Celebrate national library card month

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Your library card – the smartest card in your wallet. The Picayune Item, being a great supporter of libraries, prints this fairly often. What does it mean? Smart as in a smart phone, smart money, smart-aleck, smart as a whip? Does it get the promotions at work, come up with the latest and greatest inventions, make the highest marks on a report card?

It could mean this and a lot more.  The library card comes free of charge. All you have to do is show proof of physical address and a valid picture identification. A current driver’s license will take care of both the requirements.

A parent or legal guardian can get a library card for their child when they are 6 years old or older.  Your library card allows you to take home books to read, to relish, to discuss. Bring them back and get some more. Will that make you smarter than a smart phone? I think it will. Will you become smart with your money? If you read books about financing. Will you become smart as a whip and a smart-aleck?

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I would hope you would become smart as a whip, but learn to mind your manners as well.

Will you get the promotions at work or come up with the latest and greatest invention? If you are determined to make either of these happen, the books and other materials at the library can help you. Will the library card get you the highest marks on a report card? Statistics resoundingly say, “Yes!”

Studies show that children who are read to in the home and who use the library perform better in school.

September is Library Card Sign-up Month, a time when the Pearl River County Library System joins with the American Library Association and public libraries nationwide to make sure that every student has the most important school supply of all – a free library card.

Mystery writer, Rita Mae Brown says, “When I got [my] library card, that was when my life began.”

Students in Picayune can go to Crosby Memorial Library at 900 Goodyear Blvd. and students in Poplarville can go to the Poplarville Public Library at 202 W. Beers St. after school to do homework, collaborate with each other on school projects, or relax and talk about books.

The students have access to e-journals as well as print magazines and knowledgeable staff to help find that elusive piece of information.

Programs are constantly being offered at the two libraries and they are being planned for this fall. The Friends of Crosby Memorial Library have a full line-up of fall Sunday programs as well as some fun Brown Bag Book Reviews. The Friends of Poplarville Public Library is planning its fall and spring programs.

Story hour for preschool children is planned for both libraries and Poplarville Public Library is planning a story hour for lower elementary students this fall. So, even if you don’t need the nonfiction books to help you with that invention or homework project, check out the fiction, relax the gray matter after work and know that you are still exercising without exerting too much effort.

I used to recite a poem by Jim Trelease with my children during the Summer Reading Program that began, “The more you read, the more you know. The more you know, the smarter you grow.” I believe that goes for people of all ages. And what better place to get books than the library.

Happy Library Card Sign-up Month, y’all. I’ll be seeing you around the library.