Career porn

Pretty much.

Anyone who talked to me after Wednesday’s class, or experienced the absolute tear I went on via Facebook can tell you that I’m psyched about this school library stuff.  After spending 23 years not having a clue what I wanted to do with my life, finally hitting on something that I find meaningful and fun and exciting is an immense relief.  It’s great to hear librarians talking about what they do, and not only thinking that I’d like to do it, but that I’m actually capable of it and believe I’ll be great at it.

It was fantastic to hear from Sue Kowalski.  Not only was it pretty sweet to check out the library scene at my alma mater (yes I just used that word) but I was actually really thrilled to hear that she was less than enthused about working with younger kids.  I know that being certified K-12 will imply a certain amount of time spent with children, and that I need to be open to that possibility when it comes time to find a job, but it was a relief to hear that it’s okay for a school librarian to have issues with little kids. 

I shadowed an elementary librarian last year, and it honestly wasn’t as bad as I imagined – I’m used to seeing kids at the public library where they tend to act out.  They were much better behaved at school than I expected. 

But still.  Even as a kid I did not like other kids.  I distinctly remember getting in trouble for not sharing my toys, not because I was selfish, but because I was grossed out by other kids.  Kids are erratic, noisy, volatile, messy, inexperienced, uninhibited, and they lack body control.  I know that other people relish these challenges, but I just don’t.  I haven’t been around kids – no siblings, no babysitting, no close relatives having babies – so everything they do is just a huge freaking shock to me. 

Weirdly, I have no problem with kids older than about 9 or 10.  There comes a point where they stop being just generic kids and become individuals, and at that point I seem to be able to relate to them.  I feel like my attitude and perspective is going to be most effective with middle and high school students.  I get that they’re challenging in different ways, but I think I’m far better prepared to manage those types of challenges. 

On a different note, I enjoyed hearing from Buffy Hamilton, and I think it’s great that she’s able to run her library and still maintain such an expansive online brand.  Visibility is a big deal if we’re going to talk about breaking down stereotypes and old assumptions, so I’m keeping her example in the back of my brain as I move forward.

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2 Comments

  1. I feel the same way about kids. I know being a female and future librarian, I'm supposed to pinch their cheeks and say what cute little muffins they are, but I am terrified of kids. And someone else in the class was saying that they were grossed out by all the substances that seem to come out of kids aged eight and under.

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