Tuesday, January 10, 2006

sanctity of books

I got myself this little job, purely on a volunteer basis which is kind of ludicrous considering how little time I have on my hands, but I like it nonetheless. Every Tuesday mornings, after dropping off the kids at preschool, I go to big sis' school and become the librarian for that morning. In these days of cutbacks, there is no longer a dedicated librarian in the school like when we grew up. The one who would make us shush, who would give us the evil eye if we messed up the order of her books, who would neatly stamp the return date on the back of the book we took out and I so remember pulling out the card in the back of books to see who read it before us. Now its all automated and scanned.

It's mindless work really but it fulfills my sense of order and I get to see what kids in primary school read. I put books back on shelves, reorganize shelves, put collections together. For 2 hours I work alone and have time to think about life stuff or just not think at all. Its ungrateful work though cuz it always needs to be redone and it seems that kids don't view books with the reverance they deserve. They toss them around, mess up shelves, leave trash lying around. I've been talking to the principal about getting kids involved in keeping them all in order and learning how they are organized. Its real basic Dewey system here. Its mostly all story books now too as any type of research is mostly all done via internet. Long gone are the days of Encyclopedias and Encyclopedia salespersons who would go from door to door. The other day I was showing big sis my very own Encyclopedias and she wasn't too impressed with them and was shocked at how "long" it took to look things up . I had 3: one for sciences, one for geography and history and one for general stuff. I remember reading them as a child from cover to cover. They were sacred to me.


BeachMama said...

You are reminding me of the library at my public school. I loved it! Actually we had two, one for the under grade 3's and it was just a bunch of books on shelves in a corner. But, when you graduated to grade 4 you got to go to the "research" library! It was stacked to the ceiling with books and had chairs and tables to read and do your research. Oh how I loved that library. I even made one at home, I loved it so much. Now I choose my books online, the librarians pick them and I pick them up. How fast is that?

Enjoy, books are awesome,

DaniGirl said...

What a cool job! Good for you for volunteering - I'd love to do something like that.

The public library in Barrhaven has a wonderful children's section, and I've been trying to instill in my boys the sense of wonder the library gave me as a child. So far, so good - the other day when I asked Tristan what he'd like to do, he said either visiting Toys R Us or the library would be fun.

nancy said...

I would LOVE to be a librarian!! But since going back to school and likely no one ever hiring ever again...perhaps going that route is what I can do too - one day...but maybe I'll pick the adult library so I can sneak some grown up reading??