Commentary: Library cards can fill many needs for Delawareans

By Annie Norman
Posted 9/19/21

Library cards are small enough to fit in your wallet, on your keychain or on your phone — and powerful enough to change your life!

A library card is a symbol of lifelong learning and …

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Commentary: Library cards can fill many needs for Delawareans

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Library cards are small enough to fit in your wallet, on your keychain or on your phone — and powerful enough to change your life!

A library card is a symbol of lifelong learning and advancement, giving Delawareans access to endless amounts of books, e-books and services, too! A Delaware library card can be used at any of the 33 public libraries throughout the state for access to the internet, as well as 2.5 million books and more shared by 70 participating libraries  (including public, academic, special and several school libraries) in the Delaware Library Catalog (delawarelibraries.org). Whether someone is looking to build literacy skills, computer skills or more, the library is the one place that provides the help needed to succeed.

Delaware’s first lady, Tracey Quillen Carney, is honorary chair of the Delaware Library Card Campaign, a part of her effort to help children succeed through the First Chance Delaware initiative. Library cards for children and teens feature fine-free loans and age-appropriate reading.

My First Delaware Library Card

It’s never too early to read to children! My First Delaware Library Card is for children from birth through age 5 and features Baby Blue Hen. The library encourages parents to read to their children and bring them to libraries’ storytimes to introduce them to the joy of reading. Parents can also sign up babies and preschoolers for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library to receive one book each month by mail. Parents who read four picture books to their children every day in the beginning years will have exposed them to more than 7,000 books by the time they reach kindergarten! This helps build important listening skills and vocabulary that will serve them well once they start school. These children have a strong foundation for success and know more words than kids who haven’t been read to.

Super Library Card

For school-age children, a library card is essential! The Super Library Card is for kids between ages 6 and 12. This card features superheroes in the design because all kids can be superheroes! Those who sign up for the Super Library Card can also participate in a tracking program and receive stamps for each visit to the library to collect superhero zipper pulls.

SmartCard for teens

The newest library card is geared toward teens in middle and high school. Need resources for a research project or prep? Or do you just need to relax and escape into a good book? The library’s got you covered! Want to listen to the latest Taylor Swift album or stream a movie? Yup, we’ve got that, too! Interested in STEM, crafting, sewing, gaming? Yes, yes and yes!

Cards for adults

Adults are able to choose from five different library card designs. Options include a purple Find card, a blue Connect card, a green Learn card, an orange Inspire card and a teal Transform card. Those who register for a library card online have immediate access to e-media and are able to download e-books, e-magazines and online resources for free. The libraries also have extensive in-person services and programming available for patrons to learn and explore.

Educator Library Cards

For teachers, administrators, school librarians and home-schoolers, Delaware libraries also offer a specific type of library  card that helps supplement curriculum. This card is ideal for those who are searching for additional materials to incorporate into their classrooms and learning environments.

While the first thing that comes to mind with library cards may be “books,” there are plenty of other opportunities and advantages that libraries provide. The library keeps the community connected to information, businesses, volunteering and all types of initiatives to help improve the lives of Delawareans. Our libraries have been expanding in space, partnerships and innovations to accommodate the more than 4 million visitors who use the facilities each year. Libraries work  with many partners to support community needs as they evolve and fill the gap for those who have specific requirements.

How do you use your library card? Currently, about half of Delawareans have one. Our goal is to achieve 100% because we want everyone to take advantage of our resources to achieve their full potential. Please spread the word about the benefits you receive from your library. Considering getting a library card? Whatever your interest, whatever your passion, the library supports it.

Get your Delaware library card today!

Annie Norman is Delaware’s state librarian. More information can be found here https://lib.de.us/librarycard/.