Friday, November 30, 2007

37 posts in 30 days

I did it! I made it through NaBloPoMo, with posts to spare. I am so proud of myself for sticking with it.

And now for something completely different.

I spent an hour this morning at Ella's school helping the librarian and two other volunteers set up for the Scholastic Book Fair, and it brought back some wonderful memories of 3rd grade - actually, this is pretty much the only good memory from that year of school - when, for the first time, I went to a school that had a book fair.

We had just moved to Sarasota, Florida from Albany, New York, by way of Westfield, Massachussetts, where we lived for 18 months. I was a bit lost in my new school and missing my friends and family up north pretty badly. I didn't like the school I was in or the teacher I had. I had gone to a combination of private and Montessori-like schools up north, and I didn't deal well with the new public school I attended in Florida for one year before moving on to magical Pine View (Which at that time was a ramshackle collection of portable classrooms, with no cafeteria or gymnasium. We called it Camp Pine View.).

Anyway, fairly soon after I started there, the school had a book fair, and I just loved it. I love books, pure and simple, so getting to shop for books at school and put together a wish list for my parents was such a treat. I don't remember what books I picked out, but I do remember the one my mom bought for me - Strawberry Girl by Lois Lensky. It was an appropriate book for me because it was about a little girl living in the pine scrub area of Central Florida on her family's strawberry farm. Florida was such an alien place to me and reading about it helped me to adjust. The little girl played in palmetto bushes, just like we had behind our house. And she dug in the sandy soil just like I did when playing outside. That book made a new and scary place seem less scary.

Behold the power of literature!

So this morning I looked around at the books being set out and wondered which books Ella would pick. She's been banned from including anything related to Pokemon and High School Musical on her wish list. I would love for Ella to find that one book that reaches her the way Strawberry Girl did me. I'm going back in next week to volunteer. I'll take some time then to look more closely at the books to see if I can pick a magical book for her.


Family Adventure said...

In third grade, Christopher found just such a book - and I am ever so grateful. He is now reading Lord of the Rings - in grade 5. Pretty sophisticated for his age - but is all thanks to that magical book.

I'm still looking for Benjamin's magical book.

I hope you find one for Ella. One that will open her eyes to the wonders of literature.


Suburban Correspondent said...

So many possibilities! Little House books, Narnia books (I read my first one at age 9), Betsy-Tacy books - I enjoyed nothing so much as reliving all these wonderful books through my daughter. Of course, now she hates me, but I still read the books.

And Scholastic books make me sick - literally. One year I was in charge of the Scholastic order for my homeschool group, and the books arrived the week I began having morning sickness with my 5th. I actually had to give up the job, because every time I tried to look at one of those shiny, smooth covers, I'd want to throw up. Sigh.

hokgardner said...

Ella is fully in the thrall of the Harry Potter books, which she is reading with her daddy, a chapter at a time. And she's reading Ella Enchanted on her own. We've read lots of the Roald Dahl books with her, and she has the Little House books. But we haven't found that ONE book for her yet.

Or maybe the Harry Potter books are her books. They really inspired her to start reading chapter books once she unlocked the secret to being able to read.