The Ottumwa Courier

Community News Network

January 8, 2013

New youth librarian ‘always been an avid reader’

OSKALOOSA — Liz Anderson, 24, recently signed on as youth librarian with the Oskaloosa Public Library.

Anderson majored in English at Kenyon College, a small liberal arts college in Ohio.

She would later earn her Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Pittsburgh. There she specialized in childrens and youth services.

“I’d always been a really avid reader when I was a kid,” said Anderson, noting that she bonded with a lot of her childhood friends over books.

During her senior year at Kenyon College, Anderson said she read a few blogs and had a conversation with a friend, which made her realize she’d like to pursue a career as a youth librarian. Anderson noted that she’d always loved books written for children and teens. After graduation from Kenyon College, Anderson said she began volunteering in the children’s section of the library in Northfield, Minn., where her parents live.

Although it was still her first day on the job on Monday, Anderson said she’d really enjoyed getting to know the Oskaloosa Public Library staff and the library’s collection. Anderson added, she’s eager to work with library patrons, as well.

Beginning Jan. 15, children’s programming, which will be led by Anderson, will resume at the Oskaloosa Public Library. Anderson said children will read books as a group, sing songs, play games and have other opportunities interact with one another at the library.

“It’s good for kids to get the chance to discover new books and interact with each other because that’s an important skill that young kids need to develop,” said Anderson.

Anderson said reading is a major building block for success. She explained that it’s an important skill not only in school, but for one’s entire life.

“I think that bringing kids to the library teaches them how to get on a regular reading routine,” explained Anderson. “It shows them this is a place where you can come and you can discover new books.”

Children also have the opportunity to play, listen to music and socialize with each other at the library, said Anderson, noting that bringing a child to the library is a part of the overall healthy development of a child.

When it comes to her personal tastes, Anderson said two of her favorite books of all time are “Matilda,” by Roald Dahl, and “Pride and Prejudice,” by Jane Austen.

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