The Speedway Public Library offers a variety of exciting resources for young children through the creation of Toddler Time and Story Time events. For children ages four and younger, Toddler Time joins caregivers, children and librarians together weekly in twenty minute increments to sing entertaining songs, read exciting books, and gather together to experience new activities. For children slightly older, Story Time is an option. During Story Time, children three to six years old gather together every week to experience new stories and enjoy other activities and songs from a lesson plan prepared by a librarian.
An online library resource page is offered by the Speedway Public Library to children and youth that are interested in looking for books on a certain topic. By going to the Speedway Public Library e-library tab on the left side of the library homepage, and then viewing the “Kids’ Library” tab, children and youth are able to see bibliographies of books offered on a certain subject, which is connected directly to the library’s online public access catalog (OPAC), to see if the books are available at the current time. Children may click on the following tabs to find more information: ‘A’ to ‘Z’ (books about subjects arranged by letter), Animals, Cooking, Fun Stuff, Handicrafts, Holidays, Jokes & Riddles, Kids’ Concerns, Plays, Poems, Science, Spooky Things, Sports, Stories, & United States. Some examples of topics found under each of these headings are as follows:
- ‘A’ to ‘Z’: Adoption, Adventure stories, Apes, Aquariums, Death, Declaration of Independence, Deer, Desert Storm, Dinosaurs, Diving, Latchkey, Lexington & Concord, Light, Lions and Tigers, etc.
- Animals: Bears, Chickens and Poultry, Eagles, Frogs, Mice, Owls, Pet Stories, etc.
- Cooking: Opens directly to the OPAC to a variety of children’s cookbooks
- Fun Stuff: Board games, Collecting, Fortunes, Magic Tricks, Parties, Puzzles, etc.
- Handicrafts: Baskets, Drawing & Sketching, Jewelry, Models, Needlework, Paper art and origami, sculpture, etc.
- Holidays: Christmas, Easter, Halloween, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, etc.
- Jokes & Riddles: Opens directly to an OPAC search of joke and riddle materials for youth
- Kids Concerns: Adoption, Child Abuse, Divorce, Handicaps, Homeless, Manners, Peer Pressure, Racism, etc.
- Plays: Opens directly to an OPAC search of materials concerning plans and theatre for youth
- Poems: Opens directly to an OPAC search of poetry materials for youth
- Science: Chemistry, Electricity, Inventors & Inventions, Magnets & Magnetism, Planets, Science Projects, Solar system, Sound, etc.
- Spooky Things: Ghosts, Monsters, Superstitions, Werewolves, Witches & Witchcraft, etc.
- Sports: Auto racing, Boxing, Gymnastics, Martial Arts, Soccer, Wrestling, etc.
- Stories: Adventure stories, Funny stories, Science fiction, Westerns, etc.
- United States: Civil war, Congress, Desert storm, French & Indian War, Korean War, Revolutionary war, Statue of Liberty, War of 1812, etc.
Additionally, there is homework assistance offered for children in kindergarten through grade six every Wednesday from 4 to 6pm. For slightly older teens and young adults, homework help is available weekly on Thursdays from 5 to 7pm.
Many libraries offer book discussions for adults, but it is beneficial for individuals to become involved in reading, discussing and interpreting literature at a young age. The Speedway Public Library is planning on beginning book discussions for youth and young adults next year, and is currently looking for responses to a short survey at their home website to determine what books should be considered. All survey answers are anonymous and ask for the following information: Age, Grade, Favorite books, Favorite types of books, What to discuss, What to do (talk about the book, make crafts, make a video, watch the movie version), and information regarding a possible Game Day after book discussions.
Offering a wide variety of opportunities for youth to become involved in using the library website and becoming involved in library programs is clearly a priority at the Speedway Public Library. A wide variety of ages are catered to in many different programs that are offered on a regular basis to patrons. Increased advertising through the library website and word of mouth will ensure that the plethora of resources available to youth in this area does not go unused.