Thursday, August 28, 2008

'Smartest Card' improves school performance

September is Library Card Sign-up Month, and Fauquier County Public Library wants to make sure that your child has the smartest card of all – a library card.

Studies show that children who use the library and are read to in the home perform better in school and are more likely to continue to use the library as a source of lifetime learning. A recent study also showed that families use libraries to spend time together. Forty-four percent of survey respondents reported taking their children to the library for this reason.

Summer reading programs keep children reading during school vacation and have been shown to be the most important factor in avoiding the decrease in reading skills that educators refer to as "summer learning loss." This summer more than 1,900 children and teens participated in Fauquier County Public Library summer reading programs and they read 25,345 books collectively.

Now that the summer is over and children are returning to school, it is important to remember that a library card has always been the most important school supply of all. Children and teens can come to the library to get homework help and check out books, but they can also check out free music, DVDs and use the Internet to do research and to make after school life a little more fun. There’s a lot happening at Fauquier County libraries.

Throughout September, new library card recipients are invited to have their photos taken for display in the library, and small prizes will be given to children and teens that show their new cards to a reference librarian.

Also, all month the library will be featuring the many ways you can use the library, including using online resources and participating in a variety of programs - programs that stimulate an interest in reading and learning. Story programs expose young children, even babies, to the joy of reading, and librarians are on hand to help recommend materials suitable for various ages and interests. Check out online book lists for children and teens and see Kiddosphere for reviews and news on children's materials.

The library's Web site has a wealth of information and features pages for all ages, including special pages for parents, educators, children and teens.

E-resources are some of the most valuable resources available to library card holders and are accessible at the library or from your home computer using your library card.

These e-resources are free - all you need is a library card. Apply online and your library card will be mailed to you in about 10 days.