From the Harford County Public Library:
Harford County Public Library unveiled the expansion of their LEAP: Learn, Explore and Play Science kit collection on December 15th. LEAP kits consist of high quality science equipment, materials and resources, and use play as a motivator for children to explore science and technology. Housed in the Edgewood branch since 2007, this recent expansion now includes kits at Aberdeen, Bel Air and Whiteford and has grown three-fold in the last six months due to an overwhelming support from the community.
The Harford County Public Library Foundation received a $10,000 grant from NMTC (Northeastern Maryland Technology Council) to launch the LEAP Sponsorship Program, a matching funds program that offers firms and individuals interested in supporting STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) learning the opportunity to sponsor one or more LEAP kits. Since its initiation six months ago, the program has attracted nine new donors and added over 20 kits to the collection.
“We are thrilled to see the outstanding response from the community,” stated Amber C. Shrodes, Foundation Director for Harford County Library. “With this expansion more families will have easier access to these exciting learning tools.”
Representatives from SAIC and NMTC were on hand to see the kits arrive at the Whiteford branch and had the opportunity to explore the new LEAP space, a science-themed area designed to encourage children to get hands-on experience with the kits. Furniture and decorations for the LEAP space were generously funded by the North Harford Friends of the Library.
“We need more young students exposed to the wonders of science so that they will become excited about the subject and be encouraged totake STEM courses in school,” stated John M. Ferriter, Senior Vice President, SAIC, a sponsor of the collection. “The Harford County Public Library LEAP Program provides science activities for children and their parents enabling them to explore at home how fun science and engineering can be! SAIC is proud to be part of this marvelous program,” added Ferriter.
In an increasingly technological world, STEM skills are crucial to a child’s success. Harford County Public Library in recognizing the importance of fostering STEM talent launched the LEAP program in November 2007. LEAP kits include topics such as bridge engineering, chemistry, dinosaurs, the human body and weather. LEAP programming is open to the public and sessions are led by skilled library staff. The Maryland Science Center, National Aquarium in Baltimore and the Anita C. Leight Estuary Center along with the Harford County Astronomical Society are also partners for many of these interactive programs.
“Harford County Public Library is very proud of the services we provide to the community and the LEAP program is a vital component to what we offer to our customers,” stated Mary Hastler, Library Director. “We understand the importance of STEM learning for today’s generation and we are grateful for the amazing support we receive from our sponsors. These partnerships help enable the Library to be a vibrant and innovative resource for the community.”
The LEAP kit collection can be reserved online and sent to the branch of your choice for pickup. To browse the collection, please go to HCPLonline.org/programs/leap. For further information on how to sponsor a LEAP kit please contact Amber C. Shrodes at shrodes@HCPLonline.org or by calling 410 273 5600 x2283.
The LEAP Kit Collection expansion was unveiled at the Whiteford Library on December 15. In attendance to celebrate were (from left to right) Linda Zuckerman, Asst. Branch Manager; Heidi Richardson, Branch Manager; John Ferriter, Sr. Vice President, SAIC; Jeannine Finton, LEAP Librarian; Amber C. Shrodes, Foundation Director; Mary Hastler, Library Director; John Casner, CEO, NMTC; Betsy Galbreath, President, North Harford Friends; Dennis Heiber, LEAP Volunteer.
The LEAP Kit Collection expansion was unveiled at the Whiteford Library on December 15. Guests and children get a first glimpse at the LEAP kits available at the library.
Children play with a new LEAP kit now available at the Whiteford Library.