Q&A: Patrons Ask; Librarians Answer: My pre-teen wants to visit the library this summer with her friends. Without me! Is it okay? Is it safe?

Your children are welcome here. REALLY! But before they come, here are some tips to consider when preparing for a successful library visit.

Q: My pre-teen wants to visit the library this summer with her friends. Without me!  Is it okay? Is it safe?  --- Nervous Parent

A: Hi Nervous Parent. Kids are some of our best customers! Whether they come with parents (or responsible caregivers) or venture into the library alone, they embrace the library as a place of fun and exploration.

According to the our Guidelines for Behavior it is acceptable for minors who are at least 8 years old to visit the library without adult supervision. But please keep in mind that we are not In Loco Parentis: a legal-Latin-term that means “in place of the parent.” In layman’s terms: Unlike school or a community center that takes responsibility for children in place of the parent, the public library is not responsible for your kid, and we don't directly supervise

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OPL Celebrates Asian Pacific Islander Heritage Month with Megumi!

Whether it's "The Mouse's Marriage," "The Young Man Who Slept for Three Years," or another Japanese folk tale, Megumi has her owns special way of telling it.

Picture of MegumiJoin us at Oakland Public Library as we celebrate Asian Pacific Islanders Heritage Month with Megumi. This wonderful bilingual storyteller (English/Japanese) will entertain and move us with tales of all types. She especially delights in sharing Japanese folk tales. Megumi will be at four branches in May:

 

 

Tuesday May 5 at 12:30pm at the Martin Luther King, Jr Branch

Wednesday May 6 at 10:30am at the Asian Branch

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Oh, LiLo! Arabic Resources at OPL

If only Lindsay Lohan had taken advantage of OPL's Arabic language resources before her Instagram fail!

By now you've probably heard about Lindsay Lohan's Instagram gaffe--yesterday, she tweeted a picture of Arabic writing with the English words "You are beautiful" underneath. Except that the Arabic words in the picture don't mean "You are beautiful;" they mean "you're a donkey." Whoops! 

If LiLo wanted to build some skills in Arabic, she could very well start at the Oakland Public Library. Did you know that OPL offers language learning courses you can access for free with your library card? Follow this link, and scroll until you see Transparent Language Online. When you sign in with your library card number, you can begin an audio program on any language you like. Great resource for travelers, btw.

But what if Lindsay wants a more intensive course, with a book to go along with her lessons? She could check out one of OPL's language kits, which contain both print

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Q&A: Patrons ask; librarians answer: How old do you have to be to get a library card?

It's National Library Week! Although children's librarians talk with parents, caregivers, and children all day, every day, this week is special because we take a minute to appreciate the presence of libraries in our community.

Q: How old do you have to be to get a library card?

A: Five years old, or in Kindergarten.

Chloe (age 5): [beaming at her mom] I am five!

Librarian: Great! You can get your first card today! You can fill out the registration form on paper, or online, at the computer right next to the desk or at home.

Mom: Should we do it right now?

Chloe: Yes! Let's use the computer! Can I help you type?

Mom: Sure!

[After

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Día!: Diversity in Action

Kirk Waller and Mariella Herrera help us celebrate children, books, and language at your library.

Día!: Diversity in Action (formerly known as Día de los Niños/Día de los Libros) celebrates children, families, fun, and the joy of books and language.

In Oakland we celebrate Día for a whole month, at each of your libraries. This year we present two wonderful performers.  Bring the whole family. There will be light refreshements, and free book to keep for each child attending. 

Picture of Kirk WallerKirk Waller - With a lifelong love of story, literature and the performing arts, Kirk Waller summons

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Hey kids, get cooking!

Come in today and grab a cookbook to share with your kids!

There are two cookbooks seeing heavy rotation in my kitchen right now: Afro-Vegan by Bryant Terry and Thug Kitchen.

   

Mmm-mmm! Please try the peach-pomegranate barbecue sauce in

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Q&A: Patrons ask; librarians answer: I know what kind of book I want but I can't find it!

How to find that hard-to-find book

Kids looking for booksQ: I know exactly what kind of book my son/daughter likes but it is kind of hard to describe.  Can you help me find some good titles that we would like?

A:  Yes, we would love to help!  One of the best book requests I ever heard from a parent was for picture books "where there is a lot of things to look at."  It turned out her four year old son loved pouring over elaborate illustrations with lots of little details to explore.  And guess what?  There are lots of children's picture books that fit the bill!  The tricky part for this parent was to find those types of books on the shelf when there isn't a keyword for "detailed pictures" or "lots to see" in the library catalog.  So how do we find something her son will enjoy?

Looking for books with a certain feel, tone, or specific trait can

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Wheeee! Roller Coasters....At the Library?

Become a roller coaster engineer, April 2nd, 3:30 at the 81st Avenue Library!


Do you love roller coasters?  The loops, the speed, the excitement, the wind in your hair?  Have you ever wondered why some coasters are faster or scarier than others?  How roller coaster cars stay on the track?  If you answered yes to any of these questions, have we got something special for you!

 

On Thursday, April 2nd at 3:30, Lawrence Hall of Science is coming to the 81st Avenue Library to teach kids Lawrence Hall of Science logoall about the science and engineering of roller coasters with hands-on experiementing and table-top creations! 

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Kids Eat Free! YES FREE!

New food program launched in the Oakland Library. Free meals and snacks served after school.

Starting April 2nd and ending May 22nd everyone who is 18 years old and younger can eat a FREE meal or a snack in the Eastmont library. The meals must be eaten onsite in the designated area.  Meals will be served between 3:30 and 4:30 pm (or while supplies last.) 

We are also looking for a few responsible teenagers or young adults to  volunteer and help us distribute the food.  In addition to showering you with undying gradidute,  we will also sign off on your school mandated community service hours. Contact Paul Schiesser at (510) 615-5726 for more details.

The Eastmont Library is located in the Eastmont Towncenter: 7200 Bancroft Ave. Suite 211 (second floor)

So you're hungry today? Or you can't make it to the Eastmont Library? Try these other two locations:

 

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What's Your Favorite Bunny Book?

Do you like your bunnies soft and gentle, or bloody and savage? Either way, we've got a bunny book for you!

Hippity-hop! It's springtime in Oakland, and I thought we could celebrate with a chat about bunnies, the official animal of spring. I don't know why the vernal equinox gets everyone thinking about rabbits. Scientific data exists that shows they do, in fact, exist at other times of the year.

Also, bunnies are really not sweet and gentle and cute as the books below would have you believe. They are kind of vicious. Have you read Watership Down? If you haven't, you really should. It's one of my childhood favorites. At one point, I considered myself fluent in the language the author invented for the book, so if you read it, maybe you can come by and we can have a conversation in Lapine. Anyway, the rabbits in that book killed each other pretty easily and often, so much so that if you do a Google image search for "

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