Public libraries look to partner with teachers

By LEANN BURKE
lburke@dcherald.com

JASPER — It’s back-to-school time, and the local libraries are in on the season.

Staff at the Jasper-Dubois County Public Library put together a teacher toolkit on the library’s website that shows teachers everything the library offers to augment class time. The library system covers three of the four Dubois County school corporations — Greater Jasper, Northeast Dubois and Southeast Dubois. The Huntingburg Public Library serves Southwest Dubois.

Jasper Branch Manager Beth Herzog-Schmidt and Library Experience Manager Jordan Schuetter spearheaded the initiative. The kit and the resources are available through the library’s website, http://www.jdcpl.lib.in.us.

“It’s all stuff we’ve had for a while,” Herzog-Schmidt said. “We just want to make sure teachers know we have it.”

The guide includes information on special teacher and student library cards, research databases and partnership opportunities between librarians and the classroom.

With a teacher card, teachers can check out a collection of up to 50 items for use in their classrooms. Teachers can also sign their students up for digital-access library cards, which gives students online access to the library’s collection of online databases that includes World Book encyclopedias. The library also has Overdrive, which gives users access to e-books and e-audiobooks, and RBdigital, which includes television shows in Spanish, test prep and British television shows.

The toolkit also talks about opportunities for field trips to the library and librarian visits to classrooms. Both have been common ways for the children’s librarians and the schools to partner, Schuetter said.

This year, the library is offering two new resources: book kits and the BeanStack app. Book kits include a classroom set of chapter books teachers can use in class. The library is also looking for ways to create classroom reading challenges through its BeanStack app, which launched this year and was used for the library’s summer learning program.

“The biggest thing is keeping that communication open and letting teachers know they can come to us,” Schuetter said.

The Huntingburg Public Library is also eager to partner with teachers in the Southwest Dubois County School Corporation. The library also maintains a list of databases students and teachers can use for research on its website, http://www.huntingburg.lib.in.us/index.html.

Teachers can also contact Huntingburg Library Children’s Librarian Lynn Hensley for information on library resources.




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