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Tuesday
Nov182008

Book Fair or Toy Fair?

Benefits of Hosting
Hosting a Fair is the best way to support your school’s reading efforts. Students, parents, and teachers love Book Fairs for a number of reasons, including:

  • A Book Fair connects kids to the books they want to read.
  • They feature a terrific assortment of books, hand-selected by book experts.
  • Book Fairs help build school, classroom, and home libraries.
  • They generate community involvement.
  • A Fair is one of the easiest ways to raise funds for the school. (Scholastic website.)

The parent-teacher organization at the LWW's school hosts a book fair during its P/T conferences each fall and spring. The attractive displays are bright and inviting.  The goals of the event are fantastic -  to encourage personal ownership of books and raise a little money for classrooms and the library. As an indulgent grandfather, it is all I can do to keep my checkbook in my pocket...

Here are a few shots of the offerings...

 

 

Notice anything unusual about this "book" fair? Where are the books in these shots?

OK, I'll admit I was somewhat selective in my photo shoot. Not shown are cases and displays of actual books that were there as well. But I think the toys are taking over. Even a high percentage of "books" are combo books-games-activities.

This shift from print to multi-media is not just visible at school book fairs, but in the children's section at the Barnes & Noble as well. I wonder how many kids will get real books as gifts this holiday season?

We have nobody ourselves to hold responsible for creating a postliterate society...

Are book fairs really about reading anymore?

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Reader Comments (22)

As if it's not bad enough that we are expected to sell all that junk, I am tired of refunding the money for the stuff that breaks 10 minutes after they buy it. It ain't all about the profits. We are educators, and the message is more imporant. We should be selling books.

February 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEllen

I sent my second grader to his Scholastic "book" fair at school last week. He came home with one book, and a dangerous stick with a pointing finger on it that cost nearly as much as the book. I was not happy and e-mailed scholastic to tell them. Yet to receive a reply.

March 23, 2010 | Unregistered Commentergary

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