Orange County library offers Common Core literacy book bags

Jan. 28, 2013 @ 06:30 PM

The main library in Orange County now offers special grab bags of books that support the public schools’ newly implemented Common Core Standards.

The library has offered literacy book bags since April 2010, but recently expanded the selection to include selections appropriate for students learning under the new standards.

“When the new school year began, we spoke to several teachers and media specialists from Orange County Schools and determined that there was a need for these bags,” said Mary Shaver, youth services librarian. “The Youth Services staff examined the Common Core State Standards, chose appropriate materials and worked at the end of 2012 to create the new bags.”

The Common Core sets clear standards in English language arts and math for students from kindergarten through high school. They’re intended to prepare students for college and a global working environment. They are meant to ensure students get a consistent education, even if they move to a new school system elsewhere in the United States.

Each bag contains 10 books on a subject, “carefully chosen by grade level,” Shaver said. “We selected books that present the topic in a variety of formats, making it accessible to many different learners. For instance, many of the new bags include graphic novels and hands-on science guides, in addition to traditional research resources. For the younger grades, there is an equal mix of fiction and non-fiction; for older grades, the bags contain mainly non-fiction materials.”

The bags can be checked out from the library for three weeks at a time. Although they contain multiple books, they count only as one checked-out item. One check-out renewal can be requested unless someone else has expressed interest in getting the same bag.

“We work in partnership with local learning communities,” Shaver said. “We are always looking for new ways to offer information. With the adoption of the Common Core State Standards, we saw an opportunity to offer quality learning materials to complement the curriculum and support teachers. Teachers, students and families who are looking to expand their knowledge of science and the real world can make cross-curricular connections using these bags.”

For information, visit Orange County’s main library at 137 W. Margaret Ln. or call 919-245-2532.

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On the Web: orangecountync.gov/library/literacybags.asp