Lower School Library

240 McClellan Road

The Lower School Library contains more than 25,000 volumes of books and media and serves pre-school through fifth grade. All classes have a scheduled library period each week. The library also is open to all students every morning from 8–8:30 a.m. and every afternoon from 2:30-3:30 p.m.


Lower School Celebrates Children’s Book Week

The Lower School celebrated Children’s Book Week from May 2-6. They began with a visit from author Allison Lassieur, a USJ parent who lives in Trenton. Allison, who has written over 130 books since 1997, was formerly an editor at Highlights magazine and Disney Adventures magazine. Over a two-day span, she spoke with each 1-5 grade class, sharing with them from her You Choose series. These books focus on a historical event or era and provide readers with choices to decide how the story plays out.

“I don’t call it ‘writing,’ ” says Allison. “I consider it ‘building.’ I make paths, like with a flow chart, and then go from there.”

The series, which includes 20 or so books, center on a fictional character in a nonfiction situation. Allison shared her Titanic book with classes, giving the students the opportunity to interact and determine the flow of the story. She is currently working on a book about spies in World War I while doing research on her next You Choose book, which is focused on the haunted Stanley Hotel in Colorado.

Children’s Book Week festivities continued with a first grade vocabulary parade on Wednesday. This day was also Poem in Your Pocket Day. Students, who have been reading and even writing poetry, were encouraged to wear clothing with many pockets to keep a poem or two on them for sharing throughout the day. Pockets were also spread throughout the school, filled with poems for students to read.

The fun continued throughout the week with the annual fourth grade Spelling Bee and a whole school read-in on Friday, in which all students enjoyed 30 minute of reading for pleasure.

“I felt like it was Christmas morning when I got up today,” said Lower School Librarian Mimi Hirstein at the start of the week. “I absolutely could not wait to see the children’s faces when they saw all of the decorations and activities we had planned. Nothing brings me more pleasure than watching a child engage with a book!”