Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘experience’

12182018_thirdplacebooks_124554-768x512

Photos: Dean Rutz / The Seattle Times
Comfortable easy chairs tempt customers at Lake Forest Park’s Third Place Books near Seattle. Some independent bookstores aim to be an extension of your living room.

The demise of the bookstore keeps being predicted, but independent shops flourish here and there. The survivors are the ones that provide more than a book.

Moira Macdonald reports for the Seattle Times, “If you walk through the entrance of Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park — right past the signs by the door that say EAT SLEEP READ — on a random weekday afternoon, you might find something nobody could have predicted a decade ago: a neighborhood bookstore, busy and thriving. …

“Ten years ago, when the recession hit and Amazon’s deep discounts seemed to sound a death knell for independent bookstores, such a picture might have seemed like the most fantastical of fiction. Beloved Seattle bookstores were closing their doors throughout the aughts, and those who remained open seemed to face an impossibly uphill task — who would pay full price for a book when you could buy it for less online? But there’s more to an indie bookstore than the price on a book’s cover. …

“Founded in 1998 by visionary developer Ron Sher, Third Place Books got its name from sociologist Ray Oldenburg’s theory of the necessity of a third place; one that isn’t home or work but somewhere we can connect with a community. …

“While far from the oldest bookstore in Seattle, Third Place is the only one that in recent years has expanded to three locations, opening in the Ravenna neighborhood in 2002 and Seward Park in 2016. All offer a mix of new and used books, … a comfortable place for coffee or a meal, friendly booksellers eager to recommend a new favorite, a busy schedule of author readings and special events — in other words, offering not just books, but an experience. …

“In their three very different locations — a suburban shopping center north of Seattle; a quiet residential neighborhood near the University of Washington; a south Seattle neighborhood with one of the country’s most diverse ZIP codes — Third Place is offering ways to find community.

“Each store offers at least one book club; Seward Park, leading the pack, has five: Reading Through It: A Post-Election Book Club; Booze & Lasers (for science fiction/fantasy); Social Justice Syllabus; a teen book club; and a new Black Literature club, starting in January. Lake Forest Park’s three book groups include a general literary club, a nonfiction club and a Knitting Book Club (no, they don’t read books about knitting, but knit while they meet, discussing a variety of books).

“The Ravenna store takes advantage of its proximity to UW to present the monthly Black Jaw Literary Series, which features students and faculty members from the university’s creative-writing program. And it’s taken a creative approach to the author appearances that are the bread-and-butter of the bookstore business: Literary Luncheons. …

“Sometimes, creating community in a bookstore doesn’t involve books at all. Calendar events for the three stores include language conversation clubs, mahjong gatherings, live music (often at Third Place Commons, an open community space adjacent to but operated separately from the Lake Forest Park store) and Magic Mondays, a popular monthly demonstration by local magicians at Ravenna. …

“And the stores give back to the communities they serve, regularly supporting local schools. … Other charitable programs [include] single-day fundraisers — instigated by employees, and quickly organized. … The most recent [raised] money for legal services for refugees detained at the U.S.-Mexico border; business that day was up 75 percent.”

More.

A mother and son peruse a picture book at Third Place Books in Lake Forest Park, Washington. As traditional bookstores close, Third Place books has actually been expanding to new locations.

12182018_thirdplacebooks_124252-1020x680

Read Full Post »

A reason that poor children are sometimes unprepared for school is that the words they are starting to read in books may not convey meaning to them. What does it mean to park a car if you have never ridden in a car?

The NY Times has a lovely article about one NYC school’s unusual field trips, designed to fill some gaps in knowledge that textbook writers take for granted.

Michael Winerip writes, “Experiences that are routine in middle-class homes are not for P.S. 142 children. When Dao Krings, a second-grade teacher, asked her students recently how many had never been inside a car, several, including Tyler Rodriguez, raised their hands. ‘I’ve been inside a bus,’ Tyler said. ‘Does that count?’

“When a new shipment of books arrives, Rhonda Levy, the principal, frets. Reading with comprehension assumes a shared prior knowledge, and cars are not the only gap at P.S. 142. Many of the children have never been to a zoo or to New Jersey. Some think the emergency room of New York Downtown Hospital is the doctor’s office. …

“Working with Renée Dinnerstein, an early childhood specialist, [Ms. Levy] has made real life experiences the center of academic lessons, in hopes of improving reading and math skills by broadening children’s frames of reference.

“The goal is to make learning more fun for younger children. … While many schools have removed stations for play from kindergarten, Ms. Levy has added them in first and second grades. [And] several times a month they take what are known as field trips to the sidewalk. In early February the second graders went around the block to study Muni-Meters and parking signs. They learned new vocabulary words, like ‘parking,’ ‘violations’ and ‘bureau.’ JenLee Zhong calculated that if Ms. Krings put 50 cents in the Muni-Meter and could park for 10 minutes, for 40 minutes she would have to put in $2. They discovered that a sign that says ‘No Standing Any Time’ is not intended for kids like them on the sidewalk.” Read more.

One thinks of all the small daily interactions one has with one’s own children and the learning occurring without forethought. There are interactions and learning in poor families, too, but if the words and concepts are not what they kids will encounter in school, I think these excursions can be very helpful.

Photograph: Librado Romero, NY Times

Read Full Post »

I was reading about the latest enthusiastic group of LEAF interns in the Block Island Times tonight and decided to look up more information on the program.

The Leaders in Environmental Action for the Future (LEAF) program is an initiative started by the Nature Conservancy (TNC) 17 years ago. According to the TNC website, it “provides paid summer internships for high school students and helps educators from environmental high schools share best practices and scientific resources. The long-term goal of LEAF is to support more than 30 environmental high schools across the country, ultimately serving over 20,000 students.”

 

 

The Block Island Times notes that this is the third year of the island’s participation. The three girls who are currently interning have come with their mentor come from Atlanta. Intern Niniola Mark tells the newspaper, “This is my first time in New England, and I also saw the ocean for the very first time.” The article doesn’t say what high school the girls attend, but the only one in Georgia that I see on the TNC site is the Arabia Mountain High School.

What fun to go to an environmental high school!

Read Full Post »

%d bloggers like this: