Story by Diane Jolin
Literacy has always been important to me. That is one of the reasons I became a reading teacher. I would tell my students that to become good readers they would have to read. The more they read, the better readers they would become.
I grew up with parents who loved to read. My father read just about every book I brought home, even some of my college textbooks. We always had books around and at times my mother would have to tell us to quit reading and do our chores. We checked out books from our school library because we did not have access to a city library. We also received books as gifts. To me, reading is a necessity in my life. I do a lot of reading for pleasure.
In my own family both my daughters are readers. In our town we have a public library, a bookmobile, and a school library where they could check out books. As a reading teacher I was always encouraging them to take advantage of these opportunities.
My grandchildren love going to their local libraries. They check out a box of books and videos to take home every time. My oldest grandchildren went on date days with their other grandfather. On rainy days they would hang out at their local library. My youngest grandchildren enjoy their trips to the library with their mother. Having their own library card was exciting and my youngest grandson couldn’t wait until he was 6 to get his card like his older brother. Their library has an afterschool program they attend once a week during the school year. When they check out books at the public library they receive a printout stating what it would have cost them to purchase all the materials they had checked out. By the first week in September their cost would have been $1,600.
Libraries are so important. The economic and educational advantage they have for all families is priceless. Everyone has the opportunity to use these resources no matter who they are. Every library contributes to the quality of life in the community.