SUGAR GROVE – After realizing the amount of home-schooling families in the area, Sugar Grove Public Library’s youth services assistant Eli Dickter decided to create a Homeschool Meet Up where home-schoolers and their families could learn about the resources and services available to them at the library.
“It is mainly an opportunity for home-schooling parents to get together and share their experiences and learn from one another,” Dickter said. “I quickly became aware of how common home schooling is here in Sugar Grove by getting to know the families who frequent the library, particularly the ones who come to find materials to supplement their home-school lessons. As it became clear to me just how extensive the home-schooling population is, I thought it would be beneficial to organize a program just for them.”
Home-schooling families visit the library for a number of resources, including nonfiction and fiction books, the education connection backpack bundles covering seven different topics for kindergarten to second grade and third grade to fifth grade, and supplemental resources for the lesson plans, Dickter said.
Dickter hopes the Homeschool Meet Up will be an informative opportunity and will showcase the many ways the library can assist home schooling families.
For instance, library cardholders are able to place items on hold from the collection of 12 other libraries. Online databases also are available with a library card, Dickter said. The event will explore how home-schooling parents have the opportunity to find activities, boost their lesson plans and find books for their children all through online databases.
“This allows home-schooling families to draw from a larger pool of resources that includes more subjects and reading levels, so they can find the right lesson materials,” Dickter said. “And getting the right materials will be even easier upon [Multitype Automation Group in Cooperation’s] merging with [System Wide Automated Network] since members will have access to the collections of over 80 libraries.”
The merger with System Wide Automated Network is anticipated to be completed in May, Dickter said.
“I’m hoping parents leave with a new or refreshed understanding on how the library can aid them as an ally in their home-schooling journey,” Dickter said. “I also hope by sharing their experiences with one another, parents will gain new perspectives on home schooling, including tips, lesson ideas, materials, resources and enable them to enrich their own children’s education.”
Dickter added he would like himself and the staff to become more familiar with the necessities of home schooling.
“Additionally, I expect that this will be a valuable learning opportunity for myself and the library, as it will be a chance for us to become more acquainted with the home-schooling population and their needs,” Dickter said.
The Homeschool Meet Up at the Sugar Grove Public Library, 125 Municipal Drive, will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Jan. 6 in Meeting Room B.