Big Ben

I just want to give a shout out to Big Ben Franklin.

He conceived of the idea of the first public library.  Or at least he’s often credited with the idea.   That’s good enough for this homeschool momma.

I just love the public library.  It took me a while to come around to it.  I always loved the idea.  But actually getting there, looking around shelves, getting home in the rain, and then remembering to return the books all seemed like too much hassle.  Especially when Amazon started shipping for free. But homeschooling is starting to break the bank, so I’m forcing myself to the library.

Our newly renovated library is incredible.  Zach and Ezra love to go, and will sit at the big tables and work happily for at least thirty minutes.  And when they get tired of homeschool work, they ask to go read.  Like it’s a big treat.

The boys love to check out their own books, can’t believe you can take home as many movies as you want, love to watch the hamster that is built in to the librarian’s desk, are proud of knowing where the nonfiction section (“where Mom gets the books for school”), and enjoy being the celebrity big kids in the room at 11 in the morning.  Plus, there are beautiful places to eat, snuggle, and run around outside.

Whoever it was that thought of this whole library thing should be sainted by the homeschooling canonization committee.

I’ve decided that we’re going to a morning at the library every week.  And I’m going to teach the boys to shout, “Go Big Ben! Go Big Ben!” as they run up to the front door.  That should endear us to the librarians, right?

Here are some pics of our hip, new library:

I think Ben’d be proud. Or maybe die of a heart attack when he found himself in the future.

Either, way, he’d be impressed, yes?

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  • Nancy McArdle

    Dear Tara,

    I've been reading your blog from the beginning with great interest and also mentioned it to my sister who has homeschooled her kids. Your piece on the library made me wonder if you know about this activity at the Toronto Public Library where you can "check out a human." Innovative and intriguing:

    Looks like a thing they'd do in Cambridge.

  • tedelschick

    Nancy, I love this idea.

    Do you think I could check out a homeschool mom for the day? And do you think I actually have to talk to her, or could I just watch her do her thing with my boys for the day? I could sit on the couch with a cup of coffee and a laptop and pretend I'm taking notes. I'd even be willing to pay the late fees for keeping her for the whole day.

  • Love Ben. Love that library.

    Combining the two: My boys love the book Ben & Me. Check it out if you haven't already.