Barrow Buddy Book Builders~Donate Books to Our Library


For the past 4 years, we have had a program at Barrow called the Barrow Buddy Book Builders.  This program has allowed families and community members to purchase new books for our library from a wishlist and dedicate those books to someone special or in memory of someone.  When orders were made, I had conversations with the students involved so that the book that was chosen matched an interest that they had.  I also handled all of the financial records, wrote receipts, made the dedication labels and certificates, placed the order, processed the books when the came in, and more.  Now that I no longer have a paraprofessional this program was one that I had to look at closely.  Thankfully, Bound to Stay Bound Books, one of our main vendors, started a program called S.O.S Library.  This program is essentially the same thing I was already doing, but BTSB does all of the work!

I just bought the first book for our library, Elephant and Piggie:  Let’s Go for a Drive!,  in honor of my daughter and son, and the process was really easy to follow.

Here’s how it works:

  • Starting today, visit
  • Browse our wishlist of books.  Select the book(s) you wish to purchase and add to your cart.  If there is a specific book you are looking for but don’t see on the list, email me and I’ll add it to the list if it’s available.
  • Choose your donation plate and add your dedication.
  • Checkout.
  • The book(s) will be shipped directly to our school already ready to put onto the library shelves!
  • BTSB will email you a receipt for your tax records.

Even if you can’t afford to purchase a whole book, you can make a monetary donation on the site as well.  Donated money will be pooled together to purchase books from the list.  You can even add a monetary donation to your book order if you want to give a little more.

I’m so glad that we are able to continue the Book Builder Program in a new way.  I hope you’ll visit our site today to make your donation and share with anyone and everyone.

All Aboard for Picture Book Month

Picture book month is coming to a close, but big celebrations, surprises, and planning are happening in the Barrow Media Center.  Just today, I have been brainstorming with teachers about upcoming units and almost every grade level is preparing to begin persuasive writing.  We are thinking of sponsoring a writing contest in the media center where students write persuasive essays on the importance of picture books, but I’m still playing around with this idea and what I might actually make the “topic” of the contest be.

Also, today, I was surprised to find an envelope in my box with a donation from a group of community members in honor of someone’s birthday.  I was able to order several new picture books (and chapter books) to add to our collection.

Finally, a big surprise arrived at our school today:  an autographed copy of The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg.  Mrs. Lori Frumkin used to be a teacher at our school and is now working with the Chicago Public Library.  She heard Chris Van Allsburg talking about is books to several groups, and she remembered how special Polar Express Day is at Barrow and got a copy of the book autographed for our school.  Thank you so much, Mrs. Frumkin!

We are planning our Polar Express Day for December 15th and decorating has begun.  We’re also planning a Polar Express Alumni Night.  Later this week, Mrs. Rockholt and I will be preparing hundreds of certificates for students who participated in picture book month.  What an exciting time!