Books Matter!
  1. Strand PHIL.II Philanthropy and Civil Society
    1. Standard PCS 02. Diverse Cultures
      1. Benchmark E.3 Identify the similarities in philanthropic behavior among people of different cultural backgrounds.
      2. Benchmark E.4 Demonstrate listening skills.
  2. Strand PHIL.III Philanthropy and the Individual
    1. Standard PI 01. Reasons for Individual Philanthropy
      1. Benchmark E.1 Describe one reason why a person might give or volunteer.
      2. Benchmark E.10 Identify reasons why historic figures acted for the common good.
      3. Benchmark E.4 Give an example of how citizens act for the common good.
      4. Benchmark E.9 Give examples how people give time, talent or treasure in different cultures.
  3. Strand PHIL.IV Volunteering and Service
    1. Standard VS 01. Needs Assessment
      1. Benchmark E.1 Identify a need in the school, local community, state, nation, or world.
    2. Standard VS 03. Providing Service
      1. Benchmark E.1 Provide a needed service.
    3. Standard VS 05. Integrating the Service Experience into Learning
      1. Benchmark E.3 Identify outcomes from the service.

After reading the book The Librarian of Basra by Jeanette Winter children talk about the importance of books to any community. They discuss ways to take action for the good of the community related to literature. 

PrintOne 50-Minute Session

The learner will:

  • reflect on the importance of literature to communities.
  • design artistic pieces to communicate the importance of reading, taking care of books, and being part of a community.
  • read-aloud copy of The Librarian of Basra by Jeanette Winter
  • Learning to Give's literature guide for The Librarian of Basra

Winter, Jeanette. The Librarian of Basra. Harcourt Children's Books, 2005). ISBN-10: 0152054456 ISBN-13: 978-0152054458

  1. Anticipatory Set:

    Name your favorite children's book and explain why you like it and what it has meant to you. Ask the children to name their favorite children's book and explain their choice.

  2. Read The Librarian of Basra aloud and use this literature guide to facilitate a discussion about the importance of books and learning to a community.

  3. Compare and contrast the actions of Dr. King in Martin’s Big Words to the actions of Alia in Librarian of Basra. Ask: What does Alia Muhammad Baker have in common with Martin Luther King, Jr.?

  4. Brainstorm the importance of books and their many uses. As part of the conversation, imagine what life would be like without books. 

  5. From Martin’s Big Words, they learned that one person can make a difference through service. In the Librarian of Basra, they learned that one person’s compassion and dedication can impact others. Just as the librarian demonstrated her kindness by saving the books, we can share a love for books by making artistic creations that communicate the importance of books.

  6. Brainstorm places to donate their art, such as libraries, book rooms, senior citizens, younger students, or sick children in hospitals. Talk about what organizations in the community might need or benefit from the messages about literature and books.

  7. Positive messages that promote reading and book care may include: “Books are Precious,” or “Take Care of Books and they Take Care of You!”

  8. After they have finished their art, donate the pieces to the chosen recipients. Be sure to take pictures (if appropriate) for lasting memories.