The Value of a Library Card

Library cards are the golden ticket in to a wonderful world of unlimited stories and untold opportunities.  Allowing your child to have their own library card is a valuable experience.  When children receive their own library card, parents reinforce the value of literacy and education while empowering the child to consider his/her own role in their information needs.  Additionally children learn the important lesson of responsibility when they are in charge of returning their books on time and paying for fines on any overdue or damaged items. 

For a young child the action of handing the librarian their very own card to check out items can give them a sense of pride which can set the groundwork for a lifelong love of reading.  For older children, having a library card allows them to have freedom to make their own choice of reading material. It also gives them access electronic material such as databases which are beneficial to their education. Finally, by not having to check out your child’s books on your card, you can check out more books for yourself to read!

Your child’s library card is valuable for the experiences it gives, but it is also valuable to your pocketbook. To see the return your family gets in library services for the tax dollars you spend, visit our Library Value Calculator at It’s a great tool that illustrates how shopping locally can indirectly help you save.

Some tips for library card holders to help their experience be even better:

Worried about losing library books?  

Designate one bag that all library books get returned to once you have finished the book and keep this bag in the same place at all times.  Make it special by allowing your child to pick out their own library bag and explain their responsibility for keeping track of library books. Also ask about Library Elf which sends email or text reminders about library due dates.

Worried about losing the card? 

Provide your child with a special billfold or key ring. Keep the card with the designated library bag or in your car.

Worried about fines?

First, make sure you keep track of books and due dates.  Second, read your books in clean environments and avoid reading library books while eating, near water, or curious animals.  Also having a regular library day on your calendar keeps you in the habit of visiting the library and bringing back books as you are finished reading them.

For more information about getting a library card contact the Help Desk at For more tips on teaching your children about library card use, contact the Children’s Help Desk at