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Libraries - Feature Article

 Resources offered by Libraries
by Samantha Bise, Library Resources Intern - StageofLife.com

The primary focus of all libraries is to give patrons the access to information, in all formats possible. Libraries have both physical and digital resources to meet the needs of their varying patrons. Visit your library today to see what resources they have for you.

Books
Libraries were originally designed to house books. Naturally, that is still a part of what libraries do. They carry books in many categories, including children’s books, fiction, nonfiction, and reference. They also carry books in other formats, like audio books. Many libraries carry special collections and rare books.

Periodicals
Periodicals are any publications that come out on a regular basis. Some examples of periodicals are magazines, newspapers, scholarly journals, The World Almanac, and phone books. Libraries offer these resources because purchasing a monthly, quarterly, or yearly subscription to periodicals as an individual can be costly. Often times, patrons do not want or need every copy of a periodical, but rather one specific edition. Some libraries digitize periodicals, or bound many periodicals together and place them in their stacks. This is so patrons are able to view past periodicals in edition to current editions.

Movies and Music
In addition to the diverse categories of books, libraries also offer VHS tapes, DVDs, music tapes, and CDs. Patrons can save money by stopping at their local library for movies. Some libraries have extensive movie and music collections that are both educational and entertaining.

Interlibrary Loans
Interlibrary loans are a service most libraries provide for its patrons. Libraries form a sort of alliance with each other, so when one library does not carry an item a patron requests, a lending library will send it to the patron. This service is to assure that the patron is able to acquire whatever materials they request.

Microfilm
Sometimes information—writing, photographs, etc.—is reduced in size and can only be read with optical assistance. This is called microfilm. Libraries carry microform, often for educational and research purposes. A benefit of transferring media to microfilm is to save storage space.

Maps
Many libraries are a storage place for maps and globes. Patrons have access to these materials, and librarians can be of assistance when dealing with maps.

Archives
Libraries are the home to many archives. Archives are collections of important historical, cultural, or professional records, and the physical place that they are kept. These records are usually selected for long-term preservation. Patrons can usually access these archives with the assistance of a librarian or the library’s archivist.

E-readers/ E-books
A growing number of libraries offer electronic readers, like the Nook and Kindle, for patrons to borrow. This is more cost-efficient for libraries, and it assures that they stay on top of the digital revolution. Patrons seem to be responding well to this new addition to the resources libraries offer.

Electronic Reserves
Electronic reserves, or e-reserves, are primarily a resource used in academic libraries. Professors give librarians documents—essays, chapters from textbooks, etc. Librarians upload these documents to the e-reserves section of the university/college webpage, and students have free access.

Databases
Libraries purchase databases to benefit their patrons. Databases are an online collection of scholarly journals, published articles that cannot be found elsewhere, and countless other resourceful publications. These databases often contain an overwhelming amount of information, so librarians are trained to help patrons navigate through the various databases.

Technology: Computers, Printers, Internet, Copiers
Libraries strive to stay on top of advancements in technology. Patrons display a great need for items such as computers, printers, Internet, and copy machines. In addition to offering these forms of technology, libraries often times offer tech. support to accompany them.

Special needs resources—blind computers; deaf resources
Some libraries offer resources for patrons with disabilities are resources. For example, some libraries have the computer program called JAWS; JAWS is a program that helps the blind use a computer without using the entire keyboard. Contact your local libraries to find out if they have any available resources to help you or someone you know.

Librarians
One of the most vital and overlooked resources a library has to offer is its librarians. Librarians are trained to find information in any format, both inside and outside of their specific library. Librarians can help patrons find answers on any topic.

Study Rooms
Many libraries have quiet rooms that you can use and reserve to do work in, individually and as a group.

Programs and Workshops
Libraries are the home of lifelong learners. Libraries feel it is their duty within the community to offer additional forms of education where they see fit. Libraries often hold classes on new technology. In addition to libraries educating the public, libraries invite other professionals into the library to educate patrons on various topics.

Special Events
Libraries hold many events within the community—bake sales, book sales, story-time, puppet shows, author visits and signing, book clubs, workshops, and more. Contact your library to find out their event schedule.

Check with your local library to see what specific resources they offer. If you are looking for a specific item, visit http://www.worldcat.org/ to check the union catalog of libraries around the world. Libraries work together to service the public, so there is nothing your librarian cannot help you find.

View all Free Educational Resources on StageofLife.com
View all Library Resources on StageofLife.com


We encourage you to walk into your local library, take advantage of their free services, and share your experience here on StageofLife.com...

Share your library experience on StageofLife.com

Literacy Partnership - Libraries

Library Resources

Library Resources on StageofLife.com

As a free educational literacy initiative, StageofLife.com features information, recommendations, and resources about libraries below.  From blogs about libraries to the challenges and opportunities facing libraries today, you'll want to explore the below information, but more importantly, visit your local library and share your experience here on StageofLife.com.



We encourage you to walk into your local library, take advantage of their free services, and share your experience here on StageofLife.com...

Share your library experience on StageofLife.com

 

Educational Resources and Free Lesson Plans

Free Writing Resources for Students

The below Stage of Life teen writing contests, teen trend reports, etiquette Q&A, and teacher resources have been mentioned by...

Our writing contests mentioned by TIME.com
Our Teen Trend Report mentioned by MarketWatch Our etiquette resources mentioned by FOX Business Educator tips mentioned by Mashable

 

With over half a million teachers, professors, teens, college students, and parents visiting StageofLife.com each school year, we make it a priority to create the best free writing resources for students and teachers.  We are a grassroots writing initiative founded with a mission to get people of all ages writing, and in particular encouraging students to write outside of the classroom...

Teen Writing Contest

National Student Writing Contests

  • Encourage your students to enter free, monthly national writing contest for high school students and college students.
  • StageofLife.com once hosted the world's largest international writing contest for high school students and college students.  Our essay winners have received mentions by the media including TIME.com, Mint Education, and more.
  • Essay contest topics dealt with real-world issues.
  • Great practice for AP Test, SAT test, college essay writing, and more.
  • View Details, Summaries and more About Our Writing Contests
  • View Participating Authors who work with Stage of Life on our Student Writing Contests
 

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National author support for StageofLife.com 

Participating Authors

  • Question:  What do internationally published authors Susannah Cahalan, Richard Louv, Kimberly Rae Miller, Elyn Saks, and Andrew Soloman all have in common?
  • Answer:  They've all collaborated with StageofLife.com to support our grassroots international writing community.

Explore the dozens of published authors that have worked with us.  We're proud of the support these literary greats have put in the digital literacy mission of StageofLife.com...


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  Contact Us if you know an author or celebrity who has writing advice for teens or would like to donate a signed copy of their book.
 
Word of the Day - Vocab Exercise
 

Word of the Day

  • We featured a new vocab word each day
  • Use our Word of the Day as inspiration for a personal essay or blog post on StageofLife.com
  • Teachers and educators can integrate the vocabulary in their classroom activities or ask the students to use the word in a free-write activity.
StageofLife.com's word of the day
 
Classroom writing exercises and ideas
 

Notes to the Teacher


Notes to the Teacher - Writing Exercises
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 Homeschool Writing Resources

 Homeschooling Writing Resources

  • Our writing resources are great for the classroom, but if you're a homeschooling student or parent, check out our free, homeschooling writing resources.
  • Writing contests, educational resources, and homeschooling resources are updated here...
Homeschooling Writing Resources
 
 Free classroom poster

Get "Writer" Classroom Poster - OUT OF STOCK

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  • We only charge for the shipping and handling fee
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Introduction to Blogging Lesson Plans

Introduction to Student Blogging

  • Get the 101 on blogging
  • Digital literacy - why blogging is important for the classroom
  • Our Blogging Lesson Plans include activities such as...
    1. Blogging Basics lesson plan
    2. Values & Beliefs lesson plan
    3. Reflection & Wisdom lesson plan
    4. Life stage interview lesson plan
    5. Food, Health & Writing lesson plan
    6. Heroes lesson plan
    7. Teen stress lesson plan
Blogging lesson plans on StageofLife.com
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Mentor Texts and Essay Examples

Mentor Texts

  • Use our past student winners as good examples of essay writing, i.e. Mentor Texts
  • Our teen writing winners provide excellent essay examples of authentic voice and utilizing a stylistic point of view
  • Read past writing contest winners and finalists by visiting our Teen Trends reports
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Examples of good essay writing -- mentor texts
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Teen Trends 

Teen Trend Reports

  • Over 800,000 teenagers, college students, and teachers visit StageofLife.com each year to either read or submit an essay.
  • Because of these visits, we are able to pull together full teen trend reports from our national writing contests and survey results on topics ranging from sports to politics to nature to bullying and more.
  • You'll also find in each report links to the relevant student essays, all grouped by topic.
  • View Teen Trends

  View StageofLife.com Teen Trend Reports
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Teen Writing Workshops

Writing Conferences and Workshops for Teenagers


  Teen writing conferences and workshops
Contact Us to add your Writing Conferences or Workshop to our list
 

 Essay Writing Prompts

Writing Prompts

  • Are you looking for ideas on though-provoking writing prompts for your Creative Writing, English or Language Arts classes?
  • We have scores of writing prompts that deal with real-world issues important to teens
  • Each prompt came from one of the previous Stage of Life national student essay contests
  • Mentor texts, lesson plans and summary pages are provided as appropriate
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Ideas for writing prompts
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Library Resources on StageofLife.com 

Library Resources

  • As a free literacy initiative, Stage of Life features blogs, articles, statistics, trends, resources and information about libraries
  • View our Library Resources
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 Common Core State Standards

English and Language Arts Common Core State Standards

  • Stage of Life mapped its digital literacy activities to the Common Core State Standards
  • Get ideas on how Stage of Life fits many of the Language Arts State Standards, both for those states using the Common Core State Standards and those using their own.
  • View the Stage of Life and Language Arts State Standards Mapping

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New Journalism - Use Blogging to Conduct Interviews 

Interviews - Students Use Blogging as Form of New Journalism

  • Interviewing a professor or teacher, celebrity, band, government official, or really anyone for that matter, is a great way for students to use blogging to explore "new journalism" formats and techniques
  • View our blog interview example
Example of Blog Interview - StageofLife.com
 

How Would Teens Improve Education

 

How Would Students Improve Education?

How would teens improve education?
  Print Free Goal Setting Worksheet  Print Teens and Education press release   Contact Us with comments about how students can improve their schools
 
 Student goal setting

Goal Setting Worksheet

  • Help your students set goals
  • Our Stage of Life Goal Setting Worksheet can be used as an in-class activity or as a take-home assignment
  • Educators are encouraged to use it themselves as a personal or professional tool too
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Goal setting worksheet
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 Teacher Appreciation

Teacher Appreciation

  • View over 180 positive essays written by teens about their teachers
  • Read the five positive relationship benefits good teachers bring to their students
  • Get the latest trends on teens and how they communicate
  • View Teacher Appreciation page
Teacher Appreciation
  How do teens communicate? Print Teen Communication Trends
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Teens Making the World a Better Place

  • Utilize our "Making the World a Better Place" writing prompt to get students thinking and writing about how they can change the world and make a difference
  • Read past student essays about making the world a better place
  • Ask your class to explore the list of student-nominated, "making a difference" organizations by our teen bloggers and writers - maybe they have their own cause to add to the list?
  • View Making the World a Better Place
Making the world a better place on StageofLife.com
  Be The Change lessonPrint press release
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Inspirational Videos

  • Watch our collection of inspirational videos sourced from YouTube
  • After watching the videos, ask your students blog on StageofLife.com about how they intend to change the world or be a positive change in the world.
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  Inspirational videos for teachers to use in the classroom
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Digital Literacy

Digital Literacy - Using Blogs in the Classroom

  • Hear from our panel of experts who use blogging in the classroom
  • Get tips on how to increase your students' digital literacy by incorporating technology into the classroom
  • View Digital Literacy experts
  • View latest trends on Teen Communication

  Digital Literacy
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Health effects of writing

Health and Writing

  • Read about the positive health effects of blogging and writing
  • Help your students reduce teen stress through journaling, blogging or writing
  • View Writing is Healthy

  Writing is healthy
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 Susan Wooldridge

Poem Writing Tips

  • Tips for writing poetry from author of Poemcrazy, Susan Wooldridge
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Poem writing tips from StageofLife.com
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Education partnerships 

Education Resource Partners

Stage of Life has been fortunate to either work directly with or referenced by organizations, schools, non-profits and programs who see a value in our mission to improve digital literacy and have a like-minded mission to support students, teachers and educational initiatives.

A few examples of our educational partnerships or features...
  • NCTE - Stage of Life was an exhibitor at the 2013 NCTE Annual Convention in Boston.  Hundreds of high school Language Arts teachers and college English professors stopped by to meet our VP of Education, Rebecca Thiegs, and pick up our classroom writing contest poster.
  • Teach.com - inspirational resource for anyone currently teaching or thinking about becoming a teacher.  Our very own Stage of Life education consultant, Rebecca, was featured on the Teach.com blog.
  • Mint Education - helping teach students about financial literacy.  Mint featured several of our Stage of Life student blogs about money.
  • Lancaster Museum of Art - Stage of Life CEO, Eric Thiegs, was invited by the LMAPA to present a seminar to teens on the power of writing and artistic collaboration.
  • Tech.IT.U - Stage of Life CEO, Eric Thiegs, was a featured speaker on "the Benefits of Teen Blogging" at the Penn State York sponsored Tech.It.U conference.
  • PCTELA - "Voices of Literacy" Conference - Stage of Life co-Founders, Eric & Rebecca Thiegs, were featured session speakers on "Extending Writing Outside the Classroom Through Blogging" at the 2012 PCTELA conference (Pennsylvania Council of Teachers for English and Language Arts).
 
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Because of the generous support of our national education sponsors, our Stage of Life members can save up to 50% off at many top brands and retailers.  Check out Stage of Life's free My Life Rewards® program to find great coupons and discounts for teachers to save money inside the classroom and out!

     

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