UA-8412995-1 The Southport Globe: A Fairfield Children's Book Club Donates Pequot Library Books

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Fairfield Children's Book Club Donates Pequot Library Books

a partnership in BOOKS: a fairfield children’s book club donates pequot library books to New Beginnings Family Academy in bridgeport, ct

Southport, CT – On Friday, November 9, 2012, four Fairfield school children donated 685 books, formerly from the Pequot Library collection, to New Beginnings Family Academy in Bridgeport, CT. The service project was inspired by literature. Southport resident Brooks Barry, age 9, third grade; and Fairfield residents and sisters Emma Langdon, age 11, fifth grade; Maddie Langdon, 13, seventh grade; and Claire Langdon, 13, seventh grade sorted, stamped, boxed and carted the books to Bridgeport’s first elementary and middle charter school. The K-8 charter school opened in September 2002, and has 400 students. Its motto is: Intelligence plus Character. All the donated books were children’s books, encyclopedias, reference books, fiction and non-fiction. They were old books, but books that children love such as Chitty Chitty Bang Bang by Ian Fleming and Twelve Great Western Philosophers. Some ancient history, books on the Civil War and the American Revolution had been deaccessioned by Pequot Library to make room for newer editions. The children said that many of the books in the charter school’s library are donated.
Mrs. Ronelle P. Swagerty, Executive Director of Friends of New Beginnings Family Academy said she was “thrilled to have the books, it felt like Christmas! The children came in armed with books and boxes stacked higher then these young leaders.” All homeschooled, the children’s book club is called the “Wonderland Booksavers Inspired by Literature.” The young Fairfield scholars wrote a 55-page bibliography that they presented to Mrs. Swagerty and school principal, Mr. Paul Whyte. The book club meets once a week for one hour to discuss a book and it was a virtue they read about in A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park, which inspired them to participate in this community contribution.

The partnership story, however, started years before. Mrs. Alison Barry, Brooks’ mother, said that her daughter, Zoe, worked at New Beginnings Family Academy and came home saying that the “book shelves were empty.” It was years later that the full partnership between a book club, a library and a school jelled. Mrs. Barry contacted Pequot Library asking if there were any books that were going to be deaccessioned.

Victoria Konopka, Library Services professional at Pequot Library explained that periodically “A library has to make a judgment call on when to let books go. Several factors come into play, usefulness, condition, and correct nature of the information. A librarian needs to review every book under consideration and decide if the book has an important book plate or is by an important author. Typically when a book is deaccessioned it goes to Pro Quo Books for recycling.” Not only did Brooks, Emma, Maddie and Claire provide a good service to the New Beginnings Family Academy, they helped out Pequot Library as well. After the 685 books were deaccessioned the children took on the tedious work of stamping each one of them, and marking out the bar codes. This was helpful to Pequot Library and one of the best parts of the experience for all the children. They said that they loved “all the stamping and crossing out of bars codes with a Sharpie marker!”

The Wonderland Booksavers Inspired by Literature would love to have other books donated to them. Mrs. Barry said, “Any books of any quality can be donated and even organizations looking for assistance” should contact Mrs. Barry at 203-434-5950 or Even though they didn’t push the carts over-flowing with boxes filled with books, also in attendance on donation day, were Mrs. Barry, Mrs. Lori Langdon and Dr. Martha Gates Lord, Executive Director of Pequot Library. Mrs. Lori Langdon said that the best part of the experience for her family was “spending a lot of time together going over every book donated.” Dr. Lord summed up the entire literary and public service experience by saying, “What a pleasure it is to see young people inspired by their love and enthusiasm for reading and their commitment to doing the significant work required to be able to share these books with other students.


Please visit to learn more and to support the Library. For information: 203-259-0346 ext. 15. Follow Pequot Library on Facebook.

Claire Langdon excited while showing each other books from Pequot Library
to be donated to New Family Beginnings Academy

All four children pushing cart of boxes of books into NBFA

Dr. Martha Lord, Emma Langdon, Claire Langdon, Brooks Barry, Maddie Langdon,
Mr. Paul Whyte

Hop on board the Reading Train at NBFA, Maddie Langdon, Brooks Barry, Claire Langdon, Emma Langdon

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