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Friday, November 6, 2015

JUMPING OFF LIBRARY SHELVES- selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins


I work at a terrific school. A great place where kids are known and honored for their talents. We have art and music and PE. We have caring mental health specialists who help us take care of kids' hearts and families needs.

But we don't have a librarian.

Our library is staffed by a para and a group of volunteer parents.

And I hate it.

There's no one who can say, "You liked ** (RAIN REIGN, PERCY JACKSON, books about snakes), so you'll love this one.
Kids can't get a book any time they need/want to.
Teachers can't find what the special books they need.

Schools who want to grow readers need a librarian.

That's my bottom line.

Maybe that's why I loved Lee Bennett Hopkin's newest book, JUMPING OFF LIBRARY SHELVES. Fifteen poems that celebrate libraries and books and words. Some of the finest children's poets- Amy Ludwig Vanderwater, J. Patrick Lewis, Jane Yolen, Nikki Grimes, Joan Bransfield Graham, Kristine O'Connell George, Rebecca Kai Dotlich-- and lots of others. Beautiful watercolor illustrations. A CYBILS nominee.

Here's one of my favorites.


Storyteller
(for Augusta Baker)

As she speaks
words
leap from pages--

there are
friends like
frog and toad--

I walk
down a
yellow brick road.

Worlds of paper
disappear--

only
Miss Augusta
and I
are here
in a room
filled with magic
story
rhyme.

And as her voice
reaches
the highest
rafter--

I believe in

once-upon-a-time,

I believe in

happily ever after.

Lee Bennett Hopkins

Read more great poetry at Write. Sketch. Repeat.

7 comments:

Linda Baie said...

You're right, someone who knows the students and the books is one of the important people in schools. This book is a treasure, agreed, Carol. Thanks for sharing.

jama said...

It should be illegal not to have a school librarian. Sorry to hear that.

Loved this book too!

Michelle Heidenrich Barnes said...

I feel for (and agree with) your need, Carol. Thank goodness for those volunteer parents, though. Such a beautiful poem and anthology as a whole! I mention it in my post today too.

Tabatha said...

How distressing that the library gets short shrift! You can't just leave out an important part of the school.
I especially like "Worlds of paper/disappear"

Mary Lee said...

Three cheers for school librarians!

Bridget Magee said...

Being a former school librarian I am SO excited about this book. I just requested my branch library buy it. Thanks for putting the spotlight on it, Carol. =)

Sally Murphy said...

I'm with you - a school without a librarian is a travesty. The book, though, sounds wodnerful, and I love the poem!