Friday, September 23, 2022

Free Fest Coming to West Lawn Library

Just sent to us by the Chicago Public Library Foundation:

On Saturday, September 24, Chicago Public Library, the Chicago Public Library Foundation and Amazon will celebrate the start of the school year with the community at the newly renovated West Lawn Branch, 4020 West 63rd Street.

From 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., families can enjoy learning and discovery with activities ranging from live animal shows to hands-on STEM activities for children of all ages. Students can also pick up their back-to-school Grab & Go kits at the event.

This event is free, and all are welcome.

The celebration will also introduce families to accessible and free homework help resources available, including Teacher in the Library. This donor-powered program has helped bridge
the academic opportunity gap for more than 30 years.

Families are encouraged to explore the branch, talk to our Teachers, and ask questions about the program and other free learning resources.

“The Library is deeply committed to improving learning goals for our children and teens,” said Chicago Public Library Commissioner Brown. “Not only do we believe in providing safe spaces for learning, we believe in providing learning programs designed to assist with closing the achievement gap for those who have historically faced challenges with access to academic

For more than two decades, Chicago Public Library has provided homework help to thousands of Chicago’s students, especially to lower-income children and non-white children who
continue to face the most significant obstacles to educational opportunity in Chicago.

According to the Brookings Institution, students continue to experience prolonged learning disruptions from the past two years. Estimates suggest there is up to a 30% loss in reading
skills and a 50% loss in math skills. More concerning is that the achievement divide between students in low-poverty and high-poverty areas grew by 20% in math and 15% in reading.

The Library’s Teacher in the Library program gives students after school access to accredited teachers that help students complete their schoolwork, prepare for tests, build strong study
skills, and review concepts covered in their classes such as reading and comprehension skills, multiplication, and more.

Teachers also work with parents and caregivers ─ giving them additional resources and strategies to help reinforce school lessons at home. Teachers even help prepare students to
thrive outside of school by supporting them as they transition to adulthood, assisting with college applications and career road-mapping.

“I have been a Teacher in the Library for 20 years and have witnessed the impact of the program to students in the community, making accessible critical academic support that every child deserves. The Teacher in the Library has also become a welcome resource for parents and caregivers to help their children, making sure that learning continues from the school to the Library to the home,” said Melody Farmer.

In 2020, this signature Library program pivoted to a virtual format to prevent further loss of valuable learning hours and offer the after-school academic support many students lost access to due to the pandemic. To help students as they returned to the classroom, teachers returned to the
branches in fall 2021, while continuing virtual sessions, providing 9,619 sessions of free one-on-one homework help across the city, in-person and online.

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