This post is part of a link-up at iHomeschool Network. To find more Ways to Learn at the Library, scroll down!
Our local library has been the best resource for our homeschool. With its free materials and updated features, my boys and I are blessed to have such a tremendous treasure close to home. The greatest benefit is how all 5 of my boys (ages 1-13) can have library learning fun!
We live in a rural area and often must travel 15-20 minutes to get to most places. Fortunately, the small town, within 5 minutes driving time of our home, received a surge of grant money and man power that has included a major overhaul of its library. The children’s section practically quadrupled in size and a teen room was added!
My boys and I try to go to the library a few times a month, usually on Friday mornings. We enjoy having most of the space to ourselves during the school year. Our library is very tolerant of noise in the children’s section so I don’t have to worry about my toddler’s shrieks of joy at the latest Elmo book.
I love how our library visits can give each boy an opportunity to search for that book or other educational resource that fits their individual interest. Bickering and attitudes tend to decrease for a time after our trips to the library. Each boy benefits from time alone to pursue their passions.
Library time for Busy Boys Brigade also often includes a few, if not all, of my boys working together on a project. Interactive chess games on touch screen computers, Lego sets, and trains on a table all invite my boys to reunite and have fun with all that our library has to offer.
I must admit that I often feel spoiled by how much is available for use in our children’s library. Considering the area in which we live, we are so blessed to have many of these features.
Library Learning Fun
My boys love using the Lego sets at our library. They love building with our Legos at home so they are just thrilled to be able to use different sets. The boys either work together or alone but always have a great time.
Our library has many toddler and preschool puzzles. Xman and Bear love to search through the puzzles shelf and try different ones. I love watching their faces light up as they solve a new puzzle!
Our library has a fantastic section filled with donated books that are resold to raise money for the library activities and resources. For a fraction of the cost, we have found many treasures in this nook for use in our homeschool and personal reading. Our favorite library days are when we can fill a plastic grocery bag with books for a mere $5!
Touch Screen Computers
All of my boys love using the computers available in our local library. Four touch screen computers are available for kids to use. Safety features only allow certain games and searches. My two older boys particularly enjoy playing touch screen chess.
Cool Checkout Area
We love to check out all that our library has to offer in its children’s section check out area. Take a close look at this checkout desk-the walls are made from the spines of books that were damaged! Awesome way to upcycle! My boys peer at the titles and get excited when they find previously undiscovered ones.
The children’s section of our library has 2 mascots-aquatic frogs! My boys love to sit, observe the frogs’ behaviors and watch them grow.
Free DVD Rentals
Family-friendly titles are available to rent for free at our library. It is nice to have this option of educational and entertaining titles at our disposal.
Crafts & Activities
Our library allows kids to make-and-take many crafts. My older boys enjoy using their silly bandz. Organized make-and-take crafts are also scheduled during after-school hours.
It is awesome having a separate area for Captain to use when we are at the library. Since he has entered his teen years, Captain feels like the children’s area is a bit “babyish” for him. He likes to find a book or two and lounge in one of the comfy chairs while his younger brothers explore the children’s area in an adjoining room.
Our library was given a 3D printer about 2 years ago! When I heard that it was open for use to the public (after a training class), I quickly set up a class for homeschoolers. My boys have made some pretty cool 3D prints; a snowman ornament and Minecraft creeper are two of their favorites. (3D printer not shown in picture below. It has to be moved to a separate area to protect this expensive machine from damage.)
This powerful telescope is available to check out. I am hoping to borrow it this summer with my boys as part of an astronomy unit study.
Room to Move
The children’s area of our library provides plenty of room for kids to stretch out and explore. My boys love to use their bean bag chairs and these reading nooks.
I highly recommend chatting with your library’s staff. They share tips and previews of exciting materials to come. During our conversations, I have talked about a few resources that I wish our library had (mostly book titles). Our librarian has written down my suggestions and uses money out of their budget to add to their book shelves. Next time you are planning ahead for your homeschool, consider talking to your librarian and finding out if they have room in their budget for some of the books or resources!
Oh, I must share one more fabulous service that our library has that has been so extremely helpful for our homeschool. Inter-library loan!! I often go to our library’s web site and do a search for whatever homeschool resource we need. If our library does not have it in stock, I can order it to be delivered to our library-and they call me to pick it up when it arrives! It has saved us so much time and money!
I hope that sharing all that our local library has to offer for learning fun for all ages encourages you to find out more about your library’s resources.
[bctt tweet=”Library Learning Fun For All Ages! part of #ihsnet Ways to Learn At the Library “]
If you enjoyed this post and want even more great Ways to Learn at the Library, click on image below!
A few of the great gals over at iHomeschool Network have been working hard to share their ideas with all of us!