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In-School 'Bookmobiles' Bring Books to Students
In-School 'Bookmobiles' Bring Books to Students
Posted on 10/30/2020
A collage showing Ms. Skroski helping students with her Bookmobile.Top photo: A collage showing Ms. Skroski helping students with her Bookmobile. Bottom photo: Bell Kindergarten students had a Media Center lesson about book care and were invited to check out their first book from the Bell Media Center in September.

By Tim Reaves
BCS Communications Department

West Buncombe Elementary School (WBES) Media Specialist Maggie Skroski said she’ll “do anything to get a book in a child’s hands,” and in this time of physical distancing, she came up with a creative way to make it happen.

West Buncombe’s media center is closed to students, so Ms. Skroski created a “bookmobile bus” out of cardboard, spray paint, and glue. She attached it to a media center cart and put a picture of herself in the driver’s seat. The contraption is a bit unwieldy, but the children light up when they see it coming down the hall.

“These kids crave knowledge like I’ve never seen, and this ‘bus’ with my face on it makes them laugh,” she said. “Together with their teachers, we’re kindling a love of reading even in troubled times.”

For K-2 students, Ms. Skroski rolls the bookmobile to different classrooms and lays out the books for a touch-free experience. One at a time, students browse and point at the books they want, then go through the check-out process. For grades 3-4, students place a “hold” on the books they want, and she pulls books off the shelves and delivers them.

Bell Kindergarten students had a Media Center lesson about book care and were invited to check out their first book from the Bell Media Center in September.BELL’S CURBSIDE BOOKMOBILE

Ms. Skroski was inspired by Charles C. Bell Elementary School’s (CCBES) kindergarten teachers and media center staff, who teamed up at the beginning of the school year to make a similar bookmobile for kindergartners and later all remote-only students. Families see the yellow cardboard bus when they come to pick up curbside meals from BCS School Nutrition.

“We want the bookmobile to connect remote students with the school without having to come in the building,” said CCBES Media Specialist Jill Rose. “They still get a sense that they have a community, that they’re part of Bell.”

Media center staff also bring books to classrooms and encourage students to take advantage of BCS’ partnership with Buncombe County Public Libraries, which allows them to check out digital books, audio books, magazines, and many other media.

“They have so much right at their fingertips,” Ms. Rose said.

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