The best New Year’s gift for your children: their own library

Do you know the value of a home library for your youngsters? Research shows that kids who have books in their home have improved vocabulary and overall reading performance; do better in math, science and social studies; perform better on standardized tests; and are more likely to go to college.
Those are impressive skills for your child to cultivate — and they are especially relevant now that Archuleta County kids have returned to school after the holidays.
Another valuable tip to help your child be successful in school and in life is reading aloud. You are stimulating language and literacy skills, as well as building motivation, curiosity and memory. Ever try to skip a page in your child’s favorite book? You’ll be caught every time.
Paige Shook, your early literacy librarian, can help you with reading to your child. She leads three free storytimes every week.
Wednesday from 10-11 a.m. is family storytime, with stories, songs and plenty of reasons to get up and move. This is an excellent way for kids of all ages to have fun while building the skills they need to become independent readers.
Saturday is baby storytime from 9:05 to 9:25 a.m., with a short session of stories, songs and fingerplays for children ages 0 to 12 months; and toddler storytime from 9:30 to 10 a.m., with stories, songs and fingerplays plus open play afterwards. Both these sessions help you learn how to include literacy skills in everyday family life.
Paige also would be happy to help you select books for home reading and a home library for your child. As we start the new year, this may be a good time for parents, grandparents and other relatives to make a personal resolution to help build home libraries for your loved ones.
Library closure
Your library will be closed Monday, Jan. 15, for Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday.
Legal clinic tomorrow
A free legal clinic via computer link for people with no attorney takes place tomorrow, Friday, Jan. 12, from 2 to 3 p.m.
Volunteer attorneys will answer questions, help fill out forms, and explain the process and procedure for legal issues in the areas of family law, civil litigation, property law, probate law, collections, appeals, landlord-tenant law, veterans benefits and civil protection orders.
No registration is required. Everyone will be helped on a first-come, first-served basis. Walk-ins are welcome.
All-ages gaming tomorrow
Join us tomorrow, Friday, Jan. 12, from 2 to 3:15 p.m. for a free all-ages gaming session where you can enjoy video gaming on Wii and Xbox 360 Kinect with your friends and family.
LEGO Club
Kids ages 6-12 are invited to bring your imaginations — LEGOs are provided — this Saturday, Jan. 13, from 11 a.m. to noon for the free LEGO Club.
Teen gaming
Free teen gaming happens on Tuesdays from 4 to 5:30 p.m. for teens in the seventh through 12th grades. Enjoy Xbox 360 Kinect, Wii and snacks.
Teen writers group
Join us next Wednesday, Jan. 17, from 4 to 5 p.m. for our free teen writers meeting for seventh- through 12th-graders. This group’s interests include stories, poetry, graphic novels and fan fiction.
Computer/technology classes
Join us on Thursdays from 1 to 2 p.m. to learn a technology skill or application. Today, Jan. 11, is the basics of Internet searching. Jan. 18 will be the basics of Microsoft Excel. Jan. 25 will be the basics of malware threats and antivirus programs.
Family storytime
Every Wednesday from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for free great stories, fun songs and plenty of reasons to get up and move. This is an excellent way for kids of all ages to have fun while building the skills they need to become independent readers.
Baby storytime
Every Saturday from 9:05 to 9:25 a.m., join us for a free short session of stories, songs and fingerplays for you and your little ones. Learn easy tips on how to include literacy skills in everyday family life. Recommended for children ages 0 to 12 months.
Toddler storytime
Every Saturday from 9:30 to 10 a.m., join us for 30 minutes of free stories, songs and fingerplays with open play afterwards. Learn easy tips on how to include literacy skills in everyday family life.
Tech sessions
Drop in with your technology questions on Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to noon and Thursdays from 2 to 4 p.m.
Adult education
Our PALS program — Pagosa Adult Learning Services — takes place three days a week: Mondays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. plus Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4:30 to 7 p.m. Come to your library to get help with high school equivalency, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more.
Activities calendars
To be sure you don’t miss any of the free activities available to you and your families at your library, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month. There are three versions — kids, tweens/teens and adults.
DVDs
“Faith and Family Holiday Pack” is a three-disc, 10-movie holiday package. “The Drop Box” is a documentary about a South Korean pastor and his heroic efforts to save abandoned babies. “Bing Crosby Rediscovered” explores the life and legend of this iconic performer. “The Great Alone” is a documentary about the comeback of a champion dog sledder in Alaska. “The Brain” is a six-episode series featuring neuroscientist David Eagleman. “The Mask You Live In” follows boys and young men negotiating the definition of masculinity. “Dragon Ball” contains all four of these action movies. “Game of Thrones” is the complete seventh season.
Mysteries and thrillers
“Dead Ground in Between” by Maureen Jennings is a Detective Inspector Tom Tyler mystery set in England in 1942.
Novels
“The Perfect Girl” by Gilly Macmillan starts with a disruptive incident at a recital. “The Life She Was Given” by Ellen Marie Wiseman reveals the power of family secrets beginning with life in a Depression-era traveling circus.
Large print
“Someone to Wed” by Mary Balogh is a Westcott historical romance.
Programmed Nooks
We have nine free Nooks and three free tablets programmed for your e-reading pleasure. The eight adult e-readers contain either fiction or nonfiction bestsellers. The four youth e-readers contain books for children, juniors and young adults.
Downloadable e-books
Current New York Times bestseller downloadable e-books are being added regularly to our free 3M Cloud Library. Access them by clicking on the 3M Cloud Library icon on the home page of our website. While there, browse through a multitude of other adult, juvenile and children’s books, both bestsellers and classics in many genres.
Downloadable films
For your viewing pleasure, we offer IndieFlix, a free streaming movie service that gives you unlimited access to more than 7,500 award-winning and popular independent shorts, feature films and documentaries from more than 50 countries — on your device, PC or Mac, with no apps needed.
Access IndieFlix through the Downloadable Content icon on the library’s website. Use “Quick Pick,” the discovery tool that lets you sample movies like you would music.
Thanks for our donors
For their generous monetary donations, we are grateful to Brian and Becky Savage, in memory of Mary Savage, and to Rick and Lynne Stinchfield. For books and materials this week, we thank several anonymous donors.
Quotable quote
“I’ve learned how important it is to sit and eat with other people. While I was in space, I saw on TV one day a scene with people sitting down to eat a meal together. The sight moved me with an unexpected yearning. I suddenly longed to sit at a table with my family, just like the people on the screen, gravity holding a freshly cooked meal on the table’s surface so we could enjoy it, gravity holding us in our seats so we could rest.” — Scott Kelly, retired U.S. Navy captain, retired American astronaut and veteran of four space flights.
Website
For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, CDs and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at http://pagosa.colibraries.org/.

This story was posted on January 12, 2018.