Federal Librarian Winter 2009
Veteran’s Day Storytime at Kadena AB Library, Okinawa, Japan
November 10, 2008, the Kadena Base Library presented a special pajama story time on the eve of Veteran’s Day, which was observed the following day as a national holiday. Kadena Elementary School Literacy Facilitator, Dr. Suzanne Landrum, presented a series of stories with the theme of how one can serve one’s country by joining the armed services, and reinforced the stories with additional activities. In addition to books, she had the 14 participants, age 4-11, call off appropriate words for each letter of the alphabet to describe America’s warriors, as she wrote them on a flip chart set up on an easel. An American flag was borrowed to recite the Pledge of Allegiance. A children’s white table was set up to represent the table reserved for MIAs found in many mess halls, and Dr. Landrum read the story, America’s White Table to the children. She also had four U.S. Veterans speak to the children about their experiences with the military. Patriotic candy canes and cookies were given out at the end of the program, which lasted 70 minutes. In the photograph, Dr. Landrum poses with U.S. Veterans who came to talk to the children about their military service. The fourteen children who attended the story time learned the true meaning of Veteran’s Day thanks to Dr. Landrum’s stories, activities, and guests who gave generously of their time. It was an innovative program that made for a memorable evening!