A busload of kids from a local elementary school stopped by the library this morning for a tour. There were 22 kids in grades 1 and 3 and they were surprisingly quiet. Questions from these young patrons included “Who sits at this desk?” “Where are the Dr. Seuss books?” and the most popular by far: “When is snack time?” I was thankful that I could answer two out of the three.
After showing them where we keep picture books and chapter books, I read two stories: Librarian on the Roof! A True Story by M.G. King and Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don’t) by Barbara Bottner. The first story is about a librarian who had a radical idea for a fundraiser: she refused to come down from the library’s roof until $20,000 had been raised to furnish the children’s department. The book was longer than the ones I’m used to reading, but then again these are first and third graders, so they were up for a longer story. To keep them engaged, I asked questions throughout the book, asking them to predict what might happen next. This worked, for the most part, but it was a challenge to keep such a large group focused for the entire story.
The second book is my go-to book for library tours. Miss Brooks Loves Books (and I don’t) is about a first grader who hasn’t fallen in love with a book yet. She can’t understand why her librarian is so obsessed with books (she even dresses up like the characters!) until she finally finds one she connects with. This is a quick read and it reinforces that there is a special book out there for everyone.
The kids got library cards and picked out a couple of books to take home. It’s always fun to start the day by introducing kids to the library!