Over the years she collected children's books. Her grandchildren have outgrown the titles (and they use eReaders!), but she didn't want to just toss the books aside.
How could I? These are Tommy DePaola ... oh, Streganona!
She knew that through the Reading Tub® we get books to readers, so that is why she called me.
When I went to look at the books, I learned the proverbial "rest of the story" about why she had collected and saved so many children's books. It seems that many years ago, she tutored ESL students. Twice a year each child would receive a book. One year, after her student received their second book, the child declared "now I have two books." The student was so proud. She was in shock.
This exchange motivated my neighbor to collect books - mostly gently used titles - so that she could share them with a reader in need. Even after she stopped tutoring, she kept her treasures, hoping one day that they would find an excited reader. I promised her I would get them in the right hands.
For those of us surrounded by books for as long as we can remember, the story seems unfathomable. How can it be that a child reaches school without a book to call their own? Unfortunately, it's true. So many of us have heard stories similar to this one.
It is what motivates us to do what we can to make a difference: as teachers, as mentors, as citizens. February 14, 2013 marks International Book Giving Day. The goal is to connect a child with a book to call their own. Some suggestions from the website ...
- Give a book to a friend or relative. It can be new, used, or borrowed.
- Leave a book in a waiting room or lobby. Deposit the book overtly or covertly in the waiting room of your choice.
- Collect the books your child has outgrown and deliver them - together - to a shelter, school, or a local organization getting books to kids.