My school held its winter concerts all on the same evening this month before we left for break. I sat in the "gymnatorium" being entertained by my students, and I could not help but be impressed with the opportunities our students are provided with. The drama club and chorus were first, and they integrated their performances. The students in the drama club performed skits introducing the songs performed by the school chorus. Next, the orchestra played. One of their numbers included the principal reading "The Night Before Christmas" with the orchestra playing sound effects as he read. The band performed last, and as usual, they were wonderful. So impressive! All these performance opportunities for students in grades six through eight. I enjoyed the programs, maybe a little too much. Bursting with pride, I sat up front with the camera wielding parents and grandparents. The teachers tend to sit or stand in the back, but I always want a front row seat. I had a huge smile on my face as I sat tapping my foot to the music and laughing at the funny parts. I was really into it, bordering on too into it, when the woman sitting beside me turned and said, "Which one is yours?" I said proudly, "All of them!" Smiling, she replied, "Oh! What do you teach?" Rather than my usual lengthy reply I simply smiled and said, "I'm the librarian!"
since it is not nice to talk during performances.
I think it is great that public schools provide such rich and varied opportunities for students. Academics, sports, arts, and activities such as Beta Club, Student Government, Battle of the Brains Academic Quiz Team, the school news program and more. This is a testament to what our public schools have to offer. The school library completes this package with a helpful library staff, computer labs, book clubs, the library helper program, reading promotions, before and after school hours and more. There is something for everyone. Schools with a library run by a certified librarian simply have more to offer their students. I have heard people say that if it were not for the sports program, some students would not stay in school. The same is true for the library program.
In the age of cruel budget cuts and furloughs many say, "cut band, cut football, cut chorus, cut the library". Since there are no "library concerts" or "library games" to fill the school's parking lot and bleachers, librarians must fiercely publicize all the good that we do and all the needs that we meet. We must show what we have to offer. Who do we teach? The answer is: all of them, even the teachers and sometimes the parents. It makes me proud to be able to say that.