By Yalini Anne Sampathkumar, 10
Jefferson Market Library has a great collection of kids’ books and some of the nicest librarians. I look for Rebecca Schosha every time I come. She is one of the librarians, who always gives me a warm greeting. I decided to interview her about the children’s section of the Jefferson Market Library.
YS: How long have you worked at the Jefferson Market Library and what is your favorite thing about it?
RS: I have worked at the Jefferson Market Library for about eleven years. The combination of working with kids in the library and helping them discover new books is my favorite thing. Working in this building is incredible because it is so beautiful and full of history. I also really love my co-workers here because it feels like I am part of a great big team and family.
YS: What are some of the resources the library uses for children?
A lot of our books come from the central ordering department where they buy a ton of books for us and send them in. We also do book orders every month where we get to refresh our graphic novel collection. Baker & Taylor is the company where we get most of our books.
What are some of your favorite children’s books?
Well I don’t have a favorite children’s book but here are some of my favorites.
Harry Potter by JK Rowling
Wonder by R. J. Palacio
Ramona by Beverly Clearly
What did you do before you came to a library and why did you choose to work in a library?
Before I came to the library I worked as a babysitter in Paris, France, a teacher’s assistant, and a receptionist. I felt like there was nothing else that would have made me as happy as working in a library, because I had always known I wanted to work with kids and even when I worked in the school I loved the library the most. The library had always felt like my safe and comfortable place. So I can’t really imagine myself doing anything else than working here, because bringing books and kids together is special to me.
What is your favorite thing to do in the library?
I love recommending books because I love reading books. The kids come back and tell me if they liked it or not and I enjoy that interaction. I also love doing story time because there was one time when I was really shy and then I found that I actually enjoyed reading aloud to others and with older kids you can recommend books, but with little kids you have to get them excited by reading aloud and do a little performing, which I never thought I would like. I also enjoy having class visits because people who might not come here on their own come with their class and I get to introduce them to the library.
Why do you think that libraries are important for everyone to have?
Libraries are community centers, a place where people can come and meet. The library is a place where everyone has equal access, and everyone is treated equally. Most importantly though, it is where you can access books and enjoy them, and as some people know books can change your life. There was a time in my life when I did not have libraries and it was really different. We might not all notice it, but being able to access books is a luxury and it is one that everyone should have.
What system do you use to organize your books and is it helpful?
The system we use is called the Dewey Decimal System. It is an old system and it arranges books by category and topic. The Dewey applies to nonfiction and information books, and our fiction is a range, but in alphabetical order by the author’s last name. I think it is helpful but others might not.
If you were sucked into a book which one would it be and why?
It would be Anne of Green Gables. I have always loved the Anne of Green Gables stories, the whole world and the friendships that she had. I have also never been to Prince Edward Island and that is where the books are set, but I have heard that it is beautiful, and so I want to see it.
During the interview, one lady Rebecca was helping said, “Rebecca is one of the best librarians I know and you can quote me!”