Editor’s Note: the Library’s statements in this article were incorrectly attributed to Kathy Gaynor; they were by librarian Wendy Lehar, who with Penny Haggarty was responsible for creating this new library collection.
There are times when stress gets to all of us. Finishing that paper? Writing exams? Digging your car out of the snow so you can rush off to holiday preparations? Whatever the causes of stress or anxiety, reading is a pleasure that can help students, faculty and staff alike take a mental break, relax, and recharge.
Curl up with a good book. The Library has just introduced a new leisure reading collection called TRU Reads. Located in the House of Learning Library on the third floor, the collection features popular novels and non-fiction titles that you can check out for up to four weeks. Picking up a biography or best-seller—whether you take a quick break from studying or pack it for holiday travel—is a stress management technique that will pull your mind away from your worries and leave you refreshed.
“Reading a book purely for interest’s sake may also help your academic reading skills,” says librarian Wendy Lehar. Research indicates that students who read for fun improve their comprehension and writing skills, become more articulate and think more critically. Students of English as a second language will benefit from increased vocabulary and grammar skills. “The Library believes pleasure reading is an important part of lifelong learning.”
Since starting the law program in September, Dennis Rose hasn’t had much time for leisure reading. He hopes to crack the cover of some fiction when he gets home to Edmonton during the winter break. “Reading fiction does totally get your mind off things and let’s you go somewhere else for awhile.” A fan of George R.R. Martin, he’s finished the Game of Thrones series and knows it’s a long wait for the sixth installment, The Winds of Winter in 2015.
The TRU Reads Leisure Collection has lots to choose from including popular titles in mystery, thrillers, romance, and science fiction. Look for “Leisure Collection” in the online catalogue, or visit the third floor of House of Learning.
On the first floor of HOL, the Library is offering other ways to take a break during the exam period, with the Stress-Free Zone. Play board games or Lego, colour, find Waldo, or enjoy a healthy snack. New to this third rendition of the Stress-Free Zone are Therapy Thursdays: For the Love of Dogs. The TRU Wellness Centre has brought the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dogs to campus several times this fall in Student Street, and they’re visiting with students at the House of Learning on Thursdays during the exam period.