HAHS Library offers many resources


Morgan Lutz, Pinnacle Student Life Editor

Almost every child from the ages of five to 18 has access to a library, whether that be in a school or their town library. Hamburg has both a library at all of its schools and a town library. The library at Hamburg is a well-thought-out space and one of my personal favorite rooms in the school. The library has rows and rows of bookshelves, comfortable seating, natural lighting, and many other resources for students.

     There are an estimated 15,000 books in the library, and the school also receives 5–10 new books a month that are displayed on the cart right inside the doors to the library. If there are any books that the library does not have that a student wants, students are able to request the books, and the librarian, Mrs. McCarthy, will be able to get the book through Inter Library Loans, which allows her to borrow another book from any library across the state of Pennsylvania.

     All of the books in the library are sorted using the Dewey decimal system. There are many different types of books in the non-fiction section, ranging from true crime, music, and World War II to cookbooks. These books are sorted by categories, whereas the fiction books are sorted by the author’s last name. The library also offers graphic novels and Spanish versions of some books. The spines of the Spanish books are marked with a red and yellow stickers. The graphic novels are marked with red stickers that include a speech bubble and biographies are marked with blue stickers.

     The library also offers many other resources for students other than just books. Hamburg has a digital magazine subscription called Flipster that allows students access to many different popular magazines, including Time and Vogue.

     There are also battery-powered audiobooks called Playaways. Students do not need service or a wifi connection to listen to these audiobooks. The school has many different books available on the Playaways. Visit the library and ask Mrs. McCarthy to view the different options available!

     Another amazing resource that the library offers to students is their research databases, JStor and ProQuest. The databases allow students to do any research they need without having to worry about making sure their sources are valid and can be trusted. There are many different helpful features to these databases, such as having the article read at different speeds and having the ability to save an article directly to their Google Drive.

     When the library was refurnished, the comfort and needs of students were most important with two years of research and trips to different stores and markets to try and find the perfect furniture. Now the library features many different seating options, including high and low tables, comfy chairs, and even brody chairs. Brody chairs have a built-in desk and an acrylic divider wrapped around the chair for anyone who wants to sit on their own. All of the furniture is on wheels, so it is easy to move around and change the library as needed. The room is also decorated with student art and has a skylight in the ceiling for a lot of natural lighting. Any materials or supplies that students need can be found in the library. Mrs. McCarthy is known for “having everything.”

     The library is also used for many different events and meetings. The World Cup food event and Java Jam were two recent school events held in the library. Classes are also brought in for lessons, and meetings between college associates and students are often held in the library.

     Mrs. McCarthy is the school librarian. She has been the librarian since 2015 and had 20 years of previous experience in libraries before she took over the library. She also has a master’s in library science. Mrs. McCarthy is also the publications teacher, HEP teacher, senior class advisor, leads Student Council, and runs the Leo Club.