Previous by DateNext by Date Date Index
Previous by ThreadNext by Thread Thread Index
LM_NET Archive

Thank you for sharing your touching stories.  Here is the compilation!


Here's a story I feel is very touching and encouraging to me as a first 
time media specialist in an elementary school.

I had a special Education K-1 class come to the media center for a 45 
minute session for the second time at the beginning of the year.  As they 
came in they were very noisy and very active.  I had them quiet down and 
sit down in my story time area.  Needless to say bodies were rocking, heads 
bobbing and bodies laying out on the floor.  I pulled out my large Clifford 
puppet dog and spoke these words "Clifford is ready to read to you a story 
and ask you some questions.  Are you ready for me?"

It was like an instant alert button.  Everyone focused and came to 
attention.  I read them the story Clifford's First Autumn.  They loved each 
minute of it, paid close attention to the story and pictures and responded 
positively to the questions from the story.  Each student then had the 
opportunity to hug the puppet.  Then I said, "Now each week when you come 
in, there will be a new guest puppet waiting to meet you and read you a 
special story."

Now when they come to the library, I do not have to get them to settle down 
for the first ten minutes.  They cannot wait to see who the guest puppet 
will be.

The encouraging part of this story is that when they see me out in the 
hallways they all hug me and tell people as they pass by that I am their 
library reading teacher and blow me kisses.

A few years ago, I had decided to start an elementary lunchtime book club
where students could bring a sack lunch to the library during their
lunch/recess time for a whole week.  I would choose a book I could finish
in a week and simply read it aloud--nothing at all fancy!  The first time I
offered it, I was nervous that no one would come since they would have to
give up their recess time--or it would be all girls!  But I had a pretty
good turnout after all of both boys and girls.  On the last day, a Friday,
we finished the book and the kids began picking up their trash and leaving
for the classroom.  A couple girls gave me a hug and said "Thanks, Mrs.
Carlson."  But the boys just shuffled out without comment.  Later that
afternoon, however, it was very busy and I was helping a student at a
computer when I noticed out of the corner of my eye that someone was
lingering by my elbow.  I assumed it was just someone waiting their turn
for assistance.  When I finished with the student I was helping, I turned
and saw that the student waiting for me was one of my 5th grade boys from
the lunchtime book club.  He was looking a little sheepish, but when I
said, "Matt, what can I do for you?" he replied, "Mrs. Carlson, would you
like me to play a song for you on my recorder as a way of saying 'thank
you' for Books Between the Bites?" And he whipped out his recorder from
music class and played 'Ode to Joy' for me right in the middle of my busy
library!!  It was truly a beautiful moment--and one I'll never ever forget.
Thanks for giving me the chance to share it!

First and best memory - a 5th grader who was a VERY reluctant reader.  In 
March of his 5th grade year he came to the library with a friend, 
introduced me to the student and proceeded to tell the friend that he 
should always ask me what book he should check out for his book 
report.  With a big smile on his face he announced "SHE ALWAYS HELPS ME AND 


One my favorite personal stories about library use making a difference
starts an old column of mine at
It's one I use in
some of my talks too. Not exactly about "achievement", but I still like it.

For many years I was librarian at a junior high. One day after school, two
high school boys - twins - who had been students at my junior high, appeared
at the counter. One brother had been a regular patron while a student there,
the other brother only came when he had to. Now, the second brother was in an
AP class with a year-long project and he didn't know where to begin or how to
find the information. So his brother brought him back to me. All year long,
Alex, periodically appeared after school, sometimes for help with his AP
class, sometimes for other projects such as designing flyers for a club event
or tickets for something else.

Alex graduated from high school and went on to college in Phoenix. One
afternoon I got an email from Alex. His freshman literature class was reading
"The Last of the Mohicans" and he had to make a report on Mohicans and
couldn't find ANYTHING, could I help?

Of course I did.

I received a card from Alex in which he told me that I had changed his opinion
of librarians.

I wrote Corey's Story earlier this year based on a real-life incident and 
it should be in October's edition of Teacher Librarian - haven't received 
my copy yet. It's about Corey who found sanctuary from abusive parents in 
our library.


I was unbelievably shy as a young girl. I would answer a question if asked, 
but if no one spoke to me I didn't say a word.

I remember my elementary school library. I found wonderful things to read - 
those orange Childhood of Famous Americans were some of my favorites. And I 
could read about all sorts of things without asking anyone anything.

Then my mother started taking library classes at the local University. She 
would take me along to the library while she did her work. I discovered the 
University's wonderful collection of children's literature. We visited the 
public library. We visited libraries on our summer vacations - as a matter 
of fact, it was one of the highlights of each trip to seek out the library 
and see what titles of our favorite authors they owned. The town built a 
new school and my mother volunteered to help set up the library. I would be 
attending that school and the librarian took the time to talk to me and 
show me how she was arranging the shelves and organizing the equipment.

I learned many things in those libraries of my childhood. Literacy and 
achievement, of course, and, probably most important, feeling secure in my 
own skin. Some kids could tell a joke and some kids were good at ball 
games. I was good at reading and organization and I now I know an awful lot 
about children's literature.

And when my seven year old was pondering what to be for Halloween she went 
through about 20 ideas - Tinkerbell, a strawberry, a butterfly, an angel, a 
cheerleader..... and she decided on a character from a book, Junie B. 
Jones. I almost couldn't speak. Perhaps she has found security in books, too.


I just enjoyed tremendously one of my "breakfast club" (not really just an 
morning frequent flyer. Grin) kids come in wanting to show me that for
Halloween she was dressed as a  library teacher.  Made my day.  She was
dressed not in dowdy stuff--dressed in a nice black pant and top and she had
her glasses and her name tag that identified her as a librarian.   Yeah!

Toni Buzzeo, MA, MLIS <>
Maine Library Media Specialist of the Year Emerita
Maine Association of School Libraries Board Member
Buxton, ME 04093

Please note: All LM_NET postings are protected by copyright law.
  You can prevent most e-mail filters from deleting LM_NET postings
  by adding LM_NET@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU to your e-mail address book.
To change your LM_NET status, e-mail to:
In the message write EITHER: 1) SIGNOFF LM_NET  2) SET LM_NET NOMAIL
3) SET LM_NET MAIL  4) SET LM_NET DIGEST  * Allow for confirmation.
 * LM_NET Help & Information:
 * LM_NET Archive:
 * EL-Announce with LM_NET Select:
 * LM_NET Supporters:

LM_NET Mailing List Home