Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted over at The Broke and the Bookish.
Jacqueline’s Top Ten Bookish Memories
- Meeting David Sedaris: my sister and I went to hear David read from his notebook of unpublished works a few years ago at a small theater in Canton. Before the reading he sat at a little table in the lobby and signed books. Nobody really noticed him sitting there at first, so my sister and I jumped up to the table and chatted with him (in French!) for a few minutes. He signed my book, gave me a little piece of chocolate from his pocket (really, I’m not kidding!) and we went on our way. He taught my sister to swear the French way, and told me that he is glad I don’t go by the name Jackie. True story.
- I remember many, many visits to our local Holland library growing up where my mom let me take home entire stacks of books.
- Similarly, I remember going to the bookstore at the mall and my parents letting me buy any books I wanted (or, at least it seemed like it to me). I truly believe this is what fostered my love for books.
- In 5th grade we had to read a certain number of books each report card time. I can’t remember what it was, but I’m sure it wasn’t much. After you met your goal, the teacher let you choose something from his box of prizes. I remember reading furiously to make sure my total was higher than my friends, and getting to choose countless books and other prizes from the box. Such a smart man, that teacher, for capitalizing on our fifth grade competitive natures.
- Discovering Goodreads- what a happy day.
- Amazon Prime- makes it okay to order just one book. As if I need more reasons to order more books.
- I remember being little and crawling up on my mom’s lap in our old wooden rocking chair at night when she would read to me. I hope my daughter someday remembers us reading to her, too.
- Which brings me to #8- every time my daughters bring me books to read, and the true joy they get from being read to. Even the just-turned-one-year-old will bring me a book and climb into my lap to be read to. I truly hope we’re raising them to love books like I do.
- The first time I took my daughter to the library: she was so amazed that there were so many books in one place, and a bit overwhelmed at the idea that she had to pick just a few to take home. Even now, a year and many trips later, she has a really hard time choosing which ones to pull from the shelves.
- When my first project was funded through donorschoose.org, since I meant I got to share more books with more students!
Jessica’s Top Ten Bookish Memories
- Harry Potter. Basically, anything about the books. I remember I had not heard of the books until Goblet of Fire was just coming out. I was in Disney World and saw all of the posters for Goblet and had no idea what it was. I was looking at the books in a gift shop and a little boy told me that the books were so good and I had to read them. I had my aunt pick me up Sorcerer’s Stone and after that it was love. I remember falling in love with the world Rowling had created. This lead to many laughs, tears, and two midnight release parties with my brother. Harry Potter was a part of my life for TEN years! You can’t beat that!
- My fourth grade teacher reading out loud to us. Mrs. Gilliam introduced me to many books I never would have read on my own – Island of the Blue Dolphins, The Great Brain, and The Indian in the Cupboard. We all loved read aloud time and begged for more every day. I fell more in love with reading because of her.
- Teaching Of Mice and Men. I love this book. I never read it until I prepared to teach it during my third year of teaching. I bawled hysterically at home. I had no idea how I was going to get through the last two chapters when I read to my students. Somehow I did, with a choking voice. My students appreciated it though. I have seen students wiping eyes when we read the end; two years ago, a girl yelled out “NO!” in the middle of class. I love seeing how such a small book has such an impact on so many people.
- Going to the library as a child. My parents were readers and made reading a big part of our lives. We went to the library all the time. I always had books to read and I am so thankful for that. I hope to share this passion with my own children one day in the same way my parents shared it with me.
- Reading by flashlight under the covers. My big “rebellion” as a child was staying up past my bed time to read a book. I used a flashlight and hid under my covers so I could as much reading in as possible. I was a real wild child. I think my parents knew, even tough I thought I was so slick, but they were happy to see me wanting to read. Books were constant companions in my bed as I grew up.
- Reading Speak in college. Speak was a required book for my literature methods class. Since the moment I picked it up at the bookstore, I could tell there was something special about this book. I wanted to be part of the group to present on it, even though it meant going first and being in a group with other students I did not know. This book was life-changing. It was my “gateway” book to YA Lit. I had no idea books like this existed for teens; I never had any like it when I was a teen. I was so glad I got to teach it my first year and love seeing how it captures readers year after year.
- Seeing David Levithan speak in Kalamazoo. He did a public engagement at the Kalamazoo Public Library my senior year of college. It was not long after Boy Meets Boy was published and just before Marley’s Ghost was published. I was so moved by his message and the writing he read from his books. People protested his speaking since he had written Boy Meets Boy and when asked about it, he answered so lovingly and honestly, I was very impressed. He signed a copy of Boy Meets Boy for me and I still cherish it today.
- Reading Wonder out loud to my tenth graders. I was terrified to read aloud, thinking my sophomores would find it babyish and boring. However, they were engaged in Auggie’s story and always wanted to know more. I loved seeing how they wanted more each day and how quickly they could bring another student up-to-speed about what we read the day before. This is also the first time I completely lost it – sobbing, could not speak lost it – in front of my students. (Thankfully, Jacqueline was there to take over for me!) My students respected me for it and were very understanding to how the novel affected me. It was a great moment.
- Finding other passionate readers. Whether through Twitter, Nerdy Book Club, or my amazing co-workers, I love having so many outlets to discuss books and reading, especially YA Lit. I appreciate having people I can share my passion with and who “get” it. I am very lucky to be surrounded by so many readers.
- When a student tells me how much he or she loves a book. Whether it is the fifth book she has read that trimester or the first book he admits to reading since fifth grade, I love when I see a student click with a book. I see it all over their face when they talk about it and tell me and their classmates about it. There is nothing more powerful than seeing the love come from a teen in my classroom.