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Children's Services


Children's Services is a priority in the Alameda County Library. Each branch has staff responsible for the maintenance of the children's collection, which includes materials for children from birth through eighth grade. The same staff is available to assist children in finding sources of information suitable to their needs and reading skill and to offer suggestions and guidance with respect to reading for pleasure. Staff also prepares and/or presents an on-going program of activities designed to bring the library to the attention of children and their parents.

Children have access to all of the library's collections and services. The child's use of the library collections is, in general, subject to the same regulations that govern adult use. The general library staff accords children the same courtesy, the same attention and the same service that is accorded to adults. Parents remain responsible for the selections their children make.


Children's Collection

The children's collection contains material of interest to children from birth through eighth grade. Some branches also include a selection of books of interest to parents. A range of media is offered system wide as part of the children's collection: books, videos, audiocassettes, compactdisc recordings, CD-ROMs and periodicals. In addition, system collections of Braille and large type books are housed at Fremont Main. Collections of materials in other languages include: Spanish, Chinese, Farsi, French, German, Gujarati, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Portuguese, Punjabi, Romanian, Russian, Spanish, Tagalog, Urdu and Vietnamese. While all these materials may not be available at all of our branches, these materials are available to all through intra-library loan.

Most branches also have access to the Internet both at the reference desk and available to the public. Terminals located in the children's area are filtered and have our special Kids Place Web site as their homepage. This site is also available through the Web for people who have Internet access at home. This site is designed as a starting point for children preschool through eighth grade and has a connection to Alameda County Library's catalog set to search materials in the children's collection. In the case of children using the Internet, as with their use of any other Library materials, parents or guardians are expected to guide and supervise their children's use by selecting material that is consistent with their personal values. Library staff will not assume this parental role.


Children's Services Programs

Throughout the year, Children's Services staff offers a variety of programs including preschool storytimes, toddler times, group visits and special events. Staffing levels vary from branch to branch and so do the programs. Check with the children's staff at your local branch to find out what programs are scheduled.

In the summer there is a popular summer reading program for both readers and children being read to. Sponsors of this program include the Alameda County Library Foundation, RoundTable Pizza and local Friends of the Library groups. Most branches also have a Kid Power program in which Junior High students help others play the Summer Reading Game. In addition a wide variety of special events from storytellers to puppet shows and magicians are scheduled at the branches. Look for information about the reading game and the special programs about the time school lets out for the summer.

Teachers are encouraged to let their local Children's Services staff know about any current assignments. Materials can be borrowed from other branches and made reference only so children coming to the library can be assured of finding some information available throughout the assignment.

If you have more questions or comments about Children's Services please contact the Children's Services Coordinator: Karen Pacheco 510-745-1411