Book fair raises money for library

Karmela Whiteside

The Sevier Middle book fair is where students go to get their favorite books, posters and supplies. As it turns out, there’s a lot going on behind the scenes to make the book fair happen.

Michelle Loudermilk is the head librarian. She organizes the book fair each school year.

¨The book fair is a library fundraiser that we do each school year,” Loudermilk said. “It has two main goals. One is to make money to purchase some books for classrooms and the library. The second goal is to give students the opportunity to purchase a new book from the fair to promote reading.¨

The book fair has tons of fun things for sale, like the newest books and posters, pencils, pens, bookmarks, erasers and pointers. Every fun item for school possible is available at the book fair. Most students have a favorite part of the book fair.

“It was very organized,” seventh grade student Emma Anthony said. “I liked this because I could find stuff more easily.”

Zoe Niederwemmer, another seventh grade student, enjoyed the selection at the book fair.

“They had all the latest books,” she said. “I liked it because I didn’t want to get any books I’ve already read.”

Even Loudermilk has a favorite part of the book fair. ¨It fun to see students picking out books that interest them,” Loudermilk said. “Also, it is exciting to see students get several books to use for summer reading. ¨

Summer reading has students pick a book and write an essay for extra credit, which is something they can do during their free time during the summer. Like every other school event, the book fair takes planning and effort.

¨We usually take the Friday afternoon prior to book fair week to do the setup,” Loudermilk said. “It usually takes a couple hours to unpack and arrange the tables.¨

The librarians stay for hours on Friday before the book fair starts and set up the tables and lay out the books. How does the school choose which books to get? How are they delivered, and how does the book fair actually work?

Many students may have seen all of the “Scholastic” boxes in the library windows when it is time for the book fair.

¨The book fair is planned completely by the book company Scholastic,” she said. “They select the books sent and deliver and pick up the books.”

Students probably wonder what the school does with the money it raises from the school book fair.

¨We use the funds made from the book fair to buy books for ELA classrooms and the library,” Loudermilk said.

All the money raised from the book fair goes back into John Sevier Middle School and into all of the literacy classrooms.

Like any other school librarian, Loudermilk is always looking for ways to improve the library.

¨I would say returning your library books in good condition [is key],” she said. “A lot of expense that we have is replacing books that get damaged.¨

Students should make sure, even if they are returning their books on time, that they are in good condition. They should not eat around the book while reading it or leave it on the floor of a car for it to get stepped all over.

Loudermilk is glad that the book fair was a big success again this school year.

¨Thanks for visiting the book fair and supporting your library,” she said.

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