The library: dead or alive?
As a homeschooling mom with a large family, finding frugal resources of substantial quality for our homeschool provides a unique challenge and requires a little creativity. The library was quite popular when I was a child, but technology has rampantly expanded and transformed over the past twenty years. In fact, most school-age children may not even know that the public library exists for everyone to access, and the physical book has been seeing a decline in sales for years. However, in our family, the public library provides a wealth of information and resources at no cost, and we use it just about once a week. Here are some of the reasons I enjoy using the library and I think you would too.
- Free Books
As an avid reader with limited space, the library can hold all the books you want to read while providing them for free. You don’t have to pay every time you want or need a new book. Simply check the catalog to see if the library has what you need, go pick it up, and turn it in when you’re finished. The time and effort to go to the local library pays for itself.
- Controlled Socialization
A common misconception people have about homeschoolers is that they have little to no interaction with the general public, and therefore, public schools provide the correct kind of socialization needed to function well in society. Obviously, I disagree. The weekly trip to the public library allows children another opportunity to interact with people of all ages and practice their social skills in real life with the bonus of the parents’ being able to guide, correct, and facilitate the interaction. My children are not afraid to ask the librarian for help because they have watched me do it and now can practice with mom watching, as well. The trip to the library can do that for you.
- Specialized resources
Oftentimes, libraries will have resources that you personally may not be able to procure. The public library may have subscriptions to online resources (such as ancestry.com or abcmouse.com), audiobooks, large encyclopedias and reference books, and much more that are not directly available or too expensive for any regular family to obtain at home. Therefore, accessing the library saves money, time, and resources.
There are many more advantages to using the library system. Hopefully, this has encouraged you to investigate your local library and see what you can use.
Until next time,