September 2022 Updates from the Library

Elyse Seltzer, Supervisor of the PK-12 Libraries
Happy Fall! September is a very busy time in the Library and the School. Students are getting back in the hang of the routines of the space and the Learning Commons. The Library, Learning Center, Writing Center, and Math Lab have been very active during free blocks, study halls, tutoring sessions, and reading periods.    
As we flowed from summer to fall, students completed the Read Harder Challenge and continued to read through the Massachusetts Children Book Award Nominees (for 6th graders) and Massachusetts Teen Choice Awards voting (for Grades 7-12), which closes on September 23. If you have read and liked one of these titles, go ahead and vote for it! To see what I read this summer, check out my Instagram post (@seltzersnaps).   
Beyond the reading opportunities, there are also some writing and research opportunities beyond the Brimmer walls.    
  • On September 24 at 1:00 p.m., planeteer and Brimmer student Evan M. ’24 is hosting a session on opinion writing to increase impact on local climate solutions. Come prepared with a topic, and we'll help you craft it into an impactful op-ed! Zoom link -   
  •  The Profile in Courage Essay Contest, for which you must describe and analyze an act of political courage by a US elected official who served during or after 1917, is open for submissions. The contest deadline is January 13, 2023.  
September 15 marked the start of Hispanic Heritage Month, which we will be celebrating through October 15 and beyond. The Library has a display of books by Latinx authors and a display that highlights members of our community who identify as Hispanic and Latinx. I’ve made a Wakelet of resources for Latinx Heritage Month, which includes resources giving background on the two terms “Latin” versus “Hispanic” and the complicated connection to racial identity.    
This week is also Banned Book Week. Banned Book Week has been observed around the last week of September since 1982 when there was a national surge in banned and challenged books; unfortunately, we are in a similar moment. Banned Book Week aims to celebrate the freedom to read and for all to recognize that books unite us while censorship divides us (ALA 2022). There is a display in the Library of the most challenged books in the last three years.  A challenged book is a book where there was a formal attempt made to have access to the book removed, and a ban is when that removal occurred. Unfortunately, all the books on display have also been banned in communities across the nation. Fortunately, none of these books have been challenged or banned in our Library, so feel free to check them out.    
I am very excited that our campus is once again open to the community beyond the students and staff. Please feel free to stop by the Library and say hello. I am also hoping for a couple of volunteers to help manage the checking and shelving of books used by our very active reading community. 
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As an inclusive private school community, Brimmer welcomes students who will increase the diversity of our school. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, disability, sexual orientation, national origin, ancestry, or any other characteristic protected from discrimination under state or federal law, in the administration of our educational policies, admissions practices, financial aid decisions, and athletic and other school-administered programs.