In The Library: January 19 - The Hinton News
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In The Library: January 19

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Hello friends and patrons,

Both in and out of the Library words have great power. Way back in 1962 Spiderman made us “aware at last that in this world, with great power there must also come – great responsibility!” We would be wise to use and choose our words responsibly, both in the way we communicate with one another our internal dialogue.

The words that we say and hear not only describe the world around us, but also shape our perception of world of ourselves, and each other. Words can cause discomfort and/or harm when used irresponsibly and have the power to negatively influence another human for decades. The flip side is that words have the ability to empower, to provide comfort, and to understand ourselves, each other, and the world at large.

This is underappreciated because we use words all day every day. We see, hear, and speak so many words that we do not always recognize their value and impact. Technological advances have given more people more access to more words, which would be fan-flippin-tastic, if we were treating them as the treasures they truly are. But alas, we often use words that are not productive, from empty mindless chatter, to actual destructive words.

I personally choose poor words with such frequency that my resolution for 2022 is to communicate better which includes being mindful of the quality and quantity of words I say, see, and hear. I am of the opinion that better communication has the power to improve our overall quality of life and I’m willing to test this hypothesis in my own life. Worst-case scenario is my experience does not improve, but I would still be communicating and connecting better with the people around me, both in and out of the Library.

Which brings me to one of my favorite ways to teach about the power of story and of words. I was fortunate to be invited to demonstrate reading aloud at Hinton Area Elementary. Reading aloud to children creates a powerful bond between the reader and listener. It teaches them the power of story, gives them respect for words, helps them understand more, and communicate better. It is my hope that by transmitting this knowledge to the next generation of word users, we can help them create a better experience for themselves and others. There is no wrong way to read aloud, but there are steps that maximize the time spent together.

Read aloud is special time. Treat it accordingly. Read aloud does not need to take a large quantity of time, if the time spent is focused. So please put away the phone and whatever internal chatter is running around in your head, it will still be there waiting for you when read aloud is over.
Choose high quality books to read, if you need help finding the right book(s) please stop by your local library we have an enormous selection. If your child is under five, we’ll also try to sign you up with Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library and they’ll send you a FREE book every month in the US Mail.
For best results, be consistent with read aloud, same general time and place. Just before bedtime is the classic read aloud time for a reason, I seriously recommend making this a habit for all parents. It may be uninvited advice, but trust me on this one thing.
Just because you read aloud before bed, doesn’t mean it isn’t fun to do at other times as well.
Have fun with it, just because it is important and impactful doesn’t mean it has to be a serious chore, enjoy yourselves.
The Library is open Monday – Friday 8:30 a.m. – 6:00 p.m., more information is available on our website summers.lib.wv.us, our Facebook page, or by calling 304-466-4490. Come and check out what’s happening at your Library.

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