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The monthly “Storytime in a Bag,” available free from the Baker County Library, includes a book, play activity and craft project, along with needed supplies.

Although in-person activities aren’t happening at the Baker County Library, the staff is putting together special kits and online events for youth.

Every Friday, families can log on for a live storytime at 10 a.m. through the library’s Facebook page. The stories are aimed at children from babies to second-graders.

These storytimes are recorded, so they’re still available after the live session ends.

“If they miss it, they can always access it later on,” said Missy Grammon, youth services coordinator.

On the first day of each month, “Storytime in a Bag” can be picked up at the library. These bags include a book, a play activity, a craft description and needed supplies, and a storytime tip.

The September storytime bag, for instance, contained “Freight Train” by Donald Crews, water beads for a color sorting activity, a rainbow craft (glue stick, pieces of paper, cotton balls and a paper template), and crayons for a color-by-number picture.

Library staff make up about 40 storytime bags. The next will be available Oct. 1 both inside the library and at the drive-thru window at 2400 Resort St.

Another free offering is the preschool packet compiled by the Early Learning Coalition.

Battle of the Books

Although it will look different this year, the library is still sponsoring local teams for Oregon Battle of the Books (OBOB).

There are three age groups: grades 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12. Those who sign up before Oct. 1 will receive a goodie bag.

(Ordinarily, grade 3 is not included in the local teams because it is in a separate school from grades 4-5. For this year only, third-graders can join because everything is online.)

With the OBOB program, children read from the provided book list and then practice answering questions. This year, practice sessions will take place online.

In past years, the readers tested their knowledge in battles against other teams or schools.

So far, the plan for this season is to have only local battles, generally in late winter.

“I think it will still be a lot of fun,” Grammon said. “We have good books on the list.”

OBOB sign-ups are in October. To learn more about the program, call the library at 541-523-6419 and ask for Grammon or Courtney Snyder.

Makers Club

Although the Makers Club cannot be held in person, library staff are making up activity kits twice a month. These are available inside the library, or at the drive-thru.

Novel writing

November is National Novel Writing Month, and each year Grammon runs a program for NaNoWriMo that encourages kids to write a novel in just one month.

(NaNoWriMo takes the first few letters of National Novel Writing Month.)

It is open to youth in grades 1-12. This year she will run two different age groups: grades 1-6 and grades 7-12.

This writing challenge will be virtual with online meet-ups to work on the novels.

Interested youth can sign up through the NaNoWriMo Young Writers Program, which means they can choose their word goal for the month.

“They can choose 100 words, or 18,000 words. Whatever they want,” Grammon said.

Writers then create their novel throughout the month with the goal of hitting their word-count milestone.

Those who are 13 and older can choose the adult version of NaNoWriMo, which has a goal of 50,000 words.

To sign up, go to www.ymp.nanowrimo.org. Young kids use the code ABAQTMWF. Grades 7 and older register with the code XEDHXMQQ.

Those codes can also be found on the library’s Facebook page.

Winter Book Club

Readers can sign up for the library’s winter book club in November. Youth are encouraged to sign up early to help choose the book.

There will be three age groups: grades 3-5, 6-8, and 9-12.

As of now, book club activities will be online.

Tutors

Child stuck on an algebra problem at 8 p.m.? All you need is a library card to utilize tutor.com, a service provided for free by the Baker County Library.

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Students can get help with math and other subjects, for free, through the Baker County Library’s online tutor service. Students log in with their library card number.

Students simply log in with their library card number. Find the link at www.bakerlib.org/kids-teens.

Online tutors are available on demand every day from noon to midnight for one-to-one help.

The tutors are professionally trained to help students in kindergarten through introductory-level college with math, science, English and social studies.

Once connected, the student can explain their question, and use an interactive whiteboard to solve the problem with the tutor’s guidance.

Adults can also use the service for help with a GED, adult education courses, and grammar help with a resume or work-related project.

Hours

The library is open daily, although inside visitors are limited — enter only if the “open” sign is on. Visitors are limited to 20 minutes of browsing.

The schedule:

• Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.

• Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

• Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

• Sunday, noon to 4 p.m.

The drive-thru is also open. Books can be reserved online at www.bakerlib.org

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