Kathryn Roots Lewis
Director of Media Services & Instructional Technology
Norman Public Schools
- I have served as a school librarian and school library director for a combined total of 26 years and as a teacher for 14 years in all grade levels from infants through 12th grade.
- Growing up, my sister and I played librarian complete with handmade date due slips and spine labels for our home book collection; and then many years later attended library school together and became school librarians.
- I served as the 2002-2003 President of the Oklahoma Library Association and was instrumental in establishing an association leadership institute that is held every three years for librarians from all types of libraries.
- I have the incredible good fortune of working with forward-thinking and innovative school librarians who empower learners every day. In fact, Norman Public Schools, the district where I currently serve as director (and have for the past 16 years), was honored as the 2007 District winner of the AASL National School Library Media Program of the Year.
- My husband and I live in the house I grew up in (only after extensive remodeling!) and enjoy spending time with our two grown children, their spouses, and our grandchildren.
Nottoway Middle School
- I started a summer bookmobile in 2016 and this year added lunches to the bookmobile with a grant.
- I have been a librarian for 7 years, all in middle school.
- I love collaborating with ALL the teachers in my building, even the band director.
- I organized my library by genre two summers ago and book circulation has increased.
- I have been a librarian since I was about 9 years old, just didn’t act on it until later in life. I cataloged all of my own books for my bookcase, with labels and numbers.
District Library Media Specialist
Airport Community Schools
- This was the first year that we hosted a Battle of the Books competition at our middle school. The event was held during the first part of May, one short month prior to summer break. The students loved it! It takes quite a bit of effort to organize one of these. We had worked together for months to read and discuss the books, organize the event, recruit volunteer judges and advertise. When it was over I breathed a sigh of relief. The next day one by one student participants came into the library to tell me how much fun they had had and each one of them asked if we could do another one before school was out!
- My first library job was to create a library for a private, Christian school. I wrote a collection development policy and created a nice little library comprised entirely of books that had been donated by supporters of the school.
- Our high school library is thrilled to house a special collection of Presidential Biographies that have been donated by a community member. The interesting part of this is how the purchasing for this collection works. The community member and his family donate the money, then I purchase the books and check them out to the community member. The members of our library book club gift wrap each one. The books are then “given” to the donor for Father’s Day, his birthday and Christmas. He reads them and returns them to be added to the collection. We have all had a great time building this collection.
- Recently our high school library has started circulating textbooks. Our auto shop teacher asked if we could also manage the socket sets that each student much borrow for the year. This has been our first year to do this. This spring as the sets were returned we realized that we would need to create a new procedure for the return of these. Motor oil does not really fit in well with a library collection.
- I have two sons. One graduated Magna Cum Laude from college this year with a degree in business, and the other, who graduated from high school this year at the top of his class, has his picture on the side of a city bus.
Region 4 Director
University of South Carolina, School of Library and Information Science
- My favorite book is a two-way tie between Jane Eyre and Alice in Wonderland.
- I was a middle school librarian for six years at Reidsville Middle School in North Carolina.
- I first “genrefied” my library back in 2005. The last time around it was popular I suppose.
- I have been working with the AASL Best Websites for Teaching and Learning Committee in some way or another since their second year in 2009.
- Fun fact: I have a black belt in Tae Kwon Do.
Region 8 Director
Library Supervisor and Curriculum Coordinator
Anchorage School District
- I once got a reluctant reader to read Hamlet because he wanted a book where “everybody dies” – His response after he finished the book? “That Shakespeare guy – not bad…did he write anything else?” – Let me introduce you to Coriolanus and Macbeth.
- I weed in over 60 libraries and I believe that effective weeding is a key component to engagement in the library and failure to effectively weed is a form of censorship.
- I once read Yertle the Turtle to 30 high school students in the library during a power outage.
- It is not a good idea to put science classrooms above a library because:
A: if the floor drain is put at the high point in the floor instead of the low point and:
B: Somehow the sink gets left going full blast all night and a piece of paper gets in the sink then:
C: You have a tropical rainstorm in the library for several hours and it takes our over 500 books, 15 computers and causes the librarian to “lose it” (Yeah – I admit I did pretty much lose it).
- I live in Alaska – I have called in late to work for moose when they decide to lay down at the bottom of my stairs because my neighbor has the dryer going and it is venting warm air in the middle of winter.
ESLS Representative to the AASL Board of Directors
University of Kentucky
- To prepare for my first position as a school librarian, I attended the ALA Annual Conference for the first time in 1998.
- My first article was published in Knowledge Quest in 2004 and shared information about the importance of school librarian outreach to preschool providers and children.
- My favorite book to share with children in an elementary school library is Chrysanthemum by Kevin Henkes.
- My research focuses on the literacy development of children and adolescents within the context of library services and programming.
- I love spending time with my husband and our six children!
Author: Meg Featheringham, KQ Editor
Meg Featheringham is responsible for the development and production of the AASL journal, Knowledge Quest. When not working at AASL, Meg enjoys playing euchre, attending concerts and plays, spending time with family and friends, and reading (of course).