In honor of National Library Week and the Free2 Contest, I thought I would list some of my favorite things at the library. If you haven’t been to a library lately, you are missing a great resource. Besides reading times for everyone from lap babies to families, today’s library offers computer access, ESL classes, homework help and family activities for all age groups. As I write this post, I am surrounded by children and adults enjoying the computers, a movie and study time. Individuals and groups can rent rooms in the libraries for functions and meetings. Of course, “your mileage may vary”. Which translates to “you might not have all of these features at your local library”. But I suspect that some of the features listed will be available either on line or via the telephone. Have fun.
1) Placing a hold or request on an item and having the item delivered to the library branch of my choice. How? After retrieving the record for the item, click on the Request button (or Hold depending upon your library system) and then follow the prompts. I love receiving an email telling me that my DVD, audio book, latest Nora Roberts, or Sherilyn Kenyon book is waiting patently for me to retrieve it from my local branch.
2) Requesting materials from libraries throughout California using the Link+ feature and again, having the item delivered to the library branch of my choice. How? Access the record of the item you would like or the subject. Click on the Search Link+ button (or hold depending upon your library system) and then follow the prompts.
3) Accessing ebooks, music and audio books. How? Either click on the link from your local library or go to Overdrive.com. Enter your library card information and follow the prompts. If the item you want is not available, use the hold/request feature. You’ll get an email when the item is ready for you to check out. Best of all, you don’t have to worry about returning the item. Your license to read or listen to the item will simply expire at the end of the borrowing period.
4) No residency requirements. My family has library cards for San Jose Public Library, Santa Clara City Library and Santa Clara County Library. Why? Different library systems have different Link+ agreements so something that is not available through SJPL might be available through Santa Clara County Library.
5) Internet and computer access. As I write this is I am at the Hillview branch (San Jose Public Library) while Ian is at golf. You can stop by your local library to access a computer.
6) Free homework assistance for grades 4th – 12th (depending upon the library system). The online tutoring service is available in English and Spanish depending upon the library system.
7) Great things to do. The libraries are a great place to hang out. This week several libraries will offer time on Wii’s, Dance Dance Revolution, eating and parenting classes, movies at the library, and talent shows. I took a class on blogging at the Sunnyvale Library.
8) Last but not least, our favorite librarian, Ms. Hannah at the Cambrian Branch, who always has a smile, hug and saved Ian’s history project.
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Originally Posted on: 5/1/2008 2:50:00 PM