Students from Hylton High School and Beville Middle School worked together to build “Little Free Libraries” for the community.
Little Free Libraries are small cabinets containing free books that are placed in communities, where individuals can take a book or add a book to the collection.
“The idea is, if you take a book from the library, place one in there to replace it. Take a book, leave a book,” stated Prince William County Schools (PWCS) Office of Library Media Programs and Research Supervisor Schenell Agee in a release.
After Agee saw a Little Free Library display in Washington, D.C., she decided to bring that back to PWCS students for a special project.
According to a release, Hylton High tech-ed teacher Thomas Ehman worked with students to build 20 Little Free Libraries, and this year the students will make ten additional models.
“Once the students started building them and fully understood the purpose of the project, they developed a sense of pride in their work and really tried to do their best,” stated Ehman in a release.
In addition to the ten libraries being built by Hylton students, children in Beville Middle’s after school program are building ten of their own from kits.
“We are happy to be completing these libraries. As an IB (International Baccalaureate) school, this is a great way to do something for our community,” stated Beville Middle teacher John Dolan.
More on the project, from a release:
“It is really fun putting the libraries together,” said Coy Gibson, eighth grade student.
“I think it is cool that we are doing something to help our communities,” said Caleb Dolan, seventh grade student.
Graham Park Middle School has incorporated more collaboration. Mrs. Laura Schubert, CTE teacher, and Monica Abrams, librarian, are working to install a Little Free Library at Ginn Memorial Park in Dumfries. In November, they walked to the park to meet government officials, met Miss Utility (to ensure they placed the library somewhere that did not conflict with utilities) and worked with their technology specialist to help students use augmented reality to decide on the best place for the library to be posted. Students took their findings back to their workshop and began designing the structural post for the little library.
Last year, SPARK, the education foundation for PWCS, funded the project to build the initial 20 Little Free Libraries. Agee said this year, the Prince William County SPCA supported this worthy cause through a $3,000 grant to help pay for the materials. The SPCA has also offered to help supply books.
To date, Little Free Libraries are now available at the following schools:
Bel Air Elementary School
Belmont Elementary School
Dale City Elementary School
Dumfries Elementary School
Enterprise Elementary School
Featherstone Elementary School
Fitzgerald Elementary School
Freedom High School
Graham Park Middle School
Kerrydale Elementary School
Kilby Elementary School
Leesylvania Elementary School
Williams Elementary School
Marumsco Hills Elementary School
Minnieville Elementary School
Neabsco Elementary School
Occoquan Elementary School
Potomac View Elementary School
River Oaks Elementary School
Sudley Elementary School
Swans Creek Elementary School
Triangle Elementary School
Vaughan Elementary School
Yorkshire Elementary School