Programs for Building the Brain and Keeping it Sharp

Homebound and Racing to Read Staff

Homebound and Racing to Read Staff

As the Coordinator of Outreach Services at the Kenton County Public Library it is mine and my staffs’ privilege to bring programs and materials to local child care and assisted living facilities throughout Kenton County.  Our programs differ at each facility and are based on the needs of our patrons.If you sat in on a program at a child care facility you would find a story time filled with music, finger plays, puppets, wonderful books that are building the child’s imaginative skills, listening and reading skills, and increasing their phonic awareness. You would also see children interacting with the programmers and developing their social skills.

Homebound brings programs, which assist with keeping the brain sharp through reminiscing type exercises, to assisted living facilities. Some centers choose slide show presentations that take the residents on a trip down memory lane. Other centers opt for more intense brain exercises involving crossword puzzles and answering trivia questions.  Whatever the program might be the main goals are to provide entertainment for our patrons and to help exercise their minds through building new skills or helping them maintain current skills.

Do you know someone who lives in a senior facility? What types of programs do you think they would enjoy? Do we visit your child? Do they like the Racing to Read program?

By Kari Jones, Coordinator of Outreach Services

Call Homebound at 859-962-4062 for more information.

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Library Services Delivered to Your Home

When I was 11, I found out I would need major surgery to correct a problem with my spine. I missed a little over a month of school because I was confined to my home for recovery, and then after that month came to an end I had another three months of extremely limited activity.  I went to school and then came straight home every day. Prior to surgery, I’d gotten into the habit of visiting the library once every week or two and bringing home stacks of books each time – but suddenly I was faced with four months of being cut off from my reading supply. It was a shock for me, especially since this was before the age of the Kindle or the Nook and the possibility to browse through an entire library from the couch.

The goal of the Kenton County Public Library Homebound Services – now part of the larger Outreach Services department – is to provide services to the patrons within Kenton County who find themselves unable to physically visit the library. Most often, when this kind of outreach service is mentioned, people only think of the elderly and books. But in reality there is much more involved in what we do.  We work every day to take all of the excellent services that the Library is known for (like reference, circulation, reader’s advisory, programming, etc.), roll it all into one, and deliver them directly to the homes of our patrons.  Some of the people enrolled in the program are simply the residents of a local senior living facility, other times they are people who can’t get out of their own houses due to a disability, and sometimes they are people who are temporarily unable to use the library because of a serious illness or injury. We serve all ages.

Having books around wouldn’t have made the surgery itself any better for me, and it wouldn’t have shortened my recovery time.  However, it would have made the time pass much easier and faster for both me and my parents.  They certainly didn’t have the time to go get books for me – they had their hands full with helping me recover and maintaining a normal routine for my sister, all while they both worked their own jobs.  Visiting the library was a luxury – and just like other non-essential trips, it was months before it became a part of my life again.  If homebound services were available, the Library would have delivered library materials to me and my family members who were caring for me.

We are here to help Kenton County residents, young and old, who find themselves in a position where they can no longer get to the Library.  Whether it’s because of a disability, they can no longer drive or because they are recovering from a surgery like I was, they are suddenly without access to the Library’s resources. Our job in Homebound is to re-establish the connection between the patron and the library.

If you or someone you know is a Kenton County resident who finds themselves unable to get to the library due to medical limitations or providing care for someone, whether they are 2 or 92, please visit our website or call our office at 859-962-4062 for more information.

Have you used the Library Homebound services? What do you think of this service?

This post was written by Ashlee Hummeldorf with the Library Homebound Services

Balancing School Work

I am mother of two school-aged children and I was not surprised when I came across an article about the importance of parental involvement in school success.   According to a recent study “while both school and family involvement are important; the role of family involvement is stronger when it comes to academic success.”  Family involvement includes prioritizing school and homework as well as a healthy family relationship. For my family, the library plays an important role supporting academic work.

Many schools use the Accelerated Reader program. After you’ve used www.arbookfind.com to find a book for your child, put it on hold at www.kentonlibrary.org.  You can even request to pick up your books at a drive through and pick them quickly on busy days. Having trouble finding an AR book your child will enjoy?  Stop by or call the children’s department at any location and the children’s staff will help you and your child find a book.

Of course we have the books your child needs for research, but you can access a wealth of resources from your home computer with your library card at www.kentonlibrary.org.    At our house, we’ve used Culture Grams Kids for country reports, watched volcanoes erupting on Grolier Encyclopedia and found an in depth explanation on Access Science.  Someday, I’m sure we’ll use the test prep on Learning Express.  These quality resources are accurate and reliable and a great way to teach your children that research does not begin and end with a search engine. Every time I go to our website, I find a new way to use those databases!

Finally, research shows that children who see their parents reading for pleasure develop into stronger readers themselves. Make sure you are finding book, ebooks and magazines that will keep you reading too!

How are you prioritizing school in your household?

Ms. Amy’s daughter hard at work!

This post was written by Amy Schardein, Covington Library Children’s Librarian

Dare to Read for the Fun of It!

It’s Teen Read Week – Oct. 14-20! Teen Read Week is a time to celebrate reading for fun and encourage teens to take advantage of reading in all its forms —books and magazines, e-books, audiobooks and more — and become regular library users.

I have a teen in my house who loves attending library programs and reading young adult books. I’m not a librarian (public relations coordinator) nor did I work at the library when she was little. I did read to her a lot when she was little so I do have to take some credit for her love of books. My 13-year-old, Andi, enjoys the popular books like the Hunger Games and Twilight trilogies and “Divergent.” I hope to introduce her to some of the classics like “The Outsiders,” “To Kill a Mockingbird” and “Catcher in the Rye” soon.

As a 37-year-old mother, I still love YA books. My favorites are “Hunger Games” and “To Kill A Mockingbird.” My fifth grade son is starting to find a passion for YA books. He also loves the Hunger Games trilogy and is finding that he enjoys sci-fi quite a bit. Joey is anxious for the day he can attend teen programs at the library, which are for those in grades 6-12.

The Kenton County Public Library offers teen programs at all three branches – Covington, Durr in Independence and Erlanger.  The branches offer Anima and Manga clubs, crafting programs, movie and book discussions, chess club, writing groups, movie nights, gaming events, jewelry making and much more. All of the programs are free. Each branch also has a teen space (Covington is currently being renovated) just for teens to hang out. They can play games, read books, have discussions, flip through magazines and socialize in this area that’s just for them.

So if you are a teen or know a teen interested in hanging with other teens and reading young adult materials check out our teen website or become a fan of our Teen Facebook page.  Check our catalog or  Good Reads for young adult books.

So what is your favorite YA book? Why?

This post was written by Gina Holt, PR Coordinator

Gina.holt@kentonlibrary.org

Welcome to the Library Blog

Welcome to the Kenton County Public Library Blog. I promise this won’t be boring and is totally worth the read. We will update the blog every Tuesday with posts about library materials and its services and relevant topics to the community. The posts will include topics on children’s, teens, adults, history and genealogy, outreach and more. Several of your favorite staff members will contribute to the blog.

We will also have fun contests and giveaways. In fact, let’s have one now. I have a cool Kenton County Public Library tote bag filled with goodies, including four tickets to the Cincinnati Museum Center (donated). Ways you can win:

1. Leave a comment here letting us know what you would like us to write about (required).

2. Become a fan of the Kenton County Public Library on Facebook and comment here that you did: http://www.facebook.com/KentonCountyPublicLibrary

3. Tell a friend about our blog through Twitter or Facebook and comment here that you did.

4. Subscribe to our blog.

You must do # 1 to be entered. Doing #2-4 will earn you extra chances to win. Enter to win by Monday, Oct. 1 at noon. Be sure to include your email address.

Good luck!