4.16.2013

National Bookmobile Day

1911 Book Van - NYPL
 Did you know that tomorrow is National Bookmobile Day?  Well it is.  If you live in a city, like mine, where there hasn't been a public library bookmobile in decades, you may be thinking, "who still uses a bookmobile?"  Turns out, a lot of folks depend on mobile libraries.  People who live in rural areas, people who don't have transportation, children, old people, sick people, busy people, and even lazy people can enjoy all kinds of library services through mobile libraries.  Now you should be asking, "why doesn't my city have a bookmobile?"

Celebrate your favorite bookmobile or cheer for one to drive your way during tomorrow's celebration.  At the American Library Association's National Bookmobile Day webpage, you can find printable, foldable bookmobiles that students can construct.  Or try a different foldable bookmobile courtesy of illustrator Bob Staake.
Let students use these printables or design their own shoebox bookmobiles and have a mini parade to raise awareness about the history and importance of mobile libraries.

To give students ideas for their miniature bookmobiles, introduce them to some of the world's most interesting bookmobiles and the fearless, beloved librarians who care for them.  Start by reading Jeanette Winter's book Biblioburro: A True Story from Colombia to find out about Luis Soriano and his donkey library that shared books in rural Colombia.

Discover Alaska's Kusco Book Express, a floating library that brings books to families along the Kuscokwim River.
LitSite Alaska
Learn about Proyecto Bibliomula, which employs a team of mules to transport books to people in rural Venezuela.
Proyecto Bibliomula
Read about Kenya's Camel Library Service that shares books with the nomadic people in the country's northeastern region.
Book Aid International
Then, browse through many other interesting bookmobiles in ALA's Celebrating 100 Years of Bookmobiles presentation.

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