When you go to the second floor of Laramie County Library, pass the Ask Here Desk and head towards our youth computers, three rows of computers in particular are sure to catch your eye! They sit towards the windows, and their brightly colored keyboards add to the already vibrant and cheerful décor of the library’s youth collection. These colorful machines are the library’s learning computers, and they are responsible for much more than added decoration.
The learning computers are early literacy devices designed specifically for children ages 2—8 to provide fun and educational learning activities. Thanks to a generous McMurry Grant to Libraries via Wyoming Community Foundation, Laramie County Library is able to provide 9 of these computers in the Cheyenne library, 2 on the Bookmobile, and 1 each in Pine Bluffs and Burns, allowing children who visit any of the library’s branches to engage with award-winning educational content.
The educational content on the computers covers seven curricular areas: math, science, social studies, reading, art, writing, and computer skills. Each computer houses over 70 educational apps, all of which are designed to help familiarize children with core curriculum in an interactive format that makes learning fun. Each computer has a myriad of games and activities that keep young children entertained while simultaneously teaching them foundational learning concepts.
Better yet, the learning computers are not connected to the Internet, ensuring that children can enjoy the songs, sounds, games, images, and videos in an entirely safe environment without the risk of coming across undesirable websites or content. Each computer’s mouse is designed specifically for young users, and the touchscreens ensure that children are learning to utilize contemporary technology while developing their fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
Laramie County Library System’s mission includes “supporting and encouraging lifelong learning and adventure,” and the learning computers are an excellent tool with which to begin the lifelong learning adventure at your local library.