Hope For Those of Us Who DO NOT Enjoy the Library

I suppose its obvious from the title I am not a huge fan of the library.  I have always had visions of my little ducklings following behind me with their personalized tote bags full of wonderful literature. Yet somehow my reality couldn’t have been more different.  Our journeys to the local library mostly consisted of the kids pleading to play the computer games which now take up a good portion of the children’s section, and finding any book displaying Barbie or a monster truck. Not my idea of life changing stories.  This lead to me trying desperately to convince them we should find better stories with better illustrations, which lead to frustration for everyone. Sounds fun, am I right?
After a long period of avoiding the library all together and relying on Amazon for all my book needs, which I assure you are many, my homeschool forced a change. We participate in Classical Conversations and my oldest was entering Challenge A. This meant he would be writing a science paper every week on a new topic and of course would need resources. Even Amazon wasn’t going to be able to keep up with this. And truthfully, I don’t want to buy books about algae and clouds. So back to the library I go.

One huge change solved my dilemma. I began going to the library alone. ALONE. I began making my library trips in the evening or on weekends when my husband was home. I had two missions on these solo trips. One, to find (or try to find) great books for read aloud time. Two, find resources for my son’s reports.

The first mission was significantly easier to accomplish on my own. I could browse a few sections and pretty quickly pull out a collection of great read alouds. My children needed to see what a great story looked like, what it sounded like, and how it made them feel. It’s my job to show them. Without needing to steer them away from the brightest colored book cover, I am able to find stories I know will speak to their souls.

The second mission forced me to investigate my library’s online capabilities. It was a bit painful in the beginning due to my lack of patience. I’m working on it. It did, however,  quickly make my library phobia almost disappear. 
Here’s my routine…
I pull up my city library website and do a book search for the keywords I’m looking for. Once the search list pops up I look at the availability of the books  and request only those that are available at my local branch. This allows me to get the book within two days because I’m not waiting for it to be shipped from some far off location.  A critical timeframe when there is a paper due every friday. Within a couple of days the library texts me that I can pick up my books and I can get them when I have time. 
On those occasions when I don’t see a book available locally that I’m happy with? I jot down the call  numbers for some of the other choices. This way when I get to the library I just head to that section and there are always several choices which were not listed on line.
My last step was teaching my 12 year how to do all of this. Because, he’s 12. He should be getting his own library books. We’re almost there. 
 I do get to carry my own cute tote bag to the library and enjoy my time. I’m sure someday I will take my kids to the library again but for now I’ll be doing what works for me. And I’ll be feeling pretty good about it. 

2 thoughts on “Hope For Those of Us Who DO NOT Enjoy the Library

  1. Ashley Antkowiak

    Yes! My oldest is 5 and this makes me think we will probably never enjoy the library together lol. I love putting books on hold, whether for me or them. That way we can go, waste time in the kids section, then leave with just the books I had already put on hold. It works great!

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