Every school year, lower school students at PA look forward to browsing for a good read at the book fair. With the transition to distance learning, this well-loved event also had to move online. Mrs. Commers and the LS library team have worked hard to make this occasion special in new and creative ways.
The Virtual Book Fair began on Wednesday, May 13th, and will continue through tomorrow, May 20th. Students received a link in their email, which is based on their respective grade level for the upcoming school year. From there, students can select their books via a Google order form. Parents can decide whether they want to pick up the books at school or opt for home delivery.
Commers shared the mission of the Book Fair, “I like to think we are sharing the best of the best with our students. The book fair introduces them to recent award winners, books that encourage virtues we have shared all year long, and books that bring our faith to life”.
The Ocean- Exploring our Blue Planet, by Miranda Krestovnikoff, tops the list as one of Commers’ personal favorites in this year’s selection. She commented, “Not only is it beautifully illustrated, but it is loaded with fascinating facts sure to satisfy the curious!”
Books are carefully selected to follow PA’s message of Faith, Knowledge, and Virtue. Mrs. Heidi Happe, the Library Assistant, commented on Commers’ selection process, “She will happily listen to requests from her student’s, adding to a popular series and looking for books that have a beautiful lesson. She is always mindful that new additions tie in with PA’s curriculum”.
By offering a broad selection of works, the book fair encourages students to pursue reading, whatever their personal interests. The titles all have messages which positively shape their reading experience. The Rabbit Who Listened by Cori Doerrfeld, for example, displays important qualities of empathy and kindness. The One and Only Bob by K.A. Applegate teaches about loyalty, forgiveness, and trust.
Happe also shared her favorite part of the Book Fair, “The best part, my favorite part, is seeing the little kiddos enter the Library and the look on their faces when they see the Library completely transformed into a “mini” Barnes and Noble!”
Students also received their summer reading lists as part of the virtual fair. Teachers request that students read certain books in preparation for their upcoming school year. Henry Hilberg, a rising fourth-grader, chose The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. Hilberg also selected The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo and Gentle Ben by Walt Morey in addition to his assigned summer reading book.
Commers concluded with her thoughts on the books students select for the summer, “ I imagine students finding a shady spot under a tree with a big glass of ice cold lemonade and a good book, or on a dock with their feet dangling in the water…a good book in their lap. I want reading to be fun and relaxing”.