MOVING AND LEARNING IN NORTH CAROLINA

Charles H. Stone Memorial Library, Pilot Mountain, North Carolina, U.S.A.

The Charles H. Stone Memorial Library has supported healthy lifestyles through many programs since 2006, including StoryWalks(R), treasure hunts, a painted sidewalk obstacle course, Yoga, Qi Gong, a community garden, mental health first aid, line dancing, and Matter of Balance training.

In April, 2021, the library is working to tie together literacy and movement with a U.S. National Poetry Month initiative. Thelibrary will offer a wide range of poetry activities throughout the month of April, including a Poetry in Motion Yoga program and a StoryWalk of Poetree by Shauna LaVoy Reynolds.

Society often tells us that athletes don’t read, and readers aren’t active. The library wants to change that perception by stimulating both mind and body.

Impacts of this programming includes seeing families enjoying time together. These programs create a positive perception of exercise for people who have had negative experiences with exercise in the past. This programming helps to foster an “I can” mindset. The gym is an intimidating place for people who have never exercised before, but the library has a less competitive atmosphere, allowing people to try something new.

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Lessons learned: Libraries can expose people to new healthy habits in a safe, trusted environment.

Try different things to find out what resonates with your community.

Look to combining reading and movement with StoryWalk(R) programming, and by adding movement components to celebrations of special events like National Poetry Month.

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