensive knowledge base to help entrepreneurs grow their businesses. Libraries are mobile and forward-thinking. Libraries have innovative resources, such as 3D printers and tablets, which can be leveraged during the product development cycle. Many of the resources you need can be accessed remotely from your office.

Try Out That Cookbook Before You Buy It

Cooking is more than just putting food on the table. Cooking helps you explore cultures, it brings people together across generations, and help people relax. Whether people have been following their parents in the kitchen from a young age or learning how to cook on their own for the first time, the library is an unexpected — and delightful — kitchen helper made for all ages and skills. Libraries buy books on a wide array of topics. Cookbooks are commonly found in library stacks and can be checked out by library patrons at any time. Cookbook collections in libraries are diverse. People may be surprised to know that newly published cookbooks can be found just as easily as cookbooks published throughout the ages. Smart cooks know that the library is the first place to visit when looking to try out a cookbook. This section of the library offers convenient access to recipes from all over.

Libraries’ Role In Adulthood Preparedness

Children and young adults create and experience a variety of memories at their local public libraries. These are places where they grow their reading and communication skills, learn about their interests and hobbies, and develop important social skills as well as connections to their communities. The library is a space that prepares young adults to face the challenges and tasks that adults experience like job searching, research skills, etc. They play a key factor in teaching “adulting” skills. The role that libraries play in the lives of young Americans is greater than we believe. Those that grow up being supported by their local libraries have an easier transition into adult life.

Learning to Adult at the Library

Many people grow up at the library. They joined in on storytimes and crafts as a child, spent their pre-teen years browsing books, and dedicated lots of study and social hours to the library as they got older. When it comes time to be adults, libraries are also there to teach important life skills that help people transition to being independent. Libraries have a wide range of programming on their calendars. It is no surprise that adulting 101 is a common event especially since these classes address many skills that are not taught in a classroom setting. These events cover topics from finance, cooking, or internet etiquette to sewing, emergency preparedness, and even how to tie a tie. Many young adults miss out on learning this knowledge for a variety of reasons. Many of the topics that these events address are not always consciously taught. This can lead them to struggles when they transition from living dependently to living on their own. The results are poor financial choices, inability to navigate job searches, or unhealthy diets.

Libraries and Non-profits

Libraries are well-known for supporting their communities in a variety of ways. Whether through welcoming spaces, useful information, or various services, this is one place that immediately comes to mind when people are looking for helpful resources. The cool part of how libraries function comes from the combination of knowledge, connection, and innovation. One example of this shows up in the way that libraries support local and national nonprofit organizations. Libraries help strengthen the nonprofit sector in unique ways that other institutions may not have the capacity to. Afterall, libraries themselves are nonprofits working to improve many problems and close a variety of gaps. When influential organizations come together to build up one another, exciting and impactful results come out of it.

Read More With the Help of “Book Challenges”

Feeling the pull of books, want to read more, but not sure where to begin? Use the structure of a book challenge. Book challenges help you by providing a setlist of subjects or books for you to choose from. Many have quarterly deadlines (though you can join at any time) and badges to collect. They provide a community to talk about books and setbacks. Most of all, they make reading fun, and, in all the whirl of setting and reaching a goal, remember that is the ultimate goal.

Libraries Ensure Financial Literacy Among Americans.

Libraries are helpful learning centers for a variety of people. Whether you’re curious to learn about a cool new author, interesting new science topics, or even the history of your local community, libraries are there to provide you with the resources needed in your education. Libraries are also a great tool for those in the community looking for help when it comes to becoming financially literate. Low and moderate income families can use the library to help them achieve economic security through a variety of ways. Libraries are capable of providing sound financial education and insight into savings programs that can help these families out in the long run.