David Cherry's blog

An HCPL ESL Student Tells About Her Experience Learning English

Lives are changed in small and large ways every day at Harris County Public Library and libraries all over the world, Most of the time even we who work there don't see it. A student aces a chemistry test because she found a quiet place to study, a reluctant reader stumbles upon that book that fits like a second skin and begins a lifetime love of reading. A recently laid off oil worker brushes up on interview skills at a Workforce Solution program at his local branch and lands the job that turns into a career. So we were delighted recently when a student in one of HCPL's free ESL classes, Leonor Paez, wrote a lovely testimonial about her experience learning English and the many ways her volunteer tutor, Ann Sullivan, has helped her. Leonor has graciously allowed us to share her letter with you.

To learn more about HCPL's ESL and Adult Basic Education programs including how you can become a volunteer tutor, visit our Literacy & ELA page or call 713-274-6600.

 

 

 

Volunteer Deputy Voter Registrars Needed. Free Training at South Houston Branch, Monday, March 6.

Democracy is not a spectator sport. Here's a great way for you to get in the game and to help your neighbors do the same: BakerRipley and the Harris County Tax Office are hosting a Volunteer Deputy Voter Registrar Training session at South Houston Branch Library on Monday, March 6 at 5:45 p.m.

As a Volunteer Deputy Voter Registrar, you will assist eligible voters to register to vote. You must be 18 years of age, a U.S. citizen and a Texas resident. Complete requirements

West U. Branch Is Back!

West University Branch Library reopened Monday, so stop by, say hello, browse the stacks, use one of our new Windows 10 computers or just sit and read a magazine!

We thank all of our wonderful West U. customers for their understanding and patience. We thank the City of West University Place for its support, and we thank the City of Bellaire Library for its generous assistance during West U's renovations.

The library closed in November 2016 when the West University Place City Council approved funding for necessary renovations.  The upgrades bring the library into full compliance with new ADA and safety requirements.

A Portrait of Harris County in 50 Books: HCPL's Most Checked Out Books of 2016

Here are 2016's most checked out books at Harris County Public Library. Taken together, they paint a pretty good likeness of Harris County. That is to say, if all of you were squeezed into one body, you could do worse than using it as your online dating profile. Here is what the lists say about you: you like a little mystery in your life and are a bit of thrill-seeker; you like to eat, but you're watching your weight; your house, well, frankly, your house could use a little tidying up. Your kids are fond of stories with talking animals, dorks and wimps and they really, really, really like Mo Willems.

Want to know more? Keep reading.

 

Hatching Ideas: Chickens, Kids & S.T.R.E.A.M.

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? In the case of Harris County Public Library’s #ProjectPeep, neither. An Institute of Museum and Library Services/Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) grant came first. This spring, four HCPL branches will be raising chickens from scratch and kids will get to see science come alive, so to speak while they learn about egg incubation, life cycles, and hatching. Along the way there will be hands-on interactive programs like nesting box and coop building. Children and parents can even participate in training to learn all about caring for chicks. Some will have the opportunity to take home a Foster Chick for two weeks. Following a grand chick reunion party, the chicks will go to their permanent home at Blue Star Ranch.

Discover African American History @ HCPL

Some history we all know by heart. Those stories bring us together. They give us our common past, and show us how to change things to make a better future. There are also countless other stories waiting for you to discover them. This February, for African American History Month, we challenge you to search for those undiscovered stories and to find unsung African American heroes.

Like all explorers, you will need a little inspiration and maybe a little push to get you started, So we will have lots of African American History Month programs, special reading lists and more to spark your curiosity.

ALA Announces Youth Media Awards

The American Library Association announced its 2017 Youth Media Awards this morning. Here is a short selection of the winners. You can see the full list at ALA's website.

UPDATE: West University Branch Renovations

The holidays and severe weather across the country have delayed construction materials needed to complete safety and ADA compliance renovations at West University Branch Library. The City of West University Place is still optimistic that the library will reopen this spring.

Until then, you can continue to return HCPL materials and pick up holds at Bellaire City Library, or any other HCPL location.

eBook Collections to Help You Keep Your New Year's Resolutions

If we're not there already, we are fast approaching the time of year when our resolve to keep our new year's resolutions begins to flag. So, for all of us whose stick-to-it-ness has lost some of its stickiness, or whose promise to stop procrastinating has been put off indefinitely,  we've created some special OverDrive collections to help you to overcome inertia and inspire you to be the best you that you can be in 2017.

(For those, like me, who are thinking 2018 is your year, as well as for those of you who are just perfect the way you are thank you very much, we have a list of the Best Books of 2016 and more).

#ReadersUnite @ HCPL

This month, Harris County Public Library and libraries across the country are encouraging Americans to share what they are currently reading through social media using the hashtag #ReadersUnite.

That hashtag really says everything you need to know about this project. Libraries are calling on readers to connect with one another through social media to share their passion for books. The hashtag also speaks to the fact reading has a unique power to unify people of different worldviews because it fosters understanding--of the world, of others and of oneself. No matter where we stand, we can all agree that a little more understanding and a little more unity might be just what we all need.

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