Tips to help encourage your children to read this winter

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By Carole Howard  | PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff

As we adapt to the darker days of winter, books can be even more popular companions for your children if you follow some or all of these tips:

• Set aside a specific time each day for reading. Read together and create time for children to read on their own. A nighttime reading routine is especially rewarding.

• Create a fun reading space in your home, such as a tent or fort with comfy pillows, bean bags and blankets — and, of course, a shelf or basket of books.

• Be a role model. If your kids see you reading, you’re setting a good example.

• Ensure reading materials are readily available in your home and carry them with you everywhere — including in your car and when you go to appointments where you might have to wait.

• Introduce youngsters to a book series to help keep reading interest high over time.

• Regularly take your children to the library to attend some of the many activities appropriate for their age and to pick out books. Allowing them to choose what they want to read helps nurture lifelong readers.

To be sure you don’t miss any of the free library activities available to you and your family, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month. Its streamlined format combines all the activities and events for children, teens and adults on one handy, two-sided page.

Flu season protocols

The curbside service that we began for COVID safety continues — and it’s also a healthful option in the cold and flu season. To save your energy and lessen germ exposure to other patrons, we recommend you use our curbside service — or add a name to your account authorizing that person to pick up items for you while you recuperate. Library hours:

• Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. 

• Tuesdays and Thursdays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 8 p.m.

• Saturdays, your library is open 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. 

Save the date for
Library Affair

Now that you’ve got your 2023 calendar on the go, we hope you will note the date of April 15 for the second annual Library Affair fundraiser for our building campaign to expand and renovate your library. 

This elegant event will feature a silent auction of different table settings designed by some of Pagosa’s most creative artists. If you want to decorate a table for this prestigious event, please call Cindi Galabota, library foundation director, at (970) 264-2209. 

Paws to Read tomorrow

Friday, Jan. 20, from 2 to 3 p.m., youngsters from kindergarten through fifth grade are invited to share their favorite books with Muppet, a therapy dog who loves listening to stories, at a free Paws to Read session. This is a great way for beginning readers to build confidence.

Gaming tomorrow

Enjoy free all-ages video gaming on the Xbox 360 Kinect tomorrow, Friday, Jan. 20, from 3 to 4 p.m.

Makerspace on Saturday

Kids, tweens and teens are invited to a free Makerspace session on Saturday, Jan. 21, from 11 a.m. to noon, when we’ll provide the materials so you can build, design and create.

Pokemon Club
on Saturday

If you love Pokemon, this club is for you. Bring your cards to a fun, free all-ages event on Saturday, Jan. 21, from 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. when you can play games with others who feel the same way. 

Children’s Spanish class 

Join us next Monday, Jan. 23, from 3 to 4 p.m. for a Spanish class for kids aged 6 to 11 to help youngsters learn and improve their Spanish.

Dungeons and Dragons 

Next Tuesday, Jan. 24, from 3:45 to 5:30 p.m., join our Dungeons and Dragons game free for teens and young adults. Registration is required because space is limited. Contact the library to join. 

One more online author talk this month

On Tuesday, Jan. 31, at noon, we’ll meet with Randall Munroe, creator of “XKCD: What If,” a webcomic of romance, sarcasm, math and language. This session is part of our free online virtual series featuring New York Times bestselling authors and thought leaders giving live, professionally moderated book discussions you can view on your computer, tablet or smartphone with Internet access. You also have an opportunity to ask questions. Go to https://pagosalibrary.org/adult-services/ to learn more.

Homework and
tutoring help

Our highly popular free homework assistance and elementary tutoring are available for students in kindergarten through fourth grade on Wednesdays from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. There is a registration packet for parents and guardians to fill out to enroll your child that you can get by emailing the library or coming in. This program has been a big hit because it helps build essential skills in core subjects. You still can register your child, but you may be put on a wait list. 

Family storytimes

Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for free in-person children’s stories, games and plenty of reasons to get up and move. 

ESL classes

Free in-person evening classes take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with 4 to 5 p.m. reserved for beginners and 5 to 7 p.m. for both intermediate and advanced students. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

PALS/GED adult
education 

Mark is available for his free PALS sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to help with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. No registration is required. 

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Judy will help you with basic questions relating to computers, smartphones and tablets, and also provide assistance in accessing any of the library’s online resources. You do not need an appointment for these drop-in sessions. 

Writing challenge 

A new all-ages writing challenge was posted Jan. 16 on the library’s Facebook page. We hope you will challenge your creativity by participating in this free activity.

Downloadable books 

CloudLibrary has a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audiobooks for all ages, and accessing this free digital collection is very easy. You just need to download the cloudLibrary app, answer a few simple questions, select AspenCat Union Catalog for the name of your library, then enter your library card number and four-digit PIN. You are now ready to browse, borrow and read e-books and audiobooks using cloudLibrary. Library staff are happy to help you set up your device if you need assistance.

Books on CD

“One Last Secret” by Adele Parks features a lady working for an escort service whose secret may be revealed. “Tom Clancy Red Winter” by Marc Cameron is a Jack Ryan adventure. “Desert Star” by Michael Connelly features LAPD Detective Renee Ballard. “Double Holiday” and “One Royal Holiday” are romance stories. “Last Holiday” stars Queen Latifah. “White Christmas” is the holiday classic. 

Nonfiction

“Your Income Tax 2023” is a J. K. Lasser guide that includes tax changes from the Inflation Reduction Act. “Healthy Brain Zone” by Don Colbert, M.D., is a guide to help you reduce your risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia. “Eco Crafts” by Susan Wasinger contains 30 eco-friendly projects for your home. “The Stress Prescription” by psychologist Elissa Epel is a plan to turn your stress into a strength. “Bone Broth Breakthrough” by Kellyann Pettrucci offers lifestyle recommendations for women’s health concerns. 

Large print westerns

“Ralph Compton The Guns of Wrath” by Tony Healey is a Gunfighter series adventure. “Sons of Thunder” by William W. and J.A. Johnstone is a book five in the Slash and Pecos series. 

Other novels

“The Lipstick Bureau” by Michelle Gable is a story inspired by true World War II events at a spy agency. 

Donations 

Many thanks to Susan and Terry Arrington as well as Linda Sue King for their generous monetary donations. 

When we are open, material donations are accepted for the Friends of the Library at the front desk — not through the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please. 

The Friends take fiction published in 2013 or newer and nonfiction that is 2018 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Quotable quote 

“Allow yourself to be awed by life … you might find yourself living for a very long time and prospering.” — William Shatner, Canadian actor best known as Captain Kirk in the Star Trek series.

Website

For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, books on CD and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at https://pagosalibrary.org.