Thursday, September 12, 2013

Washington County, Oakdale Minnesota -- Revisit

It was impossible to miss the fact that something major was going on involving the parking lot and the grounds. The answer was provided on a bulletin board in the lobby: it's a stormwater management project, an admirable thing to do. It's too bad that the parking lot had to be redone for this purpose, but the result should be quite handsome.

Six tables in the middle of the library were standing ready for the homework crowd, and they started to arrive while I was there. In the meantime, a man and a young girl had a chess game set up on one table. Ten public computers were mostly busy, with some adults and some kids. In the children's area, a middle-school boy was working out some ideas with a board and gears designed for younger children but serving his needs at that point.

A very large poster, perhaps 4' x 8', made of paper and felt, graced the children's area with the message "Dive Into School." The children's area is brightened by a large bow window with a long padded window seat. A small bookshelf held J and YT series books. This reminded me that last summer it was at a Washington County library that I had a discussion about the YT designation. I like it, since so many Y or YA books seem very grown up. [OK, I went back to the comment about YT; last August, someone from Oakdale told me that it was a designation no longer used. Really?]

All non-fiction is shelved together here. I like this approach in general, but today I saw a couple of books that seemed to be borderline E or J; that is, they were appropriately marked J, but they seemed quite young. That made me wonder whether younger kids are sometimes missing the non-fiction they would enjoy. This libary appears to have the sort of staff that would deal skillfully with such a situation--so long as the child's need was known.

Meetings can be held in a quiet study room that seemed well-designed to use a long, triangular space; a conference room for up to 10 people, and a meeting room off the lobby for up to 90.

This is one of the quietest libraries I've been in!

For more information about this library, go to http://www.co.washington.mn.us/index.aspx?NID=467.

9/12/2013, car



I'll go back for a new picture next spring, when the grass is in.

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Comments are welcomed, and I will generally respond to them. Please be tasteful; comments that are in poor taste will be deleted.
Sorry about the "verification" step; I added it after a rash of spammish comments.