The Winners of the BTS Giveaway

by Rachel Baker on September 14, 2009

When I first posted the Back to School Giveaway I wasn’t sure what I was looking for in the comments to determine the winners.  See, I know its “proper” to use a random generator for picking winners of online characters, so no one can accuse you of bias, but I just don’t really like them.  Why read any of the fabulous comments if you don’t have to pick a winner?  And for me, the comments are one of the best parts of running a giveaway.

Its not that I’m picking people who could most use the books I’ve been given the opportunity to giveaway.  Instead its figuring out the best homes for these books.  In the case of this particular set, I wanted these books to have the opportunity to touch as many lives as possible. 

Before I tell you why I picked the winners I did, I want to say one more thing: if you are looking for something altruistic to do in your community, don’t forget your teachers and your librarians.  If you have a ton of books that you have been wondering if you should donate somewhere – start with your local library.  If you are looking for a way to help children get a better education, talk to a teacher and see if they need help with classroom supplies, or volunteer your time at a local school. And one other idea, the front office at any school can tell you if there are any underprivileged students that need some help with their own personal school supplies, donate to a child in need.  Just having school supplies can make a big difference in a child’s life.

That said, here’s my thought process for picking the winners of these books.  I am sure you all can agree the possibility of these books touching many lives is greatest with these winners.

Aliya is doing some volunteer teaching.  This, to me, means she is either in the process of getting a degree in Education or simply volunteering her time to help kids in her area get an education.  Or both.  There’s not a lot of money in teaching as we all know, so, anything to help her out is a worthy investment – I can’t give you teaching supplies to help out in the classroom, but I can give you some books that may assist you in your teaching endeavors.

Aliya D – I’d love to win those books, they sound like fascinating reads and quite informative (I’m sure they’d be useful towards my volunteer teaching)… Please accept this as my entry. Thank you!

Pat is a member of a women’s group that helps support after-school programs by providing classroom supplies.  Not only is she helping out the kids by providing the items that may be lacking, but she’s helping out teachers (who we know don’t make a whole lot of money).  In several places around our country, teachers have to buy their own classroom supplies.  This is one way that people can help support education and the teachers in their area.

Pat – Sound like some good titles that the teachers in the after-school program that my women’s group supports with classroom supplies

Gracie and Lanham are librarians.  I don’t think we give enough kudos to our local librarians – in the school system or in our county and city libraries. I suspect one of the first budget cuts in any jurisdiction, is in the area of our country’s libraries.  I get upset when I hear of new budget cuts to libraries because to me that means less books are available for people to nurture a love of reading.  And while I realize there’s so much more to life than just reading a book, there are moments in life, when reading a good book can set the world right again.

So, while I’m not sure if these books are/will be beneficial to high school students, I do believe having as many books as possible in a library is a good thing and I think Gracie is doing a great untraditional thing to ioncrease her school library’s inventory when funding is low.

gracie johnson – these sound like great books, I work in a high school library and our funding is low, it would be great if we could add these titles to our library.

Now, Lanham is a librarian at an inner city library.  Wanting to give books to five of the library’s families is a wonderful endeavor.  Not only does it encourage members of the families to continue reading, but it will also instill a love of the library for years to come. In fact, I wish I could give you 10K books to give out to your families, to help you develop a love of reading in families that may not ever have an opportunity to develop this on their own.

lanham bundy – As a librarian at an inner city library, I’d love to get these to give to 5 of our families with newly enthusiastic readers to encourage their continued reading.

And this brings us to Laura.  Just from her comment, I’m not sure if she’s a parent, a teacher or a librarian (or a combination).  I believe she is or was a teacher. She poetically described the first day of school perfectly, from a teacher’s standpoint.  In fact, I think we’ve all seen the look on a teacher’s face the first day of school, where we knew they were just as excited as we were (as students) to be back.

laura – The start of school year.
Children leaping from the stair of the school bus and racing to the new classroom door. Loud sound fill the halls with a mix of laughter, book bags landing next to the desk as they are tossed aside and the ongoing chattering. The teacher positioned in the front of the room looks around surveying the mix of eager students. With a smile on her face, “This is going to be a good year.”

Thank you to everyone who participated in the contest.  I always say this and mean it from the bottom of my heart, I wish I could give everyone of you a set of these books.

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