Summer is for vacations and reading, but it’s also a great time to try new things, find new hobbies and embark on new challenges. While the warmer months are often seen as “off season” for many, it’s also a time to encourage growth and exploration. Today we’ll explore the importance of embracing summer as a time of discovery and share some ideas on how you can transform your library into a hub of excitement and knowledge!

Variety is the Spice of Life

Are you aware of the incredible impact of sports-sampling? It turns out that trying out different activities brings a multitude of benefits that go far beyond the playing field:

  • Sports-sampling is the practice of trying out different sports and activities during childhood or adolescence, rather than specializing in a particular sport at an early age. 
  • This helps kids develop a diverse set of physical skills, coordination and athletic abilities. It also allows children to discover their strengths and develop a love for physical activity! 
  • This study from the National Library of Medicine says that early sports specialization can be associated with musculoskeletal injury risk, burnout and attrition from sport.
  • “Sports sampling mitigates these risks and helps kids stay active longer. Research has shown that kids who sample sports have increased physical capacity and motor skills, an increased ability to translate those skills to other sports, stay in sports longer, and are more likely to build social emotional skills through sports.” (Aspen Institute)

The Library’s Role in Growth & Exploration

Libraries already play an active role in the summer plans of kids nationwide. When school is done for the summer many kids will turn to their local library for summer reading programs, activities and opportunities to stay connected with other kids in the community. Here are a few ways libraries can encourage young patrons to explore new activities, and maybe even discover a hidden hobby or talent:

  • Curate book displays that promote different sports and hobbies – this can inspire kids to expand their horizons and try new things.
  • Organize workshops or active sessions throughout the week highlighting different activities like yoga or mindfulness. If your library has green space you can also incorporate sports like soccer or tennis!
  • Partner with a local parks and recreation program to set up a sports equipment lending program that allows patrons to borrow equipment for various activities. This can include soccer balls, basketballs, tennis rackets and more. 
  • Create a sports-themed reading challenge and provide reading lists for various age groups. 
  • Host movie screenings featuring inspiring sports films, which helps bring the community together and also sparks interesting conversations about the values and life lessons portrayed in the movies.
  • Organize a sports-sampling event where patrons have the opportunity to try out different sports in a fun and supportive environment. If your library subscribes to Hiveclass you can easily do this by setting up stations with tablets or computers that are showing skills videos in a variety of sports! 

Libraries are an influential structure in the community, and can become catalysts for personal and physical development. Especially for young patrons who have so much to learn and explore. As you dive deep into the warmer months of the year, we encourage you to embrace the summer of discovery, empower your patrons and enjoy the joy of exploration. With Hiveclass you can not only inspire a lifelong love for learning, but also a curiosity and appreciation for physical activity, which translates into a healthier lifestyle.

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