Information for Teachers on assignment alerts, class visits, and other services.


The Benicia Public Library shares with teachers the desire to help students succeed.

Please email the Children's Librarian or fill out an Assignment Alert form.

Programs at the Library:

The Library has over 200 programs per year for school-aged children and teens.  Here are some highlights:

  • The After-School Zone is open Monday-Thursday, 3:30 to 5:00, all school year.  It's a safe place for children and teens ages 8-19 to study, play video games, and hang out.  Currently closed due to #COVID-19.
  • We have four monthly book clubs for children and teens, divided as follows: grades 1-3; grades 3-5; grades 6-8; grades 9-12.
  • Our Summer Reading Programs help combat the "summer slide" by rewarding reading and giving away free books.


We go where we're asked, and we're happy to work with you on whatever you need!  Here are some examples:

  • In the 2014-2015 school year, we spoke to 1,456 students at the elementary schools to tell them about great new books and to encourage them to join the Summer Reading Program.
  • Visited 31 classes at BMS, telling 832 students about great new books.
  • In the spring of 2015, we took part in Matthew Turner's Exploratory Wheel, teaching 3rd-graders about the Library and books in six-week sessions.
  • We provided Raising a Reader sets for classrooms at Matthew Turner and Robert Semple, which allowed children to bring home a bag of books each week to share with their families.

Curriculum Support

Many of the Library's books support BUSD's and St. Dominic's curricula.  Here are some specifics about how our collection can support students:

  • We buy books to support the Common Core, including books to support specific standards.  For example, after a request from a teacher at Mary Farmar, we bought extra books that tell stories from different points of view.
  • When teachers contact us about an assignment, we put books aside on a special shelf at the Customer Service Desk.   This allows students to find what they need quickly.
  • Our parent/teacher collection in the Children's Section includes books that help teachers, such as guides to multicultural books or the Common Core.


Teaching Books
Teaching Books for Libraries

Discover materials that deepen connections to the children's and young adult books read throughout your community.  For teachers, librarians, and homeschooling parents.

TeachingBooks is an online book database, assisting teachers, parents, and librarians with finding multimedia resources, lesson plans, and links to extend curriculum in the classroom around books. Tutorials

To access Teaching Books, you will need a Benicia Library Card.

    Project READY: Reimagining Equity & Access for Diverse Youth

    This site hosts a series of free, online professional development modules for school and public youth services librarians, library administrators, and others interested in improving their knowledge about race and racism, racial equity, and culturally sustaining pedagogy. The primary focus of the Project READY curriculum is on improving relationships with, services to, and resources for youth of color and Native youth.

    Class Visits

    We are always pleased to have classes come on a tour of the Benicia Public Library. (The library building is currently closed due to #Covid-19) Tours usually consist of:

    • general information about the library
    • a story or booktalk
    • a tour around the Children’s Section
    • a chance to get a library card or check out books.

    Many of our tours are tailored to meet the needs of a particular class. For example, a class can come to find information about California counties. Each student would receive a list of resources to help them complete a project about California counties, they would be shown where all of the relevant books were shelved, and they would learn how to find useful links on our website. Other class tours have focused on Benicia history, nocturnal animals, and how the library operates.

    To schedule a tour, call Allison Angell at (707) 746-4741.

    If you want your students to receive library cards during the tour, tours must be scheduled at least two weeks in advance. 

    Other Services

    We are happy to help students find books for assignments or to give tours to classes. In addition, we provide the following services on request:

    • booklists about a specific topic, like fiction about the Gold Rush or biographies of famous Californians
    • visits to your classroom, for storytelling or a booktalk

    Tips about assignments for teachers to help students use the Library most effectively:

    What librarians can do:

    Inform you of what resources the library offers. We may have more resources than you imagine -- or we may have fewer. It’s best to check before the assignment is given.  Call the library, or check it yourself by using the SPLASH catalog.

    Reserve assignment materials for your students. If we have limited resources, we can reserve them for in-library use, ensuring access for all.

    Assist students and teachers in using the library. We are always happy to help, and can be more helpful if we have prepared in advance. In addition to the books we can provide, we can show students web sites that will assist them with specific assignments.

    Suggest alternate resources. Perhaps the library does not have every title on your required reading list, but working together we can come up with acceptable alternatives.

    What teachers can do:

    Notify the library of assignments in advance. This will allow librarians to check resources and prepare for the necessary number of students. Fill out an assignment alert online.  The Children’s Services Librarian or the Teen Services Librarian will process your request.

    Discuss research methods and possible sources with students. Let them know where you want them to start looking for information, but be sure to tell them what other resources are acceptable.

    Be flexible in assigning subjects and with requirements for sources. If you assign a very specific topic, resource, or number of pages, please check to ensure availability. Your flexibility allows more students to succeed at their research.

    Be aware of your students’ abilities and skills and be realistic about what you expect them to accomplish.

    Give clear expectations for the assignment to students and librarians. Try to provide a written copy of the assignment to everyone concerned.

    Encourage students to ask for help from library staff. We are here to help!

    Thank you for working together with us to make your students’ library experiences successful.

    For details about any of the above, call Allison Angell at (707) 746-4741 or e-mail aangell@ci.benicia.ca.us .