Events

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

That Moment When A Children's Librarian Knows...

The past couple of weeks have been filled with nostalgia. That happens when a librarian looks around and witness incredible changes in our library and technology. It is absolutely stunning at times to remember where we have been and where we are going. The technology that we have today will seem like child's play in fire years or so. Among all the changes some things will never change. The power of a story. The absolute pure joy and thrill to share that story with young ones. Story time programs are the first library doors that are opened to children. It's an amazing task for a good librarian to introduce children to the library world and help them grow to love everything about the library. There are moments in a story time when the children's librarians know that the half hour will be a good one or a bad one. The veterans in the field know the tell tale signs of a child who does not want anything to do with story time, the other children or the library. They cling to mom or dad. They cry. They will do anything possible to not participate. Those times can be difficult. Sometimes, the only option it seems is to have the child leave. That's the very last resort. The best thing to do is to cut the story time short a bit and allow the children time to explore the library with their parents. They may end up finding a favorite corner to hare books together. However, when the magical moment happens, and all eyes are glued to the book that is being shared, there is no amount of technology that can take the place of the one on one experience. From the moment the story begins to the very last page, its as if everything has stopped. the world outside the children's room keeps bustling about. The children and the librarian on the other hand have "virtually" left the building. Entering another world where words sweep them in and pictures absorbs the group into their world. It seems as if nothing can penetrate this shard world. Not even a video game, which seems almost impossible these days. Every children's librarian seeks and craves for this moment. It is an absolute joy. It's one the one joy that should never be taken out of the library. Not even for budget cuts. Why share this idea of the perfect moment in story time? Perhaps because this world is so filled with noise, distractions and static that it is good to reflect on what the library does best for the young ones. A quiet place to escape and visit another world with friends. The imagination is so much better than video games. Perhaps we should as library professionals continue to reinforce that in our every day encounters with patrons of all ages.
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