Carrie Scott Banks has worked with and on behalf of children with disabilities since high school. Taking over Brooklyn Public Library’s Inclusive Services in 1997, she created their gardening program in 1999. Ms. Banks taught inclusion at Pratt Institute from 2013 to 2015 and conducts inclusion trainings across the United States and Canada. She has had many roles in ALA: ASGCLA (Association of Specialized, Government and Cooperative Library Agencies) board member, committee member and chair, program organizer, and co-drafter of resources and tools for serving people with disabilities. Her substantially revised edition of Including Families of Children with Special Needs: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians was published in 2014.
- Table of Contents
- About the Authors
"For me, gardening is the best tool I have to create inclusive library programs. In my urban library, children without disabilities have no advantages over children with disabilities because none of them have gardened before, it’s a level playing (or planting) field."
Read an interview with the authors now!
Roman philosopher Cicero once remarked that “if you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” Today, libraries nationwide are beginning to incorporate gardens into their public services. Libraries in the southwestern US, for instance, are creating drought-tolerant gardens as neighborhood demonstration projects, while elsewhere gardens are being used to promote community engagement and even STEM learning. Citing examples of library gardens around the world that are thriving, this first-ever book on the subject not only demonstrates the many benefits of library gardens but also provides a complete overview of issues applicable to all library types and geographical environments. Featuring a full-color photo insert showcasing several beautiful library gardens, among the topics covered in the book are
- a brief history of libraries and gardens, with an overview of such “demonstration gardens” as medicinal and herbal gardens, native plant gardens, xeriscapes, and gardens as wildlife sanctuaries;
- the use of plants, such as living walls and rooftop gardens, to create ecologically healthy, sustainable environments;
- gardens as learning environments and spaces for storytimes and active play;
- food gardens, seed libraries, sensory gardens, outdoor reading areas, prison garden programs, and many other ways that libraries can engage communities;
- guidance on designing for inclusivity, planning, funding, staffing, recruiting volunteers, and planting and maintenance, complete with advice on determining the best plants to cultivate; and
- ideas on evaluating the effectiveness of library gardens and the program opportunities they offer.
Readers will not only be inspired to create and nurture their own library gardens and programs, they will receive practical advice on how to proceed and sustain them.
Chapter 1 A Brief History of Libraries and Gardens
Chapter 2 Demonstration Gardens in Libraries
Chapter 3 Learning in Library Gardens
Chapter 4 Community Engagement
Chapter 5 Library Garden Design
Chapter 6 Planning and Managing the Library Garden
Chapter 7 Sustaining the Garden through Funding, Partnerships, and Volunteers
Chapter 8 Evaluating Garden Programs
- Appendix A A Tour of All the Gardens Cited in This Book
- Appendix B Sample Community Garden Rules, Regulations, and Gardener Agreements
- Appendix C Sample Volunteer Gardener Application
- Appendix D Sample Evaluation Report