It starts with a survey. What do you like reading? Who’s your favorite author? What’s your favorite book? What books have you really loved which your teachers have read aloud? Are there any books or authors you’d like to learn more about?
For seven years, I’ve volunteered a few hours a week at our neighborhood school. My son’s time in first grade coincided with some schedule changes at work, so I could go in to help out a bit. Two jobs and seven years later, my son’s in middle school, and I’m still hanging out in the elementary library and in 3rd and 5th grade. In the library and 3rd grade, I just do whatever I can help with on the days I drop in, but in 5th grade I’ll be the book lady again.
Every week I take in a bookmark and a stack of books that make up the list on it. Sometimes the theme might be tied to the central idea they’re working on – civil rights, the environment — and sometimes it might be a genre – mysteries, humor, sports. I include books in their school library as well as the public library system, because sometimes their collections are a little different. We talk for 10 or 15 minutes after lunch and then I read with kids or help them work on projects. Sometimes I find myself gushing on about something new that I’ve found, but just as often, they tell me about the books they love. For someone who likes talking books, it’s a dream gig.
We’ve got a lot of fun ahead of us this year. New books to discover, authors to talk about, things that make us laugh or cry, books we’ve loved, and more! Book Lady is ready to go!
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