Library

Fairfax County, Virginia

CONTACT INFORMATION: Office: 8:30–4:30 M–F. Branch hours vary.

703-324-3100
TTY 711

12000 Government Center Parkway, Suite 324
Fairfax, VA 22035

Jessica Hudson,
Director

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25 Things You Can Do With Your Library Card for Free!

FCPL library card

  1. Learn a new language with Mango Languages
  2. Prepare for the SAT with Learning Express
  3. Search the millions of items in the online catalog
  4. Use the WiFi or a public computer
  5. Learn how to navigate the Internet
  6. Get book recommendations from My Perfect Read
  7. Use reliable, kid-friendly resources to do homework
  8. Check out books in large print for easier reading
  9. Trace your family tree
  10. Get picture books for storytelling at home
  11. Create a resume and apply for jobs online
  12. Bring your child to Storytime and meet other parents
  13. Have your children participate in our 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program
  14. Receive weekly email updates to see what’s happening at your library
  15. Check out a Nature Backpack and gain free admission to any state park
  16. Reserve a meeting room for your nonprofit group
  17. Attend an interesting lecture by a local historian
  18. Shape up with an exercise video
  19. Consult consumer guides to decide what insurance, tablet, computer, car or washing machine to buy
  20. Join a book discussion group or check out a book discussion kit for your own book club.
  21. Borrow a thermal camera to check your home or business for hot and cold spots
  22. Attend an English Conversation Group to improve your English Language skills
  23. Download eBooks, eAudiobooks and magazines from anywhere with Overdrive and RBdigital
  24. Learn how to help your child gain early literacy skills
  25. Get help from the ultimate search engine – a librarian

librarian showing student a reference book on shelf

library card for Fairfax County Public Library branches Read full article September 6, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/images/library/library%20card%20with%20dots2.jpg 1
Six Tips for a Successful School Year

librarian helping a student find a book

1) Get Support and Guidance from Library Staff

You are not alone at the library. Library staff are trained to help students find legitimate information sources online including historical newspapers, speeches, reference databases, trusted websites and more.

kids read with dad in a reading nook

2) Use Library Branches to Read and Study

We’ve got cozy reading nooks for reading in our branches, tables and chairs, quiet study rooms and small group study rooms.

3) Take Advantage of Free Online Tutoring Sessions with a Virginia-certified Teacher.

CREDO Reference service logoFree Homework help is available 24/7 through the library. Among the online resources, there’s live homework help with a teacher through Credo Reference, a unique service for students in grades 3-12.

4) Find Books, Magazines and Newspapers

Whether you’re studying classics, history or current events, the library has over 2.2 million items in our collection including digital material and print material.

5) Use Library Resources to prep for Fall SATs and ACTs

Several different online sources offer test preparation for SAT, AP, ACT and SOL exams. Visit Learning Express to get started.

high school students taking SAT test

6) Access Free Wi-Fi and Computers.

That enables you to plug in and do just about any online research needed for school assignments.

grade school boys on their computers at the library

Let the library be your partner in academic success.

students prep for SAT and ACT tests Read full article August 20, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/images/library/exam-prep_thumbnail.jpg 1
Kids of Any Age Can Learn to Code

screen shot of Scratch web pageErik Missio in his post Why Kids Should Learn to Code and How to Get them Started, calls coding a “new literacy—a subject so important that every child needs to know the basics to excel in our rapidly changing world.”

One tool to introduce kids to coding (also known as computer programming) is called Scratch, which was developed at MIT. Kids can program their own interactive stories, games and animations through this simple program. Scratch, “primarily designed for 8 to 16-year-olds, can also be used by people of all ages, including younger children with their parents,” according to the Scratch website.

The library provides many opportunities to introduce children to coding including library programs, books and the online database Lynda.com for libraries. (Lynda.com offers thousands of instructional videos; use the search function to find one for yourself or your kids.) You can also introduce your child to Scratch from the Scratch website.

“Fairfax County Public Library is committed to providing opportunities for children to learn about programming,” said Margaret Kositch, technology director. “For kids, coding is just another kind of puzzle, and there are many long-term benefits to equipping children with this problem-solving skill.”  

Here are three upcoming library coding program for kids:

Learn to Code: Scratch, Tuesday, August 14, 10:30–11:30 a.m., Kingstowne Library

Age 8-12. Registration required.

CoderDojo: Kids Learn to Code, Saturday, August 25, 1-3 p.m., Pohick Regional Library. Age 7-17. Registration required.

Hour of Code: Pirate Plunder, Tuesday, September 11, 4:30-5:30 p.m. Dolley Madison Library. Age 6-12. No registration but limited to the first 20 children to arrive.

Here are a few books from the library’s collection, click any book cover to place a hold:

Book cover: Scratch book cover: Scratch Challenge book cover: Coding Projects in Scratch

Find additional titles in the library catalog or work with library staff at your local library branch.

Learning Scratch helps “young people learn to think creatively, reason systematically, and work collaboratively — essential skills for life in the 21st century.” (From https://scratch.mit.edu/about/.) “The ability to code computer programs is an important part of literacy in today’s society. When people learn to code in Scratch, they learn important strategies for solving problems, designing projects, and communicating ideas.”

You can learn more about why teaching kids to code is important through a Q&A with educational scholar Paul Goldberg from the nonprofit EDC and also 9 Reasons Your Child Should Learn to Code from IDTech a global company offering technology instruction.

Not convinced yet? Watch this Ted Talk to learn more about the benefits of teaching children to code and then get started coding!

Read full article August 2, 2018 1
Library Launches "My Perfect Read"

collage of profile pictures of all readers advisors

Knock. Knock.

Who’s There?

A fabulous book you’re going to love.

Great, what’s the title?

Visit My Perfect Read to discover it.

My Perfect Read is a new way to access readers advisors online to get personalized book recommendations emailed to you. 

Readers advisors, though always available at your local branch, will now also be just a click away online. With an estimated 175,000 books published annually in the United States, this is one way to make sure you don’t miss your next favorite book – or author.

Here’s how to get started: Go to research.fairfaxcounty.gov/my-perfect-read.

  1. Browse through the reader advisor profiles.
  2. Find an advisor who matches your interests.
  3. Use the “At Your Service” tab on your advisor’s profile to connect.

Your readers advisor will send you suggested titles to read.

That’s it! Enjoy your books and tell a friend.

My Perfect Read graphic Read full article July 10, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/My%20Perfect%20Read-1175x682.jpg 1
Engler Named to Library Board of Trustees


Brian Engler (photo courtesy of Bruce F. Press Photography).

Brian Engler of Burke has been appointed to the Fairfax County Public Library Board of Trustees representing the Braddock District. Engler brings a strong background of public service and leadership along with a commitment to advance learning and literacy through community outreach.

Engler has served since 2012 as Chair of the Board of Directors of the Fairfax Library Foundation, and as such has spearheaded fundraising efforts directly supporting the library’s programs and resources.

In another area of service to the library, he is a charter life member of the Friends of the Burke Centre Library and serves as Secretary of the Board. In this role, he supports fundraising activities—principally used book sales—and provides photographic and other support to the staff of his community library.

Engler is an elected At-Large Trustee and Vice President of the Burke Centre Conservancy and a Fellow of the Military Operations Research Society. He also currently serves as a board member of the Center for Inquiry, an international non-profit dedicated to fostering a secular society based on reason, science and freedom of inquiry. 

Engler’s professional career was as an officer with the U.S. Navy. Later he served as an operations research analyst in private industry. Following that, he served as Executive Vice President of the Military Operations Research Society (MORS), a national, professional, educational not-for-profit society.

Read full article July 3, 2018 1
Reston Regional Library receives "The Great American Read" Programming Grant from ALA and PBS

Grant will support library programs about Americans’ best-loved books

man urging participationHow can we pick just one? If you are asked your favorite work of fiction, can you name it?

The Great American Read, presented by PBS, will explore and celebrate the power of reading. In eight episodes beginning May 22 and ending in October, Americans will select the #1 book from 100 of our best-loved novels.

Fairfax County Public Library is proud to be a participating library in this national celebration of reading. Reston Regional Library is one of 50 libraries nationwide to receive a grant from the American Library Association (ALA) and PBS to host programs around the television series. The Reston branch has the support of and will be working with local PBS station, WETA.

“We are delighted to be part of such a unique initiative that encourages appreciation of reading and the world of discovery opened to us through books,” Library Director Jessica Hudson said.

Watch a video about The Great American Read and see the top 100 book list.

The library’s programming for “The Great American Read” will kick off with a premiere party for the series and special screenings for each of the episodes; offer a lecture series by local scholars including a roundtable debate on what makes a “great novel;” host writing workshops for adults and teens; hold an author talk by Newbery medal winner and Reston native, Kwame Alexander; and host a green screen photo booth for people to take pictures superimposed onto famous scenes from their favorite of 100 best-loved books in America.

How many have you read?

PBS' The Great American Read Read full article May 14, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/images/news/Great%20American%20Read.jpg 1
Library Board of Trustees Elects Officers

Miriam Smolen has been elected chairman of the Fairfax County Public Library Board of Trustees. A resident of Fairfax, Smolen has served as the Providence District representative to the board since 2015.

Miriam Smolen
     Miriam Smolen

Fran Millhouser has been elected as the vice chairman. Millhouser, a resident of Falls Church, has served as the Mason District representative to the Board since 2015.

Fran Millhouser
     Fran Millhouser

Their terms begin July 1, 2018, and last one year.

The Library Board of Trustees is responsible for library policies and for making budget recommendations to the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors. The 12-member volunteer Board comprises one member from each of the nine supervisory districts in Fairfax County, each appointed by the district supervisor; one member-at-large, approved by the Chairman of the Board; one member appointed by the City of Fairfax Council; and one member nominated by the School Board.

Library board meetings are usually held the second Wednesday of each month (except August) at the George Mason Regional Library, located at 7001 Little River Turnpike in Annandale. Please visit the Fairfax County public meetings calendar to confirm dates and locations.

For more information visit the library’s Board of Trustees page.

 

Read full article July 5, 2018 0
Delegate Mark Sickles Honors Library Volunteers

Twenty-One of Your Neighbors Were Honored This Month At Fairfax County Public Library

In addition to being celebrated for the number of hours given to the library, five volunteers were recognized for providing volunteer service that was deemed exceptional by library staff. The impact of volunteers on daily library services cannot be over emphasized. In calendar year 2017, 1,581 volunteers dedicated over 115,000 hours to the library.

These treasured volunteers were publically recognized and applauded at the recent library board of trustees meeting by staff, trustees and Delegate Mark Sickles, who served as MC at the event.

Sickles said, “Volunteers play a significant role in the library’s ability to provide the highest customer service to county residents.” Sharing a quote that he said “truly recognizes the spirit of volunteerism,” Sickles said: “‘Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.’”

“‘Volunteering is the ultimate exercise in democracy. You vote in elections once a year, but when you volunteer, you vote every day about the kind of community you want to live in.’”

The following volunteers are helping build the community we all want to live in, with a strong and well-loved library that supports all residents.

2018 Volunteer Star Awardees:

Exceptional Service Honorees

  • Margaret Culyba, Burke Centre Library
  • Jennifer Brooks, Herndon Fortnightly Library
  • Jaimi Turgeon, Herndon Fortnightly Library
  • Pauline Reid, Oakton Library
  • Georgia Chirieleison, Patrick Henry

Length of Service Volunteers

5,000 Hours
  • Su Davis, Reston Regional Library
3,000 Hours
  • Sandra Griffith, City of Fairfax Regional Library
  • Juanita Broome, Kings Park Library
1,000 Hours
  • John Florio, Burke Centre Library
  • Caroline Wilkinson, Burke Centre Library
  • Ronak Mohammed, Centreville Regional Library
  • Diane Redmond, Centreville Regional Library
  • Emmi Rose Ayo, Chantilly Regional Library
  • Maggie Belsan, City of Fairfax Regional Library
  • Anita Lopez, Kings Park Library
  • Betty Mackenzie, Kings Park Library
  • Yolanda Gaines, Kingstowne Library
  • Dianne McCune, Kingstowne Library
  • Susan Luvison, Oakton Library
  • Leanna Bell, Patrick Henry Library
  • Ro Hofford, Patrick Henry Library

 

 

thank you to our volunteers Read full article April 12, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/images/news/thanks-to-our-volunteers-736x469.jpg 0
Library Week in Fairfax County, April 8-14

Library Board of Trustee members join the Board of Supervisors for a proclamation recognizing Library Week 2018 in Fairfax County

Proclamation declaring April 8-14, 2018 as Library Week in Fairfax CountyThe Fairfax County Board of Supervisors recognized April 8-14 as Library Week in Fairfax County with a special proclamation during its March 20 meeting. Among other notable services, the proclamation lauded the public library for “supporting public safety, family services, mental and physical health, business development, information dissemination and child development and education.”

In thanking the Board of Supervisors, Miriam Smolen, Vice Chairman of the Library Board of Trustees, also recognized the “high-quality staff of the library’s 23 branches, and the 1,581 volunteers who donated 115,486 hours to the library last year.” She also applauded the financial contributions from the different Friends’ of the library groups and from the Fairfax Library Foundation for helping to enhance the library’s services.

The library is pleased to join libraries nationwide in celebrating the many ways libraries lead their communities through the transformative services, programs and expertise they offer. First sponsored in 1958, National Library Week is a national observance sponsored by the American Library Association (ALA) and libraries across the country each April. This year’s theme is “Libraries Lead.” It is a time to celebrate the contributions of our nation's libraries and librarians and to promote library use and support. All types of libraries—school, public, academic and special—participate.

National Library Week 2018 Logo - Libraries Lead Read full article March 28, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/NLW%20libraries%20lead2.jpg 0 Center
Three New Appointees Named to Library Board of Trustees

Jane Miscavage of Vienna, Stella Pekarsky of Centreville and Philip Rosenthal of Fairfax Station have been appointed to the Fairfax County Public Library Board of Trustees. Miscavage is an at large delegate, while Pekarsky represents the Sully District and Rosenthal represents the Springfield District.

Jane MiscavageMiscavage is an award-winning public affairs strategist who will serve on the library’s public relations committee. Currently she serves as vice president of outreach for the Fairfax County Council of PTAs supporting 175 local PTAs. She is a bookseller at Bards Alley Bookstore, an independent community bookstore in Vienna that she helped launch in 2017. Among her career accomplishments, she has: overseen grassroots advocacy efforts on behalf of Fairfax County Public Schools, including the successful campaign that led to the first fully-funded schools budget (FY 2017) in 10 years; managed communications campaigns for non-profit, political, corporate and social service clients; been a substitute teacher; and served as President of the Thoreau Middle School PTA where she oversaw fundraising for a major school renovation. Miscavage has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Illinois.

Jane MiscavagePekarsky is a child advocate with extensive leadership experience, including managing programs, budgets and volunteers, and teaching and coordinating youth services for diverse populations. Currently she is co-owner of Skyway Air Taxi of Manassas where she manages strategic planning, marketing and customer relations. She serves as Secretary for the Fairfax Council of PTAs and is a member of the education committee of the Fairfax Chapter of the NAACP. Earlier, she served as president of the Greenbriar West Parent Teacher Association where she helped develop after school programs and coordinated all events; served as president of her Homeowners Association in Centreville; and advocated for students’ interests as an ESOL Teacher in Fairfax. She will serve on the library’s ad hoc policy committee. Pekarsky has bachelor’s and master’s degrees from George Mason University.

Jane MiscavageRosenthal is president of Nationwide Credit Corporation in Alexandria where he directs all management, personnel and overall operations. As part of that role, he oversaw the merging of National Capitol Adjustment Corp. with Nationwide Credit Corporation in 2000. He has advanced throughout the ranks of the American Collectors Association International, having held each executive officer position, culminating in serving as president in 1999-2000. He was twice awarded the Paul Bunyan Award, ACA’s highest honor. Currently he serves on ACA’s board of directors. He is a current member and past chairman of the Fairfax County Community Action Advisory Board and a member of the National Federation of Independent Business, among other business and civic organizations. Rosenthal will serve on the library’s finance committee. He has a bachelor’s degree from West Virginia University.

The Fairfax County Seal Read full article February 22, 2018 /library/sites/library/files/Assets/images/2012_08_fairfaxcountyseal_cmyk.jpg 0 Top