Tuesday, January 23, 2007

Literature inspiring research

I have been enjoying a few days at a local high school library doing research with 12 graders on "social issues." The kids are so nice and the library has a terrific collection. No matter how obscure the topic, the collection has material to match every query, it seems. It makes me feel like such a reference librarian again.

One funny moment today: As the kids filed in to the library, one girl stopped to grab the book Pretties by Scott Westerfeld from a book display. She was so happy to have the book that she hugged it; she had been waiting a long time for the book to come in she told me.

The kids had to clear their research topic with their teacher before starting work. Coming up with a topic was the focus of the day's library visit. My Westerfeld fan told the teacher that she wanted to do a research paper about parasites.

Hmmm...this is not a science class.
Her teacher, looking puzzled, asked her what kind of social issue involved parasites.

On a hunch, having just witnessed her enthusiasm for all things Westerfeld, I asked her, "Have you been reading Peeps?"

"YESSSSSSS, she exclaimed, digging a copy of the book out of her backpack.
”Now I want to study parasites."

The teacher was completely befuddled so I explained the premise of the story (parasites cause the myth/idea of vampires.) The teacher was giving us both the oddest look.

I think the student is going to do something about clean water resources (and no doubt, how bad water with PARASITES can cause health issues.)


Little Willow said...

That is fantastic! You must share that with Scott Westerfeld.

May PEEPS do for the field of parasite study what CSI did for the field of crime scene investigation: inspire this generation, and the next generation!

Camille said...

I thought it was hilarious. She was so thrilled someone knew about Peeps! I didn't get a chance to check back with her yesterday because I was helping another class with their research.