Howard County Library
Teacher Notes From Howard County Library - Life Skills Category
  • Money Matters 2 Teens

    Financial education is crucial for all age groups.  During Financial Literacy Month, encourage your students to attend these money-minded classes.

    In Who Wants to be a Millionaire, teens explore the myths and realities about becoming a millionaire, then learn strategies for setting and achieving financial goals.  Register to attend the Thursday, April 7 class at Howard County Library Savage Branch or the Monday, April 11 class at Howard County Library Central Branch.  Both sessions begin at 7:00 pm.

    Teens can choose to Take the Spending Challenge.  This interactive game leads students through 16 weeks of purchases and payments in a single hour.  Students begin with a regular “paycheck” and a fictional credit card, then make choices about how much to save, how much to spend, and whether to pay by cash or credit.  Register to attend the Wednesday, April 6 class at Howard County Library East Columbia Branch or the Thursday, April 14 class at Howard County Library Elkridge Branch.  Both sessions begin at 7:00 pm.  (To request a session of Take the Spending Challenge in your very own classroom, complete the online Curriculum Enhancements request.)

    Those teens who are dreaming of the day they’ll be driving, will be interested in Your First Set of Wheels.  Students will learn about hidden costs like maintenance and insurance, then create a savings plan.  Register to attend the Tuesday, April 5 class at Howard County Library Glenwood Branch or the Wednesday, April 13 class at Howard County Library Miller Branch.  Both sessions begin at 7:00 pm.

    Katie George – Administration Office

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  • Mean Girls

    image of sad girl with mean girls in background

    Sugar and spice and everything nice…not always.

    Middle school students and their parents are invited to explore the complex world of girls at Horizon Family Communication Night:  Mean Girls.  Expert Deborah West leads discussion and exercises that offer the keys to understanding Queen Bees, Gamma Girls, and surviving the intricate female social hierarchy.

    Register for the Wednesday, March 16 workshop at Howard County East Columbia Branch or the Tuesday, March 29 workshop at Howard County Library Elkridge Branch.  Both sessions begin at 6:30 pm.

    Co-sponsored by the Women’s Giving Circle and he Horizon Councils.

    Katie George – Administration Offices

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  • Teen 2 Teen

    image of girl holding piece of paper that read i have a voiceExperience can be one of the best teachers.

    High school students and their families are invited to learn from teens who have “been there.” During Teen 2 Teen: Alcohol Drugs and All In-between, a panel of teens describes their experiences with substance abuse and how they overcame those challenges to start making healthier choices. Discussion follows with a drug and alcohol abuse counselor about what parents should look for and what they can do.

    The discussion takes place at Miller Branch from 7 – 8:30 pm on Wednesday, February 2.  Register to ensure a seat.

    Katie George – Administration Office

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  • Creative Stationery

    image of texting on hand held device

    Let’s give those thumbs a rest, shall we? Texting may be the “in” way to communicate, but students can develop excellent composition skills writing old-fashioned letters.

    Remember when you actually sat down and wrote a letter (in thanks or just to correspond) to dear Aunt Freda, when you had never heard of texting, or even the ever-popular LOL? We want to bring a creative outlet to your students that doesn’t involve electronics – just plain paper and pen. Here’s the twist: rather than regular notebook paper, your students will create their own stationery for a one-of-a-kind writing experience.

    Creative Stationery takes place Wednesday, January 5 from 7-8 pm at the Glenwood Branch Library. Registration is required and opens on Wednesday, December 22.

    Amy Stephens – Howard County Library, Glenwood Branch


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  • How to Conquer the College Essay

    image of student trying to climb up a stack of filesHoward County Library presented Conquer the College Essay last Thursday.  Topics covered included:

    • What do those questions really mean?
    • What are admissions officers looking for?
    • How do I even start writing this thing?

    We thought we’d post those details, right here!

    The College Board’s web site has lots of succinct, well-organized information on decoding the questions, what answers admissions officers want to see, three easy steps to starting that essay, and time management. There are even two sample essays, with comments included, so students can see what recruiters are really thinking.

    For those students who want to read more samples, there are plenty of successful college essays out there. Teen Ink publishes real college essays written by real high school students. Connecticut College has posted quite a few essays written by students who have been accepted to that school…and graduated.

    Students can have a tutor review their work. Just log onto the Library’s Online Homework Assistance to upload an essay. A tutor will read the essay and return it with comments on how to make it a stronger, more organized argument, as well as corrections to spelling and grammar.

    And books. Don’t forget the books! We have tons of books on writing the essay and completing that college application.

    Good luck…and don’t forget to write!


    Katie George – Administration Offices

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  • Assignment Alert!

    image of explanation mark inside a red triangle

    So what, exactly, is an Assignment Alert?

    Is it broadcast on the police band radio? (nope)

    Is it a submarine command?  (A-OOGAH!  A-OOGAH!) (that’s just silly)

    It couldn’t possibly have anything to do with homework, could it? well …

    YES! It has everything to do with homework!  And our ability to ensure your students have everything they need to complete it successfully!

    When you assign a research project, book report, or any work that you suspect may land your students in the Library, you’re invited to visit our web site and complete an Assignment Alert. This online form is sent directly to the Research Specialist assigned to your school.

    In response, we may put related materials on display, call in additional resources from other branches, or prepare to offer instruction in the use of our electronic resources. We may contact you to confirm the assignment details or offer to visit your class to provide additional research instruction to your students.We may even be able to assist that one student who arrives at the Library remembering he had to research an African nation…but not which one or the questions he was supposed to answer.

    Every little bit helps – we love to help!  Visit –> Students and Teachers –> Teachers to assist us, so we can assist your students.

    Katie George – Administration Offices

    This Week’s Hi-Lights: Research E-Books

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  • Bandana Bags

    image of bandana bags

    Crafty and creative students can join us at Savage Branch on Thursday, November 18 at 7 pm to turn a colorful bandana into a cool bag. Register online or call 410-880-5980.

    According to the 40 Developmental Assets for healthy young people, building blocks that encourage constructive use of time include creative activities and youth programs in the community. Library classes – creative, literary, and otherwise – work to meet these goals.

    John Jewitt – Savage Branch

    This Week’s Hi-Lights: Islamic Calligraphy and events you won’t want to miss…the second time around!

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  • Conquer the College Essay

    image of college student frustrated

    What is more terrifying than a pop-quiz? More overwhelming than a term paper? More puzzling than the Sphinx? It’s the dreaded college essay that looms menacingly in the lives of college-bound seniors.

    Procrastinating pupils can eliminate the apprehension by attending Conquer the College Essay. Learn what schools really want to know they ask which famous historical figure you’d like to dine with or, given your choice, what animal you would be.  Examine successful sample essays to discover what attracts an admissions officer.  Then, students can stop putting it off until tomorrow and develop a strategy for committing their strengths to paper.

    Students can register for Conquer the College Essay on Thursday, October 21 at 7 pm at Howard County Library Miller Branch.

    Katie George – Administration Offices

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  • Destination Graduation…and Beyond

    image of a man carrying a question mark on his back trying decided which path to take

    High school students can be under a lot of pressure–from school, parents, peers, and coaches.  They’re working through issues with body image, substance abuse, and relationships. For some reason,they all seem sleep-deprived. Then, we start lecturing them to think about their futures…

    Sometimes, it’s just too much.

    Know a student who’s feeling the pressure?  Encourage them to register for Destination Graduation…and Beyond!  On Monday, October 4 at 7 pm at Howard County Library East Columbia Branch, Life Coach Kathy Norton teaches how to manage stress, define dreams, and develop a plan for reaching goals such as getting into college and choosing the best career path.

    Let’s give them the tools to stay on the right path.

    Katie George – Administration Office

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  • Chill Out

    image of polar bears relaxing

    Successful students know certain tips and tricks. But when they get super-stressed, it’s time to Chill Out

    They can learn important skills of organization, concentration and relaxation, as Library instructors provide attendees with tools to start the new school year off with success in mind.

    So, send your students to Chill Out at the Savage Branch of Howard County Library on Thursday, September 23 at 7 pm.

    John Jewitt – Branch Location

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