How to help your children grow to be readers     

A recent New York Times article headlined “How to Raise a Reader” by Pamela Paul and Marcia Russo offers easy and practical tips on how you can make sure your young children grow up being readers.

On August 3, the Library News column covered their tips on how to help your babies and toddlers grow up loving to read.  Today we review their suggestions for supporting emerging young readers:

  1. Mix it up. When children start to pick out words, allow them to read to you some of the time.  But don’t make it a test.  Help them by pointing to words you know they will recognize.
  2. Don’t abruptly withdraw your reading services. Being read to is part of your bond and you don’t want your child to think that becoming an independent reader jeopardizes that special time together.  Continue reading aloud picture book favorites and start on more sophisticated books they can’t yet read on their own.
  3. Every child learns to read at a personal pace. There is no correct age for independent reading and no special formula to get every child to read by a certain age.  If you focus on raising a reader, it will happen.
  4. Don’t make reading work. Reading at home should fun.  Don’t put pressure on your child to meet particular targets.
  5. Check in with the teacher but don’t get nervous if your child is not reading at the same level as his or her peers. Late readers often grow up to be better, more enthusiastic readers.  On the other hand, if you or your child’s teacher suspect a reading challenge like dyslexia, get a formal evaluation.

Watch for articles in future Library News columns on how to keep your children loving books as they grow up.

“1,000 Books before Kindergarten”

You can sign up any time at your library for a new free early literacy reading program called “1,000 Books before Kindergarten” for children from birth to five years old.  You will receive a folder with bubbles to keep track of the books you read to your child.  The concept is simple:  Read 1,000 books to your newborn, infant or toddler – yes, you can repeat books – before your precious one starts kindergarten.  You’ll get a free book when you complete the program.

That may sound like a huge number of books, but it’s not really. If you read just one book a night, you will have read 365 books in a year. That is 730 books in two years and 1,095 books in three years. If you consider that most children start kindergarten at around five years of age, you have more time than you may think.

Donations hiatus

We are taking a temporary break from accepting donations until September 15 to process the ones that did not sell at the Friends Book sale, and put them up for sale at bargain prices at your library.  Everyone on the staff, especially Dona, works very hard all year to process the incredible number of items that you, our generous community, donate to us.  It will be helpful to be able to start the next round of donations with a clear workroom.

Activities calendars available

To be sure you don’t miss any of the free activities available to you and your families at your library, we encourage you to pick up a copy of the events calendar each month.  There are three versions – kids, tweens/teens and adults.

New book drop at City Market

We hope you know that we have a new book drop at City Market.  As you face the front door of the grocery store, you’ll find it tucked behind the fifth post on the left, between the wood storage and propane tanks. To start, contents are being picked up three times a week, on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Two special requests to make this new service work for everyone:  First, please put your Nooks in the media side of the box so they are not damaged by heavy books.  Second, the book drop is not for donations.  They need to be brought to the library, as some people donate a lot and that will fill the box faster than it is emptied, not allowing people to return their library materials.  We  hope you understand that the purpose of the drop box is for convenient item return, not item donation.

Rocks and minerals talk today

Today (Thursday, September 7) from 5-6 p.m. join Calvin Webb for a lecture on how rocks and minerals are formed, with various specimens on display.  He is a retired chemist with a passion for geology. 

Teen advisory board today

Today (Thursday, September 7) the teen advisory board meets from 4-5 p.m.  Bring your fun and innovative ideas to help us plan teen programs.  Share an idea to pick out a free book. 

All-ages gaming tomorrow

Enjoy free video gaming on the Wii and X-box 360 Kinect with your family and friends tomorrow (Friday, September 8) from 2-3:15 p.m.

Lego Club

Kids aged 6 – 13 are invited to bring your imaginations – LEGOs are provided – this Saturday, September 9 from 11 a.m. – noon for Lego Club.

Adult Book Club

Our adult book club meets the second Tuesday of each month from 2-3 p.m. to discuss alternating fiction and nonfiction titles.  On September 12 we will discuss “Small Great Things” by Jodi Picoult.  If you need a copy, please stop by your library.  No registration required. 

Teen role-playing

The free role-playing game for 7th-12th graders takes place next Wednesday, September 13 from 4-5:30 p.m.  Use your imagination to go on adventures and battle monsters.  You can join this group any time.

Adult education 

Now that school is back in session, our PALS program – Pagosa Adult Learning Services – expands its hours to three days a week: Mondays from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. plus Tuesdays and Thursdays from 4:30 – 7 p.m.  Come to your library to get help with high school equivalency, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more.

Computer/technology classes

Join us each Monday from 2-3 p.m. to learn a useful or fun technology skill or application.  Topics will vary each week.  September 11 is Internet searching, September 18 is email basics and September 25 is phone storage.  No registration required.

Tween gaming

Free gaming for 4th-8th grades is Monday, September 11 from 4-5 p.m.  Enjoy X-box 360 Kinect, Wii and snacks. 

Teen gaming

Free teen gaming happens every Tuesday from 4–5:30 p.m. for teens in the 7th-12th grades.  Enjoy X-box 360 Kinect, Wii and snacks.

Tech Time

Drop in with your technology questions for free help on Tuesdays from 10 a.m.-noon and Thursdays from 2-4 p.m.

Kids storytime

Every Wednesday from 10-11 a.m., join us for free great stories, fun songs and plenty of reasons to get up and move.  This is an excellent way for kids of all ages to have fun while building the skills they need to become independent readers.

Baby storytime

Every Saturday from 9:05 to 9:25 a.m., join us for a free short session of stories, songs and fingerplays for you and your little ones.  Learn easy tips on how to include literacy skills into everyday family life.

Toddler storytime     

Every Saturday from 9:30–10 a.m., join us for 30 minutes of free stories, songs and fingerplays with open play afterwards.  Learn easy tips on how to include literacy skills in everyday family life.


“Wild Things: The Joy of Reading Children’s Literature as an Adult” by Bruce Handy revisits the classics of American childhood.  “The Importance of Being Funny” by Al Gini shows why we need more jokes in our lives.  “Ayurveda” by Heidi E. Spear offers 50 exercises for finding health, mindfulness and balance.  “Life Lessons” by Julia Cameron provides 125 prayers and meditations that are a powerful but simple approach to God.  “Jorge Bergoglio Francisco” by Andrea Tornielli is a Spanish-language book about the life and ideas of the pope.  “The Education of a Coroner” by John Bateson is a memoir of the coroner of Marin County in California.  “Who are You, Really?” by psychologist Brian R. Little shows you how to shape your personality for a thriving life. 

Mysteries and thrillers

“I Know a Secret” by Tess Gerritsen is a Jane Rizzoli and Maura Isles suspense story.  “A Stranger in the House” by Shari Lapena begins with a phone call the heroine hoped she’d never get.  “Sulfur Springs” by William Kent Krueger follows a couple looking for the reasons for their son’s murder.


“Deadfall” by Linda Fairstein is an Alexandra Cooper thriller.  “Sulfur Springs” by William Kent Krueger follows a couple looking for the reasons for their son’s murder.  “The Burning Girl” by Claire Messud mixes fable and a coming of age tale.  “Love Like Blood” by Mark Billingham is a crime story set in Britain.  “The Last Tudor” by Philippa Gregory features Lady Jane Grey, queen of England for nine days.  “Devil’s Cut” by J.R. Ward is the finale to the Bourbon Kings series.  “Paradise Valley” by C.J. Box follows the search for a serial killer.  “The Late Show” by Michael Connelly launches a new mystery series featuring Renee Ballard.


“Billie Jean King” is the story of the champion tennis player.  “The Invisible War” is an investigative documentary about rape in the U.S. military.  “He Named Me Malala” is the remarkable true story of this young Pakistani heroine.  “Instructions Not Included” is a comedy about a single dad.  “The Company Men” is the story of a man who is the latest casualty of corporate downsizing.

Programmed Nooks

We have nine free Nooks and three free tablets programmed for your e-reading pleasure.  The eight adult content e-readers contain either fiction or nonfiction bestsellers.  The four youth e-readers contain books for children, juniors and young adults.

Downloadable e-books

Current New York Times bestseller downloadable e-books are being added regularly to our free 3M Cloud Library.  Access them by clicking on the 3M Cloud Library icon on the home page of our website.  While there, browse through a multitude of other adult, juvenile and children’s books, both bestsellers and classics in many genres.

Downloadable films

For your viewing pleasure, we offer IndieFlix, a free streaming movie service that gives you unlimited access to more than 7,500 award-winning and popular independent shorts, feature films and documentaries from more than 50 countries – on your device, PC or Mac, with no apps needed.  Access IndieFlix through the Downloadable Content icon on the library’s website.  Use “Quick Pick,” the discovery tool that lets you sample movies like you would music.

Quotable Quote

“If you can laugh at it, you can live with it.” – Joan Rivers (1933-2014), American comedian, actress, writer and TV host.

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