This morning, Ms. Wilkinson, our Kindergarten team lead, drove up to the front of the school in a borrowed moving truck. Someone immediately jumped on the intercom to announce the truck was here. And quietly and swiftly, staff came from all directions of the school moving boxes and boxes and boxes filled with books. Teachers worked together to move these heavy objects through the hallways and out to the waiting truck.

As I watched the floor of the truck begin to fill, my eyes did the same thing. I am overwhelmed by the amount of giving our school did in response to our county’s call for books. The Wake Up and Read book drive means so much to me. I know the value of a book as you have read many times from me.  I know the joy that children have when they are given a book to own, to keep, to put on their shelf or by their bed. And so many of these gifts were carried in by children, boxed up and are going to children.

I am grateful to our community for the outpouring of books. The generosity and heart to give is large at Joyner. Parents shared stories with me as students asked if they could bring books in. I placed books from my home shelves into the pile. Each book is a memory for me of reading it to my own child. I had the conversation with each of them asking to give the books to others. Children’s hearts are large. Sharing the gift of reading is joyful.

Ms. Wilkinson and I pulled into the donation location this afternoon. Happy to make it before the rain. The welcome committee of one opened her eyes wide in surprise at the amount of books. She shared the stories of her work at the donation location. I can only imagine the joy that sweeps into that site every moment they are open. The excitement of everyone who carried a book, a bag, a box or a car full of books. To own a book, makes you want to give a book.

Thank you, Joyner for your gift of literacy to all. There will be many children who will say thank you!