First-time visitors to Lavery Library’s Curriculum Center, located on the Lower Level, often have that Alice-Down-the-Rabbit-Hole feeling for an instant. It can be a bit surprising to suddenly find yourself surrounded by life-like puppets, games, puzzles, and children’s books. If you become a user of the Curriculum Center though, you will understand that its uniqueness is its value. Those of us who work in the library notice that students from across campus find the Lower Level a comfy place to study.
While the most frequent users of the Curriculum Center are the students and faculty in the School of Education, the entire college community enjoys borrowing from the Curriculum Center. Children’s books never fail when preparing a lesson, planning a family trip, reading aloud to children, or tackling a serious topic with a little one. The Young Adult books world is currently on fire, so much so that adults are often caught reading them! Browse the shelves for your favorite flavor…real-life issues, mystery, or fantasy at its best.
If science and math are on your mind, take a look at Reptile Bingo, friendly bear counters, tangrams, or Qwirkle. Ever used a Vernier Lab Pro to collect data about velocity while riding a roller coaster? There’s even a kit of materials for teaching about digestive systems — appropriately titled Poop.
The Accucut die cutter can be fun for creating displays for a classroom or for making a welcome-home banner for your best friend. This handy device can cut paper, thin fabric, and sticky-back foam. Once found only in K-12 teachers’ lounges, access to this device has inspired folks across campus to find dozens of uses for it.
The puppets find their way into everyone’s hearts. Would you like to cuddle a chameleon or have hugs from a cuttlefish? In fact, during exam week, puppets were caught riding up and down the library elevator! These little critters can work magic in the classroom as many a K-12 teacher will tell you.
Sure, teaching and learning are serious matters. Still, if teaching and learning are the meat and veggies of life, then the Curriculum Center resources are the spice and sugar. Next time you are in the mood for a treat, pop down the Lavery rabbit hole to the Lower Level and see for yourself.
May you forever find fun in learning,
Kathi Sigler, Education Librarian