Recent upgrades to the Caddo Hills Elementary Library hopes to introduce students to the idea that reading is more than just learning, it is something that can transform their lives.
Librarian Erica Johnson is excited about the changes that have been made to the library and the benefits they bring to her students.
The first thing you notice when you walk in is how bright and welcoming the space is. The walls have been painted a lighter color with bright signage clearly marking different areas.
Johnson stated that the goal is to not only make the facility more inviting, but more assessable. The Library is an open room format, but has been separated into a section for Kindergarten – first grade and older students.
Scattered throughout the library are cozy reading stations. A chair here, a bench there. There is even a loft in one corner. Johnson explained that they wanted the library to be more than just a place kids came to get a book.
“We want them to be comfortable here. We want them to stay and read.” She stated.
She added that they aren’t sticklers for keeping everything below a whisper either. The goal is to let kids get excited about reading.
Students have a new selection of books to choose from as well. Johnson spent the summer combing through the selection of books, pulling out titles that weren’t being checked out. A free book fair was held, giving the older books a new home.
The updated selection of books is grouped in different sections. The library also has a section for new books and suggested reads.
One of the most exciting updates is a section of books with QR codes on the front covers. Students can scan the QR code with an electronic device and read a digital version of the book.
This is just one example of the library using multimedia applications. The library also houses a computer lab and Johnson has a smart screen in the library as well she can use to make presentations.
Students are taking part in accelerated reading programs and the library is working to provide other learning opportunities throughout the year.
Johnson mentioned that some of the students are going on a field trip to Hot Springs where they will get to visit Books A Million. This will expose them to a bookstore and hopefully give them even more opportunities to read.
They are also planning a program where the kids can share some of the things they have read.