Oct 1, 2013

Things Students Ask Librarians

These are the favorite things I hear in the library: (and by favorite I mean not favorite)

"Do you have any books on ______________?"  (fill in the blank)

*this is normally asked when a kid is deperately trying to finish a project.  I understand they don't want to look it up in our online catalog themselves.  I know they want me to find it for them, but until they show me they tried I am not getting up to find it for you.  Its' called reSEARCH!

"Where are your realistic fiction books?"  (or historical, or romance, etc...)

*for some reason our teachers are in a big push to have them read different genres. This is just fine if teachers understood genres.  I seriously had a teacher tell her students there were two genres: non-fiction and fiction.  It made my heart hurt a bit.  So we have taken to teaching our teachers about different genres, but then we have kids come in and ask where certain genres are.  Again, I realize they just want me to find a book, but we are not set up like a bookstore.  All genres are mixed together!

"Can you find me a really good book?"

*I actually love this question, or at least when kids ask for help finding a good book  I know of lots and lots of good books!  But they leave it so open ended it always makes me laugh.  If it's a boy, sometimes I take him over and show him The Summer I Turned Pretty because that is a really good book.  Then we laugh and laugh as I point out he needs to be more specific. 

"I forgot to cite a book for my report.  I think it had a blue cover with a picture of a man on it."

*least favorite question of all.  We teach and teach them to write down all citation info (or at least the title) of a book before they even start taking notes, then take notes under the citation information.  But there are still some that don't.  This question bothers me the most because I cannot help them if they don't at least have a title.

But my favorite, favorite thing is when they don't say anything at all.  They just come up to my desk with a book in their hands.  If they come up to me like that I assume they want to check out the book.  This is not always the case.  Often they are trying to turn the book in, but my desk is not the book return.  I always stress to sixth graders during orientation to talk to me.  Tell me what you want or ask me a question, do not just stand there looking at me!


  1. 2 genres? Madness. Great post.

  2. I love the "can you find me a really good book" question. I'd get that one almost more often from adults than kids. My follow up questions are always "What books do YOU think have been really good?" and "What kind of book are you in the mood to read?" and then go from there. I love matching the RIGHT good book to the right reader.