Henderson Book Tasting

Posted on 09/11/2018
Principal Dr. Jennette Barker with students at the Henderson Book Tasting


The line to get into the new hot spot stretched out the door and down the hallway. “Hello sir, how many are in your party? Six? Wonderful, you’re in for a treat,” said the cheerful hostess. As the party of Henderson fifth graders made their way to a table in the Learning Commons, plates of tasty books were being carried out and set in front of the eager students. “This week our fifth graders are getting a taste of new books,” said one of the servers, Principal Dr. Jennette Barker. “There was a long wait, and they were hungry. One student told me she was starving for a good book!”

“We decided to do something fun to get students interested in different books that they might not pick off the shelves, so we came up with a book tasting,” said Library Media Specialist Emily Gillett. “It’s like a restaurant, and each table has a different genre as the theme. They get a little taste for about five minutes before they move on to the next table, and each table has bookmarks where they can create a must-read list.”

Students wait to be seated at the Henderson Book TastingTable one had spicy mysteries, plentiful servings of both Nancy Drew and the Hardy Boys. At table three, biographies, Abraham Lincoln was served with a side of Jackie Robinson. Fifth grader Morgan Smith was seated at table seven, digging into some savory science fiction. “I like the restaurant idea, it’s fancy and fun. There are a lot of book options to choose from, and it makes me want to find new books to read.”

While many students were enjoying the variety, Dylan Rowatt also has his sights set firmly on the future. “Normally you don’t have time to read all of these books in a regular library period, this gives you a chance to read more books. Sometimes you get tired of reading the same sort of books over and over and want to read a new book. You have to read a lot when you get older, so it’s something you have to learn to be successful.”

Adam William was obviously looking for a table with comedy fare but understood the importance of keeping with the theme. “What did one plate say to the other? Lunch is on me!”

Gillett enjoys serving these “hot dishes” to students, and the students are excited about the large and varied menu. “We’ve had great feedback, we had some students here the other day and I said ‘OK, you only have three more tables to go to,’ and they said ‘yes, we have three more tables!’ They didn’t want to leave, so it’s a fun way to end our school day.”

Students should always remember that you don’t need a reservation to get a good table at the Learning Commons in any Francis Howell school, just bring your appetite and your love of reading!

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