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Farragut Middle Schoolers Taste Some Scrumptious Stories

picture of Gingham checkered labels of book and of reading kids at Gingham covered tablesArianna Grassia, librarian for grades 5-12, stood above a table of fifth graders pointing to a collection of graphic novels. Taped to the red and white checkered tablecloth was a laminated ‘Graphic Novels’ sign and a definition that read ‘similar to comic books, these types of novels use sequential art to tell a story and can be fiction, non-fiction, history, and fantasy.’ At the Annual Book Tasting event, a five-year tradition for Hastings middle and high schoolers, students are being introduced to new books from a variety of genres. middle

The allotted time for exploration has begun and the library classroom is filled with students. Spread out at separate tables each with a specific genre, the fifth grade group began flipping through pages and reading excerpts out loud.

“Don’t forget to rate your favorite books by answering the questions in the pamphlet,” Grassia said to the class. 

In their pamphlets, which left space for five different books to rate, students jotted down their answers to the following questions: 

  • What is the genre/book title? 
  • What do you think of the cover?
  • After reading a few pages, what do you think of the book?
  • What did the author do to hook or interest you in the book? 
  • Would you read this book? 

At the top of each section was a place to write their rating. 

“Is this where we write our favorite titles?” asked one student holding a book-mark. 

 kids at tables readingGrassia quickly replied, “Yes!”

According to Grassia, the Book Tasting allows students to discover books they’ve probably passed on the shelf many times but never had the opportunity to explore. 

“I think providing students these opportunities to explore books that I find for them, in addition to books they discover themselves, gives them a well-rounded view of the impressive, diverse collection of books that we have here in the library,” Grassia said. “I love to see almost every student leave the Book Tasting with something, and there’s always a lot of excitement over their new finds.”

Teachers in every grade support bringing their students to the library for the event every year. 

“It really is a special experience for everyone,” Grassia added.