Orange libraries use $1K gift to buy children’s books

  • Contributed imageA 3D model of potential renovation of Wheeler Memorial Library in Orange.

  • Several children’s books purchased with a Traprock Center donation. Recorder File Photo

Recorder Staff
Published: 9/21/2017 10:43:26 PM

GREENFIELD — The Traprock Center for Peace and Justice has awarded $1,000 to the Orange Public Libraries to purchase children’s books on the themes of world peace, empathy, friendship and diversity.

“Books can influence children in so many ways — providing good role models, deepening their sense of wonder in nature, stimulating their imagination, and showing a world of tolerance and respect,” Traprock Director Pat Hynes said.

The Orange Public Libraries has used the donation to purchase nearly 100 books for children, ranging in age from early childhood to young teens. The collection features a mix of fiction titles that address children’s emotional and social growth, nature poetry, and nonfiction books on topics ranging from environmental science to biographies of people who have advanced human and civil rights.

“My aim when selecting the books for this collection was to choose diverse titles that are relatable to children of every age,” Orange children’s librarian Jason Sullivan-Flynn said. “These books are exciting additions to our collection and I’m looking forward to introducing them to the public.”

The collection will be on display at the Wheeler Memorial Library and the Moore-Leland Library in North Orange beginning Saturday. The library will also host a kite making workshop for children ages 5 and up and their families at the Wheeler Memorial Library on Saturday at noon. The workshop will begin with Sullivan-Flynn reading one of the books purchased with the Traprock Center’s gift — Bruce Edward Hall’s “Henry and the Kite Dragon.”

Last year, the Traprock Center made a similar donation to the Greenfield Public Library that was used to purchase children’s books on the themes of peace, social justice and nature.

Hynes said she decided to continue the collaboration with a new library — which she plans to do again next year — after being moved by quotes from two young sisters who use the library regularly.

“One sister said, ‘Every book I’ve read has changed me in some way,’” Hynes said. “Her younger sister said she read this booked called ‘Out of My Mind’ — a novel about a girl with cerebral palsy.”

After reading the book, the girl said, “I have a kid with disabilities at my school, and I didn’t think about how she felt about it until I read this book.”

Hynes said the girls’ responses reinforced her own conviction about the power of children’s books. She added that the libraries’ collection can also be used by teachers, parents and social service agencies in the area.

For more information about the Orange Public Libraries’ collection, call 978-544-2495.


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