Even though I have prepared myself for what is to come, it still hits me; nothing is better than walking through two plain-old doors to be met with rows upon rows of books. Just books. Oh, and I cannot forget about that wonderful, delightful smell coming from said books that is a mixture of ink, paper, and the infinite possibilities. I bet you have a specific image in mind. Although it sounds like I’m explaining a favorite book store, I am in fact talking about a library.
Oh yes, the library.
Have you been to one? Please say yes. If you have not, I suggest you pull up a map on the internet or ask the people you know if there is one in the general area of your house. If you are not visiting a library at least once every couple of months then I’m sure you are missing out.
Let’s list some great things every library offers:
- You can borrow books for free. Free. All you have to do is sign up for a library card and BAM! Think of all the worlds you can get sucked into…
- You can also browse through a bunch of magazines. All the libraries I’ve been to are subscribed to popular magazines. Now you can check out your favorite celeb’s interview or the latest recipe without spending the four-something bcuks.
- Various machines you may or may not have at home. Libraries offer computers, printers, internet and copiers. I know the majority of the population has these things at home, but you never know when something decides not to break…
- A quiet place. When I want to study or get some homework done, I prefer silence so I can keep my concentration.
Here are some other things libraries can offer:
During different times of the year, the libraries around me offer events for certain groups of people to get together. They’ve had movie nights, game nights, and writing clubs. Most of these things are free too, so you don’t have to worry about spending money.
Because a library is a popular place, some people may offer their tutoring services. Last year, I noticed that someone was offering four classes to help prep for the math section of the SAT. I only noticed because I had been preparing for the SAT and never knew! Again, this class was free; take the chance while you can!
- Summer Reading
Every summer, each library branch has a summer reading program. (Usually, it’s broken up by different age groups.) You record the amount of books or pages you read over your summer break and get little incentives for reaching certain goals. At the end, there is also a little party (with food!) where all the participants get together and celebrate.
I bet the library is looking a little more convincing now. Guess what? I actually don’t visit my public library on a regular basis either. I think I’m a different story, though, because I have a bunch of books in my room that already need to be read. But that doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy going!
Also, please note that schools also have libraries. They might not offer or have the same opportunities that your public library does, but it’s still a reliable place. I also volunteer in my school’s library. Schools have few librarians, even ones that have to go back and forth between schools in the district due to budget cuts. I help my librarian out by helping sort books, re-shelve them and tidy things up. I’m also able to choose what books the school buys! [How awesome is that?!] I enjoy my time in the library, and I’m earning community service hours for it.
I’m gonna give you a second to take that all in.
Now think about it again.
The library is a pretty awesome place, don’tcha think?