Wednesday, March 25, 2015

“Libraries are for making . . . communities stronger.” #TTW15

Fairmount Heights Library
On Wednesday, March 18, members of In Reach's Girls of Worth Literacy Club at William Paca Elementary (sixth grade girls) and the Quantum Project at Kenmoor Middle School (eighth graders) celebrated YALSA’s Teen Tech Week “Libraries are for Making...”at Fairmount Heights Library. Teen Tech Week is when libraries make the time to showcase all of the great digital resources and services that are available to help teens succeed in school and prepare for college and 21st century careers.

The staff at Fairmount Heights Library rock! They engaged students, each group for ninety minutes, in a session of coding and a session working in the new Dream Lab which is set up like a studio with all of the bells and whistles, and students were encouraged to check out books at end of the visit, which many of them did. From the computers that students can learn and practice coding on, to simply checking out books, whether online or in-person, there are so many wonderful options available to children, youth and families right at their neighborhood library. Options that can help make our communities stronger by increasing and supporting literacy from every angle. The Prince George’s County public library system has even made it easier for students to apply for their own library card.

One of our goals, this school year, was to engage as many students as possible in the use of their neighborhood library. The PGCMLS offers homework help electronically or via telephone and assistance with preparing resumes and much more for adults. Our libraries offer teens a space to extend their learning beyond the classroom where they can explore, create, share content and connect in meaningful ways to gain the digital literacy skills they need to be successful.

For more information about library services in Prince George’s County, MD, contact

YALSA - Young Adult Library Services Association,

Monday, March 23, 2015

What do adults and Dr. Seuss have in common?

On March 17, In Reach staff and guest readers from Kentland Palmer Park’s Transforming Neighborhoods Initiative (TNi) celebrated Read Across America day with eager elementary-aged students from the area. Each year, on Dr. Seuss' birthday, March 2, students everywhere celebrate his life and legacy by reading a good book. Inclement weather conditions may have delayed the celebration this year but not the fun of two events enjoyed in one - Dr. Seuss and St. Patrick’s Day. The Kentland Community Center’s Aftercare program services all school-aged students, while most commonly students are kindergarten to sixth grade.

After In Reach staff gave a hearty welcome, students watched Dr. Seuss on the Loose, a short film collection of three Seuss sing-a-long stories The Sneetches, The Zax and Green Eggs and Ham. Shortly afterwards, students were separated by grade level and our guest readers took over. Each guest reader read as many of their favorite childhood stories as they had time to read. With enthusiasm and the excitement of young children themselves, it was apparent, by the brightness in the children's eyes, that the adults were fully engaging each one of them and having a great time as well.

Before dismissal everyone enjoyed a delicious treat of St. Patrick’s Day themed cake and each student was able to choose one Scholastic book and a bookmark to take home. This celebration marked the official launch of In Reach’s Catch Them by Third Power of Literacy Program pilot at Kentland Community Center for second grade students designed to inspire and help them build literacy skills, ensure that they are able to continue to develop literacy skills throughout the summer, and help families foster language and literacy skill development in their young children.

Thank you to our awesome TNi guest readers: Lavinia Baxter, Ralph Moultrie, and Alexia Clark, and In Reach’s Dream Team: Katrina Robinson, program manager; Samantha Trotter, AmeriCorps VISTA partner engagement specialist and organizer of the day’s activities; Randi Coward, afterschool program facilitator; and Toni Smith, executive director.

Sunday, March 8, 2015

Celebrating Amazing Prince George's County Parents 2015!

If you are a parent with a child attending a Prince George's County Public School 
or know a parent who does, we encourage you to nominate yourself 
or another parent for one of three awards, and then plan to join us at the 
dinner event on Sunday, June 14, for a relaxing and enjoyable afternoon.

We are planning a delightful celebration of parents. 
Download the Nomination Form.

Friday, March 6, 2015

Register Today - Youth Empowerment Summit 2015

Registration is Now Open for 
Youth Empowerment Summit 2015

YES sells out quickly so register today! 
This year's event promises to be the very best.