By: Tabitha Hudnall
The wait is over! Kindles and E-Books are now available to all students to check out in the library.
Kindles are a great way for students to read their favorite books and use some advanced technology at the same time. The Kindles have a six inch touch screen, built-in wifi, and each one has over 100 classic literature titles already downloaded to them.
Along with this awesome technology though, there are some restrictions. In order to check out a Kindle, students must take home the User’s Agreement regarding to the rules and how to take care of the Kindle. This paper also includes any fines and must be signed by a parent, then returned to Librarian Gail Benford. Students who wish to check out a Kindle should go to the library when there is plenty of time to go through all of the procedures, like at the beginning of class or lunch. All students checking out a Kindle must participate in a Device/ebook Training session with Mrs. Benford. This is only required the first time a student checks one out. When checking out a Kindle, students must have a current ID card and cannot have any outstanding books or library fines.
The Kindles are loaned for 21 days, including weekends, and renewals are not permitted. Students who want to check out a Kindle after returning one will be able to register on a waiting list, but there is a one-week waiting period. The chargers are not checked out with them though. Chargers are easily lost, and they are expensive, so they will be kept in the library. All of the Kindles are completely charged and inspected to make sure they are in good condition before they are checked out, and the battery lasts for a long time. If you check out a Kindle and the battery happens to die, take it to Mrs. Benford in the library and she will charge it. It can be picked back up once it is finished.
Also, students are not able to download anything to the Kindles. If everyone were to download things onto them, then the memory would become overcrowded and there would be no room for more books. If there is an eBook on the OverDrive system a student wants to borrow, ask library staff members to load the book onto the Kindle. These borrowed books will automatically return to the library after 21 days.
Each Kindle is kept in a case with directions on how to use them on the inside flap of the cover. Anyone who checks a Kindle out should read through these directions to make sure they are taken care of properly. When turning the kindles back in, do not put them in the drop box where the returned books go. Students who do this will receive a $5 fine. Books being tossed in will damage the Kindles. Be sure to hand them directly to library personnel to ensure their safety, and to ensure that you won’t have to pay for the broken Kindle.
The fines for the Kindles are a lot more than that for late or lost books. There is a $1 fine for every day the Kindle is late, with a maximum fine up to $99. If the case is damaged or lost, there is a $10 replacement fee. If the Kindle is lost or broken, it costs $99 to replace it.
If a student does not want to check out one of the Kindles, and have access to the internet on their own personal Kindle, tablet, or smartphone, they can use the library’s new websites that provide free ebook checkouts and downloads.
One of these programs is Follet Shelf. Many students already use Follet Destiny to keep track of the books they read and even look for books they want to read. Follet Shelf has a wide array of ebooks for PC, Mac, laptop, netbook, and some select mobile devices. You must be logged into the program to look through or check out in the ebook catalog. The username for Follet Shelf is the nine digit student ID number, and the password is “rihs.”
The other program is OverDrive, which has a huge variety of ebooks, audiobooks, and other digital content. This website is better accessible to students because the program downloads ebooks and audiobooks to iPods, iPhones, iPad, Android, Kindles, Sony Readers, and other devices. Students need to have an Amazon account to have access to these ebooks and other content.
Having this technology available to students is a great opportunity. This type of technology is becoming a part of our everyday lives, and having Kindles and eBooks give all students a chance to experience it.