Leaving Your Mark in the Children’s Room   Volunteer Experiences


I have always loved going to the library.  Reading is one of my favorite hobbies and I particularly like the classics, poetry, philosophy, and books about history.  My favorite books growing up were the Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis, the Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, and anything about history or biology.  As I grew up I became used to coming here and during the summer before senior year I started volunteering, partially to put on my college resume and partially just because it was a familiar setting that I thought working at would be fun.  Volunteering here is a calming experience.  It involves a lot of mundane tasks like sorting books.  There are also many creative tasks I am asked to do, and this is the most fun part of the job.  I get to design signs, set up display cases, and hunt for books that relate to specific themes throughout the year.  Other times I even help visitors in the Children’s Department find books, and helping people is always a rewarding experience.  Everyone here is very nice and has a mutual interest in literature.  The library is actually surprisingly festive in addition to being peaceful.  There are always seasonal decorations, art projects, and craft groups.  Anyway I can help this stimulating, positive atmosphere I know is a worthwhile way to spend my time.

George Price

As a six year veteran of Saint Sebastian’s, an all-boys school in Needham, the tendency to find one’s niche is inevitable.  Despite the already small class sizes, it is still comforting to find a very select group of friends and stick with them.  This tendency however leads to a seclusion of everyone else, both inside the school as well as beyond its perimeters.  Although I can tell you exactly what each of my friends will eat for lunch each day, or what class they will be at what time my breadth of knowledge is limited to this group.

I realized that clearly this narrow-minded style of living would not serve me well in the coming years in college, so when a community service option at my school displayed itself, I knew this would be a perfect opportunity to expand my horizons.  I decided that I would volunteer at the Norwood Library over the course of the winter months.

I soon found that this experience would be no easy transition.  The first aspect that caught me off guard was the new faces.  From fellow volunteers to those working behind the desk I was stuck in that awkward period of knowing no one’s name and, frankly, having no idea what I was doing.  Looking past the physical relationships, my experience with books was usually limited to a bookstore, so being in a library was also alien to me.  I had no idea where books were located, nor how they were organized by number, followed by decimal, and topped off by country.  I was stumped.  Nonetheless I continued to come every Wednesday and Friday after school, and slowly but surely, I apologized for the cliche, the library became my new place of comfort.  Every Wednesday I would find the same man sitting in the “Young Adults” section reading the “Game of Thrones” chapter that coincided with the television program.  Similarly, I became familiar with the group of Saint Catherine students that piled into the kids center right around 3 o’clock.

What once seemed a burden now was not only enjoyable, but helpful.  Organizing books, surprisingly, can be quite interesting if you do not diminish the experience to a mere filing exercise.  Although I do not plan on reading Nancy Drew anytime soon, whenever I delved into the Young Adults section I could find a new story by David Baldacci, which would serve as my reading material for the week.  The exposure to all the authors and titles, even if only for a short while, has served me well both as a reader and a volunteer.  Furthermore, the library enabled me to wander outside of my Saint Sebastian’s coated bubble and became more comfortable with people and books alike.

Celia H

I volunteer at the Norwood Morrill Memorial Library every week.  Normally I do lots of “odd jobs” like looking for books or organizing them.  After I come home from the library I usually can’t wait to come back.  I love volunteering and reading, so helping out at the town library is great.  The librarians are great and it’s interesting to see them working with everyone around the building.  With the other things I do every day-school and every evening and afternoon activity-the library is both my favorite place to relax and to volunteer.

Katie Hughes

It’s nice to volunteer at the library every week.  I’m homeschooled so I’m at my house all day, and I have a younger brother and sister who are homeschooled also.  Although we get on quite well, volunteering at the library is a nice escape from the craziness of being together all the time.  I can come here and just focus on the work.  Things are quiet here and serene being surrounded by books.

Ever since I was small I’ve had a profound love for reading and books.  My mum always says that if you can learn to read and read well you can teach yourself to do anything.  Books can do that for you; they arm you better than any weapon.  They teach you about things that have happened in the past, things that have happened in other places, and by knowing these things, we can gain foresight and see steps ahead on our own path and avoid making similar mistakes.  They expand our mind and show us ways to look at things that we’ve never thought of before, and maybe would never have thought.  And since I’ve been volunteering here, I’ve experienced so many different books that I didn’t even know were out there!  I’ve learned to do so many things that I probably wouldn’t have if I weren’t volunteering here.

It is one of the highlights of my week!  No matter what kind of rubbish day I’m having, I can be in pain, depressed, stressed out, it doesn’t matter.  After going to the library I’m always in  a better mood!  I’m always excited to show my mum the new books I check out, and tell her about the things I do.  Because of this, my younger brother started volunteering too!  And he loves it.  It’s become something nice that he and I can do together, just the two of us.  Sometimes my little sister comes along to hang out.  In January I will have been volunteering for tow years, and I still enjoy it so much.  My friends’ parents will ask me if I’m still volunteering at the library and if I still like it, and it gets tiring because the answer is always going to be yes!

QianQian Lin

I visit the library every week, to study English and to check out books.  I like volunteering in the Children’s Room.

Brian Richardson

I clean the books.  I like to check out books.  The people are nice.


Jr. Friends of the Library
Grades 6-12

If you enjoy working with children, or love to read, you should consider volunteering in the children’s room. Volunteers usually work for 2 hours per week at a variety of tasks. If interested, please stop by the children’s desk.

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