Category Archives: Library Services

WCPLtn is Books…And much more!

appiconBy Erin Holt, Teen Librarian

Libraries have become so much more than just books in the last few years — many are morphing into community centers, providing resume assistance, career centers, makerspaces, and learning labs in addition to the physical book collection. And online collections including eBooks and eAudiobooks are all the rage (we love our OverDrive READS that’s for sure!)  allowing patrons to access materials right from their tablet or smartphone. This is HUGE this day and age with everyone being on the go! Waiting in the checkout line at the grocery store, browse your OverDrive app and download a book and begin reading instantly! It’s genius and a service that we’re proud to offer  it to our patrons!

In fact, OverDrive is so popular that they have recently made some updates to their app to make things go a bit smoother for everyone! Check out the updates here

photo.jpg But we also wanted to highlight that our Library values books, and our librarians go to great lengths to constantly keep our physical collection of books, DVDs, and magazines up to date. In addition to all of that however, our director, Dolores Greenwald,  hosts a monthly television show ‘Not Just  Books‘ that airs on YouTube. The show focuses on what other services we provide both IN the library and outside the library! Wondering what the Friends of the Library are up to? How we’re celebrating the Sesquicentennial (hint: we wrote a fabulous book!), and what our new Teen Librarian is up to? Click on over

And be sure to bookmark this page —  we’ve got new episodes every month!

And as always, give us a call if you have questions — 615-595-1243

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Ancestors Found Behind Locked Doors

shelvesBy Dorris Douglass, Special Collections Librarian

Yes the Special Collections Department does actually have some “locked doors,” but we the staff bring out the material for you, our patrons, to look at “ to your heart’s content.” One set of locked doors are the glass front cabinets in the Williamson Room where we have our Civil War collection of pre-1900 books about the Civil War and by the participants themselves.

Another locked door is our Manuscript Room where we house the Whitley Collection and other collections. Edythe Rucker Whitley (1900-1989) was a professional genealogist in Nashville from 1919 to the early 1970’s. She kept personal carbon copies of the research she did for various clients over a period of more than five decades. She also kept contemporary newspaper clippings of obituaries and articles on World War II soldiers. Helen Sawyer Potts later purchased this vast collection and donated it to the Williamson County Public Library in 1983. The collection consist of 538 acid free boxes containing three note books each .

 

To find out door if your last name is mentioned in the Whitley Collection go to the Library Web page and type your name into the catalog search box in the upper right hand corner of the web page.  The Whitley Collection is usually the last entry to come up, if the name is there.

For example, if you type in Mangrum (a good old Williamson County name) entry number 5 will say “Edythe Rucker Whitley Collection: Box 227.” Try typing in your last name, or as we genealogist call it “surname,” and come to Special Collections. And if you are under 50 years old, you will also learn what a carbon copy was before the days of Xrox and photo copiers.

Supporting School Age Children and their Reading at Williamson County Public Library Children’s Section

By Liz Arrambide, Children’s Librarian

Frequently Asked Questions

What resources are available at the library to help my children find books that they can read?

Answer: We have lists available in the Children’s Section that are some of our favorite books for different grade levels. Feel free to ask us where they are. These are also available on our website. Click on our Kids page. On the right you’ll see “Let’s Read Books Lists”. This will link you to lists of books by grade level.

My child is reading at a specific reading level. How can I find books with that reading level and are your books color codes by reading level?

Answer: Many schools use Accelerated Reader (AR) reading levels. The child takes a STAR test on the computer. AR reading levels are given in two numbers such as 3.2. The first number is the grade level.   In this case the child is reading at a third grade reading level. The second number is the month. This child is reading at a third grade, second month reading level. We do not have the books color coded by reading level.

You can use our on-line catalog to find books by AR Reading Level.

  1. Go to our website: http://lib.williamson-tn.org/
  2. On the left put your cursor on “Find books and more”.
  3. Click on “Classic Catalog”.
  4. In the first box that says “title”, use the down arrow and change it to read “ keyword”.
  5. Determine the interest level of your child. Select one of the following.
    1. LG (lower grades) Kinder thru 3rd grade
    2. MG (middle grades) 4-8th grades
    3. MG+ (Middle Grade Plus) 6-8th grades
    4. UG (upper grades) 9-12 grades
  6. Write the AR in capital letters. Then enter the interest level also in capitals. Then write the numeric level. So I would write: AR LG 3.2 and up comes a list of all the books at that level.
  7. You can limit it by Selecting Children’s. Then click on “modify search”. Put a check on” limit search to available items”. Select the “location” you want.
  8. This method works fairly well. Sometimes books that are at other reading levels also are pulled up. Double check that the BL (book level) is the one that you are looking for.

There is also good website: The AR Bookfinder

This site can also help you find the AR Book level for books that you have at home. You can also use it to find the AR reading level of the books on our reading lists.  They now also have the Lexile level.

My children prefer to browse looking for books. How can I help them find books that are not too hard or too easy?

Answer: Have the child open the book and read a page. The child holds up a finger for every word missed. If more than five words are missed on a page, the book is too hard. This is often called the 5 finger rule. You can also tell by how fast or slowly the child reads. If she is reading the text very slowly and not missing any words, it still could be hard for her to read a chapter book at this speed. Try a book a little easier.

At school my child has a DRA reading level. How do I find books at that reading level?

Answer:

  1. The DRA test is given by the teacher rather than by a computer test, such as the AR Star test. Here is a chart that gives the reading levels by various reading programs/tests.
  2. Here is an article that explains about how to find books using the DRA level.

How do I find a book using Lexile Reading Levels?

Answer:

  1. Here’s a good article.
  2. This website finds books according to Lexile.
  3. In the Williamson County Library Catalog follow the directions of #3 above.  Instead of putting in an AR Reading level, write the number of lexile followed by Lexile. So if you write 830 Lexile you will get a list of books that we own at that level.

My child is struggling with the basics of reading. How can I help him learn to read?

Answer: There is an excellent website named Progressive Phonics.  It has a systematic collection of books that teach you how to instruct your child. The books are in color. They are funny and have parts for you to read aloud and for your child to read out loud.

What are some fun ways to learn the words they don’t know?

Answer:

  1. Notebook: You can keep a notebook and offer to write down the words that your child doesn’t know. This way you know what patterns need to be taught or reviewed. If you need to, you can look them up on the Progressive Phonics website.
  2. Play Memory: Make 2 flash cards on index cards for each of 10-15 words. Mix the cards up and turn the cards over. Each person takes a turn, flipping over two cards at a time. When the person finds a pair, he keeps them until the end of the game. The person with the most pairs at the end of the game, wins.
  3. Personal Speller: Make on a computer or in a notebook, a personal speller. This is a list of words in alphabetic order that the student has trouble understanding or spelling. This helps the student learn to read and spell the words and is very handy to have for writing assignments. This works well for older students.
  4. Post words that are being learned on the refrigerator or on a dry eraser board.
  5. For difficult words or word patterns, find a little tune to use as a memory devise. The B-I-N-G-O part in the song Bingo works well for the “ight” word family.
  6. For words that may be difficult to learn, may try writing the word using art supplies. Words like “though” might be hard to learn, but fun to do in crayon, glitter and glue. Spending the time on each letter might help make a connection. This can be hung on a cabinet, so it is easily seen.

My child is reading above grade level. How do I find books that are appropriate for his/her maturity?

Answer: We have grade level lists. These books are appropriate even for younger children. We often suggest lists that are above the grade level that match their reading level.

We know our child’s reading level. Does she/ he have to read at that level all the time?

Answer: Particularly children who are reading above their grade level find that they like to read at different reading levels. Sometimes they will read books that their peers are reading. Sometimes they enjoy quick, fast reads. Other times they want a challenge. It is good for students to read at various levels. This way they’ll read books that are meant for their age group as well as enjoy the challenge.

My child’s teacher says that although he is in third grade, he reads at an eighth grade reading level. How do I find appropriate books?

Answer: This is a challenge. One way to approach it is to find books at the next reading level up. So in this case, it would be fourth grade. If he stretches up to eighth grade, he’s going to miss a lot of great books and be in material that he’s not ready for. Going through the fourth grade and then the fifth grade lists, he’s going to have a lot of fun and occasionally will find a more challenging read and enjoy it. Another great resource is The Volunteer State Book Award lists. These are books and authors that are selected by librarians across the state for their great writing and have been published in the last few years. The kids vote on their favorites at the end of the year. We keep lists from preceding years, because these books are still great books and we have lots of copies.

I want to read out loud to my kids. What are good books to read?

Answer: Parents often find that it helps to read one grade level above where the children are. This way, they are exposed to ideas and vocabulary that the parent can explain.

If you need help, feel free to ask the Children’s and Young Adult library staff. They’ll be glad to make suggestions. Have a great adventure!

 

News from our Teen Department

ErinHWe are pleased to announce that Erin Holt is the new Teen Librarian at the Main Library in Franklin. Erin brings with her a Masters in Library Science from Queens College (New York), experience working with teens at the New York Public Library, a love of all things social media, a flare for collection development, and fresh and exciting programming ideas for the teens and tweens of Williamson County. You may know Erin if you’ve stopped by the Reference desk, as she has been with WCPLtn for the past 4 years. Erin can’t wait to connect with the teens both in person and online with various programming initiatives set to launch this year. First up? The new “Imagination Station,” which includes Nintendo Wii, Minecraft, Lego Mindstorm, and other multi-media programs. Between this and other upcoming ideas, Erin plans to turn the Teen Department into a community hub for Williamson County teens. Keep yourself in-the-know & follow @wcplteen14 on Twitter. See you at the Library!

Dogs in the Library!

Dog_with_book_5516202508By Betty Kirkeminde, College Grove Branch Manager

Every Thursday afternoon, there is a dog in the College Grove Community Library. In libraries across the country, you can find the same scene, children reading to friendly, tail-wagging dogs. The atmosphere is relaxed. Reading to a dog is fun!

For some children, it is more than just a novel experience. Reading ability, like any new skill, takes practice. For beginning and struggling readers, reading aloud to adults or classmates can be stressful. Reading to a trained therapy dog takes away the stress – the dog is a non-judgmental listener. The child can relax with the dog and focus on reading.

Two recent studies by the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine showed improvements of as much as 30% in reading fluency when children were paired with reading therapy dogs.

A five week study by Tufts University found that reading to a dog improved children’s reading ability and attitude toward reading.

Those involved in reading therapy programs find that children who participate are more comfortable reading aloud and read more often. As their literacy skills improve, they look forward to reading.

Two branches of the Williamson County Public Library system have reading therapy dogs who visit regularly. Children of all ages and reading abilities are invited to read to one of our reading dogs.

Betsy or Darby, who are certified by Therapy Dogs International as Tail Waggin’ Tutors, will be at the College Grove Community Library on Thursdays at 2:00 pm during July.

Reuben or Sadie, registered Reading Education Assistance Dogs, are at the Nolensville Public Library one Saturday each month. Their next visit will be on Saturday, July 26, from 1:00 to 3:00 pm.

Please check the library’s website, wcpltn, or call the branch for updates to the schedule.

Introducing InterLibrary Loan

By Lindsay Roseberry, Reference Librarian

Did you know that if we don’t have a book in our collection we can get what you want other ways? Let us tell you about Interlibrary Loan.

We offer Interlibrary Loan to all of our patrons. You can request up to 12 books per year per card. It generally takes a couple of weeks, but sometimes it could be longer. We search in our Tennessee Library database, which searches all the public libraries in Tennessee, and two universities. If the book is not listed there we can search throughout the United States (this is where it may take a little longer to get the book.) Due dates are set by the lending library and there is usually sufficient time to read the book. Sometimes we are able to ask for a book to be renewed.   Keep in mind that there is a $.50 fine per day the book is overdue, so it is always best to request a renewal before the due date.

Two important pieces of information: when we notify you a book is here (either by email or phone), you have 5 days to pick up the book. If you don’t make it within those 5 days, the book will be returned and your library card/account will be charged$1.00 for a non-pick up fee.

We also understand if you want a book and all we have are e-audio or e-books. Consider Interlibrary Loan as an alternative.

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