May 30th, 2016

Summer Reading

2016_SR_sticker_reminder_finalSummer Reading is almost here! The Cecil County Public Library 2016 Summer Reading and Learning Program begins June 1 with kick-off events Saturday, June 4. It’s a fun, free, and educational way to stay academically engaged all summer long, and encourages children, as well as teens and adults, to read and explore topics they are interested in. (Note, “Read to Me” where participants tracked the number of books, is now part of the Kids Summer Reading program and all logs are completed by tracking time spent reading.)

If you’re like me, you know that students who do not participate in reading or educational activities began to “slide” further and further behind their peers and that each year of falling behind could lead to a student’s low academic achievement or dropping out of school. Summer reading is important because it helps combat this slide. Simply reading 4-5 books over the course of the summer may be powerful enough to prevent a decline in reading achievement skills.

Here are some quick tips to try this summer to keep the children and teens in your life reading, active and engaged all summer long:

-Visit the library. Check out books and participate in educational and fun programming.
-Let your kids and teens choose! Any kind of reading can help kids sustain or improve skills.
-Read every day.
-Ask questions about what they’re reading! Start a conversation and kids and teens can practice comprehension skills by talking about what they’re reading.
-Connect what they’re reading to activities. Going to the zoo? Read Life-Size Zoo by Teruyuki Komiya. Planning a picnic? Check-out Picnic by Emily McCully. You can also ask a librarian for crafts, recipes, and activities that can be done with your child based on the book they are reading.
-Bring books with you wherever you go. Whether you are waiting for an appointment or stuck in a traffic jam, reading books is a great way to pass the time.
-Don’t forget to write. Writing improves reading skills. Encourage your child to keep a journal, compose a story, or write a poem.
-Practice math and science skills at the library too! Check out topic-specific books and sign your kids up for our science-themed programming throughout the summer!

Stop in at any branch to learn more about the full list of summer events or to register for summer reading, which begins June 1 for all ages. Sign up at any branch or online:
www.cecil.ebranch.info/adults/summer-reading-programs/

What is your favorite summer read?


Tags: , , , , ,


May 9th, 2016

Plant Swap

PlantsIf you’re an avid gardener like me then this is your busiest time of year. It’s time to clean out your vegetable and flower beds, plan this year’s garden, and get your seeds started. When planning my garden I think about which plants worked well last year, which ones didn’t, what perennials need dividing, and where I need new plants.

One of the easiest ways to get free plants is to divide the ones you already have. One of the wonderful things about perennials is that as long as they are happy where they are they will come back year after year with very little maintenance on your part. But eventually they will get too big or start looking unkempt, and then it’s time to divide them. This will not only improve the health of the plant but give you extras you can use in your garden and share with other gardeners. I know I’d rather pass on an extra plant and give it a good home than, heaven forbid, throw it away!

But what if you’re looking for something new? One of the best, and cheapest, ways of adding diversity to your garden and trying new plants is to go to a plant swap. At a plant and seed swap gardeners bring their extra seeds, seedlings or plant divisions and trade them with other gardeners. It’s a great way to share plants and gardening experiences, and it’s free!
Whether you’re an experienced or beginner gardener you want to make the most of your garden. At CCPL we have an extensive collection of gardening books and magazines, but if you’re looking for the latest, most up-to-date information you might want to check out our collection of on-line magazines available through Zinio where you can download home and garden magazines like Birds and Blooms, Country Gardens and Organic Life. In addition, our Gardening, Landscape and Horticulture database contains magazine and journal articles for everyone from the novice gardener to the professional.

For more hands-on instruction you can find home and garden programs throughout the Cecil County Public Library system. Check online through our calendar or look in The Link, our library newsletter; available in branches, online or have it emailed to you for a first look at upcoming events.

On Thursday, May 12 from 6-8 pm the Elkton Library will hold its 4th Annual Plant Swap. And if you can’t make it to Elkton, the Perryville Library will be holding their 2nd Annual Plant and Seed Swap on Wednesday, May 25 from 6-8. We hope you can make it! This will be a wonderful opportunity to swap plants, seeds and experiences with other gardeners. Don’t miss the chance to try something new in your garden!

What’s your favorite perennial to share?


Tags: , , , , , , ,