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We Have Stories to Tell

We Have Stories to Tell
"My Queasy Rainy Day" by
Mayra Armas is just one
story in the collection

We Have Stories to Tell is a project of the Outreach Services department of the Santa Cruz Public Libraries. To demonstrate the importance of family stories and to provide opportunities for children to practice their oral and written English skills, Library staff works with groups of children during the winter to exchange family stories. Each child then selects a story, writes and illustrates it, and binds it into a handmade hardcover book. Two hardcover books are made--one for the student and one for the Library. The Library copies are cataloged and entered into the Library database. The finished books are displayed at the Santa Cruz County Reading Association's Student Author Fair in the spring.

A strength of the project is that the children work with tutors. Tutors have included students from the University of California at Santa Cruz, seniors from Dominican Oaks, and parents. Groups have included children living in farmworker communities, children attending local schools, children who live near the Live Oak Family Resource Center, homeschooling children in Boulder Creek, and families who work with SCPL staff at the Museum of Art and History during the winter MAH class schedule.

In 2009, SCPL Library staff offered a one-day bookbinding class on Saturday, January 10 at the Museum of Art and History. Beginning on March 21, SCPL Library staff will offer a 6-week WE HAVE STORIES TO TELL class in the MAH's classroom on Front Street in Santa Cruz.

We Have Stories to Tell is a community project to share stories and encourage participation in the world of books and libraries.