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Saturday, August 03, 2013

A Job Crossover(From My Other Blog)

First posted on my other blog, Sue Bursztynski's Page.

I'm a teacher-librarian, part of a dying species since some idiot in the government some years ago decided that state school principals should have the power to decide what to do with the school budget and all it gave them was the power to decide where to make cuts. Don't get me started on the unforgivable nature of turning a public service into a business!

But sometimes, even now, I get a thrill.

My book clubbers have the chance to provide reader responses to manuscripts for Allen and Unwin. This is something I do wearing my library hat. One manuscript was returned unread by a student for whom it had seemed a good idea at the time, something her friends were doing(they all read theirs). It was the first time this has happened on my watch and I felt bad about it. I won't name the author here, for confidentiality reasons, but it's someone well-known and wonderful, who wrote the only class novel my Year 11 class never complained about having to read.

However, my class is doing Literature Circles(a sort of Book Club for the classroom) with another class at the moment and one group had finished reading a book by this author. They had LOVED it, though not the ending(Later I may see if I can arrange an interview with this author and they can ask him themselves about the ending).

What to do with them while the rest of the class finishes? I had an idea. As a test run, I printed off copies of the first three chapters of the neglected manuscript for them - I will do more if they want it -  and asked if they'd be interested in reading a book by this author that isn't yet published. Would they? Is the Pope a Catholic?

This week, they not only read some more, they broke out the Literature Circles roles and began to discuss it!

How cool is that, eh? My role as a teacher librarian crossing over with my role as a classroom teacher and a bunch of kids doing something they found exciting.

I nearly cried for joy.

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