Librarians Help! – Book! Book! Book!

It’s been a couple weeks since I did my last Librarians Help! feature. I chose the title because of my very favorite incident in the library this week.

A mother was walking into the library with her toddler son in tow. Now, from a toddler’s eye level, there’s not a whole lot going on at the entrance to the library. The shelves aren’t facing out, and mostly what he’d see are desks. But we do have two book displays just before you get to the information desk, and one of those I had just stocked with children’s nonfiction, trying to put the simplest books on the lowest level.

I didn’t notice the mother until she passed the children’s books display on her way to the nonfiction. I heard, “Book! Book! Book!” Mom had already passed them on her way to the nonfiction, but the son was holding back, pointing happily at the books on the display. I knew there was a family that used the library often and a little boy who already knew that books are objects of delight.

I don’t have a picture of that incident, but thought this was a good excuse to insert a picture of my Dad reading to my son, many years ago. What’s better than helping make books objects of delight?

In these last two weeks, I got to help people in lots of ways:

— Made English tutoring appointments
— Booked meeting rooms
— Helped a little boy visiting the Virginia Room with his Grandma find his home on a map
— Showed a man the website telling about the Sherwood collection so he could match the items in the display case up with his memories
— Put creative books about Math on display
— Helped people with e-books

And I helped people find lots and lots of books:

— Books on Liberal Arts Math
— Easy readers for a preschooler
— Fairy tales
— Science books for a 1st grader
The Pioneer Woman Cooks
— Books about Kookaburras
— Books about Venice
Brunetti’s Cookbook
Tunnels
— Books about Chinese dragons
Into the Wild
The Anglo-Saxons
— Specific issues of Science Magazine
Magic Tree House books
— Books about the history of oil usage
— Books and resources for a retiree wanting to become a government contractor
— Video and books about Vermeer
A Little Princess
— Books on starting in real estate
— Books on Windows 7
— Books on basic math
— Books on fractions for a Kindergarten class

Here are a couple books on fractions I pointed out to that Kindergarten teacher that she didn’t already know about:

The Doorbell Rang, by Pat Hutchins (not specifically about fractions, but a good tie-in)
Piece = Part = Portion, by Scott Gifford

I really wish I had found Eating Fractions, by Bruce McMillan.

She did have a list of several books, we found several on the shelf, and I showed her those ones I knew about. Those kids are in for a treat!

One more thing I want to do with this Librarians Help! series is provide a link about other librarians helping.

This link provides statistics from Snapshot Virginia Day, when we counted the basic ways the Fairfax County Library helped people.

For example, more than 16,000 people visited our branches that day. Librarians answered more than 1,700 reference questions. We offered 13 programs or classes that day that were attended by 385 people. What’s more, that was a Saturday, when our hours aren’t as long as other days and our staffing is not as good.

Spread the word: Librarians Help!

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