Library Services – Adapting to the New Normal

By Sophia Wambach | October 12, 2020

Library Services Summer 2020 - Kim Farnham-Flom

Your support of library services ensured that each student at Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School had books to read over the summer.

When schools closed on March 13th, our Succeeding by Reading Library Services Program immediately pivoted to help the kids as much as possible. The libraries might have been closed, but Ms. Kim and her team provided new books to each student of Martin Luther King, Jr. Elementary School as parents dropped by to pick up the children’s homework packets in the early days of distance learning. These new books were purchased in partnership with the Oakland/Piedmont chapter of the American Association of University Women.

Traditional in-person readings in the MLK library were immediately replaced with book reading videos that were recorded by some of the Children Rising library volunteers. Experienced reader and amateur actor Elmer Strasser recorded The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe in a series of videos for the children that they could access and watch from home during the early days of shelter in place. A wonderful example can be viewed here:

With a continued focus on providing the kids more books to read, the Library Services team gave away an additional 400 books on school registration day in August. Volunteers continue to provide live storytime sessions for families and will organize book giveaways as opportunities allow. The kids love to read and the more books they have available to read, and the more books that are read to them, the faster their reading skills will advance. Later this year, we hope to facilitate online book and internet research groups, while we continue to circulate as many additional books to the children as possible.

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