Summer Empowerment Tips from a Black Librarian

Summer time Empowerment Ideas from a Black Librarian


This submit was co-authored by Janise Parker and Tiffany Cannon, Lead Library Media Specialist in a public college district.

A couple of days in the past, my son and I handed by a famend bookstore, and he requested, “Is {that a} library?” I defined the similarities and variations between a bookstore and a library, with an emphasis on the low price and/or free sources that libraries provide to group members.

As I mirror on that dialog, I take into consideration what it means in relation to the “summer season slide.” The summer season slide is a phrase that usually refers to the truth that Okay-12 college students could lose a few of the data gained all through the varsity yr when they aren’t engaged in studying actions in the course of the summer season months. One of many main contributors to the summer season slide is restricted entry to and use of useful sources for school-age youth. Returning to the pivotal position native librarians play locally, utilizing the sources they provide to members of their respective communities is one strategy to combatting the summer season slide.

Certainly, my mother used to take my sister and me on Saturday journeys to the native library partially as a consequence of its low-cost nature. I bear in mind experiencing emotions of awe and surprise as I picked books, audio tapes, and so forth. associated to my pursuits, likes, and curiosities (it was my first introduction to the film Roots!). It is a custom my sister continues to hold on together with her household, and she or he is intentional about serving to her youngsters select books that affirm their values, pursuits, and identities as good Black women. The truth is, contemplating the current bans pertaining to books in regards to the racist historical past of the U.S. and the richness of Black tradition (in addition to different marginalized teams) in U.S. faculties, the library can be utilized as one device to offset these discriminatory actions in order that our youngsters don’t endure. Data is energy!

My expensive colleague/buddy is likely one of the few Black librarians within the U.S., so I’ve invited her to share a number of ideas for the way households can reap the benefits of the sources provided by public libraries and interact in sustained summer season studying by different associated efforts. The objective, then, is to equip youth and households with instruments that may contribute to their ongoing progress and cultural wealth.

Tiffany Cannon, used with permission

Tiffany Cannon, Lead Library Media Specialist

Supply: Tiffany Cannon, used with permission

5 Ideas for Summer time Studying

1. Make a schedule for taking your youngsters to the library over the summer season.

Making a schedule of library visits can provide youngsters one thing enjoyable and thrilling to stay up for all through the summer season. Elementary-aged youngsters normally love visiting their college library in the course of the college yr and the identical might be stated for older youngsters when books captivate their pursuits and likes. Couple the journey with an ice cream day and that ought to seal the deal! If transportation is a matter, native libraries could present e-book mobiles and group outreach packages for all ages.

2. Seize a e-book and skim alongside together with your youngsters outdoors.

It’s at all times nice for youths to see caregivers studying with them. Take a couple of minutes out of your summer season enjoyable to learn your individual e-book, whereas your youngsters are studying their books. Set a great instance by displaying them how superior studying might be for the entire household.

3. Audiobooks could be a enjoyable approach for the household to take pleasure in a narrative collectively.

There are some superior web sites that can assist you to hearken to free books. Amazon, Audible, SORA, and so forth. are nice sources for audiobooks as effectively; and you’ll ask your public librarian about methods to take a look at their audiobook assortment.

4. Present a technique for monitoring summer season studying.

Many public libraries have summer season studying packages that embrace giving youth prizes after they learn a sure variety of books. As a caregiver, contemplate monitoring the books your baby reads by having them write them down and/or submit the go surfing the wall once they end a brand new title. It’s also possible to plan to have an ice cream day or pizza celebration for the household when your baby reaches a sure variety of books by the top of the summer season!

5. Take a e-book “journey.”

Studying books about historic locations or fictional tales about locations close by or close to trip areas may also help college students join studying to actual life; this creates dynamic conversations, experiences, and distinctive alternatives for essential discussions.

Concluding Ideas: Supporting Black Youngsters

With the summer season months upon us, you will need to word that marginalized college students from low-income backgrounds usually tend to expertise the “summer season slide” in comparison with their middle-class friends. Black households could also be notably dedicated to eradicating the summer season slide, irrespective of sophistication variations, as a consequence of oppressive college constructions that forestall Black college students from realizing their full potential (Lynch, 2002). Encouraging Black youngsters to learn is essential for his or her academic lives and futures as leaders and group members. Listed below are a number of websites that promote Black historical past books and books for kids and youths of coloration:


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