I practically grew up in the library when I was a child. I lived within walking distance of the Bellflower branch of the Los Angeles County Public Library. After I graduated from high school, I knew the library and the librarian there so well that she hired me to work there part time while I attended Cerritos Junior College near my home.
Now I live near two beautiful libraries within a few minutes from my home. Our cities here are close together, so I have access to both the Atascadero library and the Paso Robles Library, which is closer to me. Today I’ll give you a short tour of my local library. How does it compare to yours?
The back of this old library faces toward the new library. This building is now used to store archives of Paso Robles city history. People often sit on the front steps to rest or wait for someone. Sometimes people perform on these steps or make presentations during public events.
On one Monday afternoon a month, adults and children who have obtained free tickets for the event can work on a Lego project together. The result of their work then goes on display in the children's section. It looks like the January project was this ship you see on top of the reference section.
The library has many activities that encourage learning for children of all ages, as well as some for adults.
The children's section has spinners full of paperback books at the back, along with restrooms and drinking fountains for children.
As you enter the library itself from the lobby, this is what you will see. To the right is a bulletin board of announcements of importance to city residents. To the left is the desk for checking books in and out. If you walk past the bulletin board, you will see the cases full of recently acquired books that are in high demand. Beyond that you see the beginning of the children's section.
Once you pass the service desk, everything to the left is for the adults. Everything to the right is for children. . You already know you will find books, magazines, newspapers, and even audio books, music CDs and movies. Both the children's section and the adult sections have computers for the public to use. I do not have room here to show you everything in the library, but I will show you some things that might surprise you in these next photos.
You see this aquarium at the entrance to the children's department, but those out in the hallway can also see it. Look past the fish through the other side of the glass and you will see the checkout desk. As children watch the fish, they might have questions. It's only a short walk to a shelf with a book that might answer them. There's also someone sitting at the children's library desk who can help a child find the right book.
There is another computer section for older children who already have keyboarding skills and know how to use computers. These AWE computers are for children who still need to learn those things. The educational programs they contain are aimed at children ages 2-8. There are over 4,000 early learning activities and at least one of these two AWE computers is bilingual English/Spanish.
Working puzzles helps children think critically and develop spatial relations skills. It is also good for developing hand/eye coordination and fine motor skills. Children learn to solve problems as they try to figure out which puzzle pieces go together.
As you can see, that shelf to the left of the child is full of puzzles that children can use.
If you follow the light trail on the ceiling to the back, you will see the shelves of books for older children.
Note. I got the mother's permission before taking this photo.
This is the view from the parking lot. That giant oak tree provides shade in summer to those who sit and read on the benches beneath it. The doors lead into a lobby that has another door on the other side that faces the park and the old Carnegie Library there that we used until this new library was built. I'll show you a photo of that later in this post.
If you enter the library and turn left, you will pass the gift shop and be headed toward a conference room where city council meetings are held. The entrance to the main library is to your right as you enter.
I love how close the park is to the library. It's an easy walk back to your car to get your lunch if you want to picnic before or after your library visit. Or you can sit and read in the park after leaving the library and let your children visit the new park playground to work off their energy after being quiet in the library.
This shows most of the rest of the picture book section. On the front display shelf you see two book holders are empty. Perhaps some child just couldn't resist picking them up to look at and, maybe, check out to read at home.
Under that display shelf is where one children can find the magazines on their level. The adults have a separate place for their magazines in the adult section.