SOLON– Building castles out of Legos® isn’t a typical activity during most everyone’s workday, but for Solon Public Library’s children services librarian, Carey Major, it’s part of the normal job description. Major spends many of her days telling story-time to preschoolers, creating finger plays, interacting with students of all ages, and building Lego® creations.
“Basically my job is to make a fool of myself, and I love it,” Major said with a chuckle.
Major is no fool. She is pursuing a master’s degree in library science, and has a bachelor’s degree in history. Library director Kris Brown said Major fit the bill for all the needs drawn up by the hiring committee. Now, Major is simply trying to pass onto kids the same passion for books and literature that was instilled in her by a hometown librarian years ago. She believes reading is a crucial piece to a child’s success in education.
“Reading creates imagination. It helps eye-hand coordination. It helps so many different aspects of a kid’s learning that it’s almost hard to explain all that it can do,” Major said.
Through programs such as the Lego® Club, which meets the first Monday of the month, Major can encourage students to think creatively, and to express imagination. While an adult may see the Lego® creations as little plastic castles, Major said the children see entire worlds they’ve built out of limitless imagination. It’s is a great way for children to have fun at the library.
“I love it, and I’m an adult,” Major said.
She said she feels privileged to play the significant role in children’s lives that promotes the love of literature, and the love of learning. In Major’s childhood, all it took was one thoughtful book recommendation by her librarian, and she became a lover of reading. The book was “The Outsiders” by S.E. Hinton, and Major hopes she can help instill that same passion to students here in Solon.
“When you’re in a position to help kids find what they love,” she said, “you have a pretty awesome privilege.”
Major is originally from South Bend, Ind., where her parents worked at the Notre Dame University. She worked for 11 years at a South Bend Barnes & Noble, before pursuing a master’s degree and moving to Iowa. She lives in Cedar Rapids, but said she loves to work in the tight-knit community of Solon.
“A place like Solon, you can tell that they care about the library,” Major said. “They care about being a community, and that’s really something amazing.”
She added that the Solon community has been active in helping the library by supporting its programming. When the library needed Legos® for Lego® Club, dozens of community members donated their share to the cause.
“Everyone here works together,” she said. “If you need something here, somebody in Solon will try their hardest to help you, and that’s rare.”