@ Your Library

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, March 14, 2006

The Selma Times-Journal

By the end of this week, area eighth grade students will know the Selma-Dallas County Public Library only wants the best for them.

The library recently launched a new program titled @ Your Library. The program aims to reintroduce students to library resources before they enter high school &045; a critical transition period, said Library Director Becky Nichols.

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Nichols said @ Your Library began as a result of the Welcome to Your Library program. Targeted towards first grade students, Welcome to Your Library aims to spark student interest at an impressionable age.

Nichols spoke to students from Selma Middle CHAT Academy Tuesday afternoon. She told them they were about to enter some of the most important years in their lives, a time when they may need to use the library more than ever before.

Nichols also added the library will help students make the grades needed for collegiate studies.

All students were issued new library cards. The library staff has cleared any previous fines on old cards because they want the students to have a fresh start, said Sheronda Sanders, the library’s coordinator of information services.

Packets were distributed to students as well, containing an Alabama Virtual Library Card, and a membership to the test preparation Web site www.learningexpresslibrary.com. Students were also informed of the state’s free live online homework help service, www.homeworkalabama.org. The service offers online tutoring in math, science, social studies and English and is available from 3 p.m. to midnight daily. The online tutors are retired teachers and college professors, Nichols said.

Following a virtual tour of the library’s website and online resources, the students were led on an real life library tour.

CHAT Academy student Hillary Blevins said it’s been a while since she’s come to library, but she plans on visiting more often. She is glad the library staff has extended its help out to her and her peers.

Fatima Phillips, also a student at CHAT Academy, has an optimistic outlook on the program as well.