TV at the Lakeland Library

library.jpgThere was a letter to the Ledger recently that addresses a TV in the new children’s area of the Lakeland Library (100 Lake Morton Drive).

I’ll quote a bit:

Libraries are for reading, not television viewing. The purpose of the library should be to encourage our children and youths to pick up a book and read. Many children will choose a television over a book if given the opportunity. — Karrie Shelnut

While I agree with her concern, I disagree with her call to “turn off the TV.” My response to her letter is after the jump…

Your experience is different than mine. I’ve yet to see the DVD display on at all in the puzzle area.

However, libraries are no longer quiet “book only” locations. Now they’re meeting rooms, play areas, computer labs, and other multi-use areas.

The DVD display I’ve seen is in such a multi-use area. If you want to sit and read there are other areas of the library for that purpose.

Many children will choose a television over a book if given the opportunity.

Video is not the culprit, no more so than radio was in the 30s and 40s. It’s still the parents who must model the behavior they want to teach their [I]own[/I] children.

The Library, however, must strive to be as flexible as possible for all patrons. While your child might be able to watch some of the educational shows available on cable, not every family has that opportunity.

I’d welcome the Library giving other children the chance to watch [I]Charlie and Lola[/I] every now and then. Especially when the children can then immediately model their new behavior skills with their peers.