Of the different things I do at my kid’s school throughout the year my favorite is by far volunteering in the library twice a week. Once with each of my children’s classes. One weekly visit with my son’s third grade class and one visit with my daughter’s first grade class.
There are a few reasons why library time is my favorite. Partly because if there was a place with minimum chaos in an Elementary school, it’s the library and partly because I love books! The library, any library, feels familiar and safe to me. I adore spending even a little time shelving books or listening in when the librarian reads books to the kids.
But more than that, I love getting to watch the kids explore books. Especially since I get to watch the first graders discover reading for the first time. They are just now discovering this newfound superpower that is reading.
For the third graders it’s even more magical. Most of them have long moved past the mechanics of learning to read, and are moving into the joy of discovering new worlds in books. They are always looking for something new and different. Or sometimes after a topic becomes popular (dragons for instance) all of them start seeking out any book they can find having to do with dragons.
So I know what you’re wondering, what do my weekly trips to the school library have to do with SheHeroes exactly?
Well here at SheHeroes we’re helping parents, educators and kids find tools to help find and understand the importance of good role models. I like to think we’re raising awareness of gender messages in the media and more than anything I hope that through the videos and stories we tell on the blog we are inspiring girls to reach for the stars in ways they might never have thought possible.
Which is exactly what I get to do in the library each week every time a young girl comes up to me asking if I know of any good books for her to read. I can take her to the biography section and find (even when it takes a little searching) a book about a woman I know that might inspire her. Or maybe, depending on her reading level, Ill guide her to the Nancy Drew section, or Anne of Green Gables, maybe some fantasy by Robin McKinley, or Igraine the Brave. Or if she’s one of my favorite first graders I’ll take her through the early reader section to where I’ve mapped out books that I think show good strong female characters.
Thinking about it today after showing a third grader the Nancy Drew section for the first time, I realized that we all have opportunities to open the eyes and the minds of the SheHeroes and Heroes in our lives every single day.
And as grown women isn’t that our job? To simply point younger SheHeroes in a few different directions and let them decide which way to go? To help them find some inspiration when it doesn’t appear to them at first glance?
Yes. Yes it is. So how have YOU helped inspire someone today?