The Circle Game

It hit me the other day that the first kindergarten class to be in the new library is getting very big. I still have a tendency to think the library is a fledgling, hardly able to fly.  But that is not the case. Those kindergartner’s are now in third grade. They can use the library computers to look up books and then locate the book on the shelves just by reading the call numbers. They know the difference between a reference book, a non-fiction book, a chapter book and a picture book. They consistently write book reviews and recommend books to their peers. They are responsible borrowers who have a passion for all things “Library”.

When we set up the library, we made a goal of having 15 books per student. In 2008 after purchasing our open day collection we had 2900 holdings with an average of 5.4 books per student. There was space left on our shelves to add book. Today, we have 5700 holdings with an average of 10.4 books per student!!!! We have doubled our collection in 4 short years!!!!! The shelves are full, overflowing with knowledge.

As a professional I too have grown. That first year scared me. I had my own education, but I kept thinking, “am I equipped to take on such a massive project?” Without, the support of our administration, the teachers and  the parents faith I don’t know that would have made it. But here I am, sharing my passion for books and knowledge with your children. In fact, I am lucky enough to be attending the American Association of School Librarians (a division of the American Library Association) conference in Minneapolis at the end of October. I can’t wait to bring back new and exciting ideas for the library.

Maybe, I am just feeling a little nostalgic but the other day I bought a children’s CD of rock and pop songs for Edwin.  There was one song titled The Circle Game that has stuck with me. I find myself singing it. I hadn’t heard it before and being a librarian I had to investigate. It is actually a song by Joni Mitchell. I find the lyrics fitting.


Yesterday, a child came out to wander
Caught a dragonfly inside a jar
Fearful when the sky was full of thunder
And tearful at the falling of a star

And the seasons they go ’round and ’round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

Then, the child moved ten times ’round the seasons
Skated over ten clear frozen streams
Words like, “When you’re older”, must appease him
And promises of someday make his dreams

Sixteen springs and sixteen summers gone now
Cartwheels turn to car wheels through the town
And they tell him, “Take your time. It won’t be long now.
‘Til you drag your feet to slow the circles down”

And the seasons they go ’round and ’round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and round and round
In the circle game

So the years spin by and now the boy is twenty
Though his dreams have lost some grandeur coming true
There’ll be new dreams, maybe better dreams and plenty
Before the last revolving year is through.

And the seasons they go ’round and ’round
And the painted ponies go up and down
We’re captive on the carousel of time
We can’t return, we can only look behind
From where we came
And go round and ’round and ’round
In the circle game
And go ’round and ’round and ’round in the circle game.

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