September is National Library Card Sign-up Month. With school back in full swing it’s a perfect time to get your child a library card as it can be one of the important supplies in their backpack! This years honorary chair for the ALA is Stan Lee, the legendary comic creator.
“Having a library card it’s like having a key to all the information in the world. When you have a library card you can read anything about anything, and I have found that whatever you read, it doesn’t matter, it increases your fund of knowledge,” says Lee. “So a library card is the ‘Open Sesame’ to all the knowledge in the world.”
A voracious reader from an early age, Lee recalls that if it hadn’t been for libraries he could never have afforded all the books he wanted to read. This September, Lee encourages every child to sign up for the most important school supply of all, a library card – the key to knowledge and a life-long love of reading.
In our house getting a library card is a reward for learning to read so we take the kids to get theirs at the end of first grade. My kids love the honor and the little wallet that comes with it. It’s a really big deal for them!! We reached out to the Lake County Libraries to get their rules for getting a card.
Most of your local libraries have the same basic rules:
- A parent or legal guardian must be on the account./sign the application. They usually need to be a card holder at that library (in good standing) and our generally responsible for anything the child does or checks out.
- Two forms of ID are needed to prove residency in the district and one must be a photo id (see suggested items at the end)
Below are the site specific requirements for the individual libraries, remember to always check with your home libraries youth service or circulation desk if you have questions about their policies or procedures.
Round Lake Area Public Library
Children must be Age 3 or older to get a card.
Children under the age of 14 must have a parent/guardian sign his/her application. For more information, please contact the Circulation Department at (847) 546-7060, press 3.
Wauconda Area Library
At Wauconda Area Library, children from birth on may obtain library cards provided that their parents or legal guardians reside in the Wauconda Area Library District and can produce a current photo ID that verifies their address (and if the ID does not, a piece of U.S. mail that shows their name and current in-district address may be substituted). Also, if the adult caregivers currently possess Wauconda Area Library cards, their cards must be in good standing in order for cards to be issued to their children.
As September is National Library Card Sign-up Month, children who show their library card to the Children’s librarian will receive a drawing slip for a chance to win baskets containing books, DVDs, toys, crafts and other fun items. They can enter the drawing once daily throughout the month. Additionally, children (and adults) who check out at least ten items per visit can spin the huge prize wheel at the Circulation Desk and win free books, coffee, tea, earbuds, coupons for Culver’s ice cream, and waivers for existing fines.
Cook Memorial Public Library District
Residents need to be 4 years of age to get his/her own library card. When the child signs up for a library card, s/he receives a library card holder (which often doubles as a little wallet for kids), a certificate, and a book bag.
Whenever a child gets a library card, staff makes a pretty big deal about welcoming him or her. Recently a mom who brought her little one in to sign up remarked about how pleased she was that staff made her youngster feel special; the mom still remembered the day she got her first library card. When I went to the Children’s Desk at Cook Park Library to borrow the book bag for the photo, one of the librarians quipped that she just might do a little Irish jig for a new card holder. Truly, any child receiving their first library card will be met with a warmly enthusiastic response.
Lake Villa District Library
As far as kids getting their own card, the only requirement we have is that they can write their name–even their version of writing their own name.
LVDL’s campaign for September is ‘We Want YOU to Get a Library Card! As an incentive to those who might have misplaced or have accrued fines on their card, we’re waiving the $1 replacement fee and fines up to $50. We want everyone to get a library card and use it. OFTEN! A library card gives you access to a world of information, entertainment and so much more–audiovisual materials, digital downloads, computers and Wi-Fi, meeting rooms as well as the ability to get materials from other libraries. You can even use your LVDL card at any public library in Illinois.
The North Chicago Public Library
Children’s Library Cards are for children ages 6 -17 years old.
Grayslake Area Public Library District
Grayslake has no age limit, it is the parent’s decision when they want their child to have their own card.
Warren-Newport Public Library
We always say that a library card is the best thing in your wallet, or school backpack!!!
Our policy does not have an age restriction other than that the parent or legal guardian must bring in two forms of identification with the parent’s current address to verify residency.
In other words, tiny people can get their first library card on their way home from the hospital after delivery! We also offer online card registration.
You know how much Little Lake County loves our libraries. Aside from providing great (FREE!) programming and storytime there are also a valuable resource for frugal entertainment for the whole family. According to the ALA:
libraries offer free access to important educational resources like online homework resources (96.5 percent) and educational programs, information sessions and training (99.5 percent), with content in virtually every school subject, including history, literature and science. In addition, over 89 percent of libraries offer access to e-books, while 39 percent of libraries provide e-readers for check-out by patrons.
Many of our local libraries are offering special rewards or incentives for getting your card this month, so if you don’t regularly visit your library, now is the time!
Suggested items for proof of street address include but are not limited to the following:
Driver’s license, State ID, FOID (Fire Owners ID), current bill dated within the past month (utility bill, credit card bill, etc.), auto registration, bank book, check book, recent report cards, voter’s registration, property tax bill, mortgage or lease papers, and matrícula card. Regular mail such as advertisements, greeting cards, and letters are not acceptable to obtain a library card.
Do your kids have library cards? How old were they when they got them?