On 3-4 July 2019, Jiroft in Kerman Province, experienced the opening ceremony of three school libraries with the cooperation of Education Office experts and Jiroft City Hall authorities.
Mozhdeh Palashi, an active Read with Me teacher in Houkerd village was the trigger for establishing these libraries. Through her creative book-related activities, she exuded joy and cheerfulness among the children of her village. Due to her outstanding performance, Read with Me experts sent her a Book Backpack containing 40 books for Reading Aloud purposes. They encouraged her to hold Reading Aloud sessions for children other than her own students. And so she did. With her Book Backpack on her back, she travelled to nearby villages, cities and districts to read to children every chance she got. She is now a Read with Me ambassador.
Encouraged by Mozhdeh’s activities, other teachers started implementing the Read with Me program in their classrooms with more enthusiasm. This led to the formation of a group for reading promotion in Jiroft. Teachers and tutors from Jiroft and several nearby villages travelled to Houkerd. They borrowed Book Bags to hold Reading Aloud sessions for children in schools, mosques, districts and basically any other place they could gather children around and motivate them to read.
Children showed great interest and teachers, great promise. Therefore, the Institute for Research on the History of Children’s Literature, decided to establish three school libraries in Jiroft and nearby villages. Everything prepared instantly. From books and library resources to cushions and drapes. Teachers and students prepared themselves for trips to the land of stories as well. Their endeavors resulted in establishing “Bagh-e Setareha” in Houkerd village, “Laleh” in AliAbad village and “Khaney-e Madar” in Jiroft. Following the opening ceremonies, teachers and reading promoters participated in Read with Me workshops on child-centered libraries.
These libraries have been equipped with more than 1000 books and activity sheets along with Read with Me Library Design packages. Children’s needs, their interest levels and the accessibility of books have been considered in the library designs.
A pictorial report of the opening ceremonies: