You may know Chuck Pieri from seeing him around the branches or out in the community, usually wearing a silly hat. Or maybe you have enjoyed the Mr. Pieri Reads Aloud videos on YouTube or our Facebook page. Just who is Mr. Pieri and what does he do?
As Branch Young People’s Services Librarian, Chuck Pieri coordinates children’s and teen programming and collections at EPL’s four branches. But the part of his job he enjoys most is promoting the love of reading in the schools and the community.
During the school year he visits and reads to more than 1,000 kids in over 50 classrooms each month. “My ultimate goal,” says Chuck, “is to ignite a passion for reading in all the kids I meet, to help them become lifelong readers!”
Chuck is involved with two professional committees that promote reading for pleasure. The first is called the Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Award, which recognizes outstanding picture books that can be read by children and their caregivers. These titles emphasize at least three of the five Early Literacy practices: Talking, Singing, Reading, Writing and Playing. Chuck’s favorite from this year’s list is HOORAY FOR HAT by Brian Won.
“What’s fun about this award is that children, with the help of their caregivers, can vote for their favorite title from among the five nominees, then see which book wins when it’s announced in May. This encourages families to read and talk about books together!”
Chuck also chairs the AISLE Read Alouds-Too-Good-to-Miss Committee (Read Alouds for short). This committee consists of school librarians and children’s librarians from public libraries all over Indiana. Each year 50 books are chosen, and there are 10 titles in each of the five categories:
The books are chosen for their ability to instill a love of reading in students of all ages. See a more in-depth description here.
What Chuck especially likes about this committee is that not only are picture books featured, but novels and non-fiction titles as well. “With 50 titles to choose from, we hope that parents, educators and students can connect to books that will inspire and motivate them to enjoy the written and spoken word.”
Chuck loves his job and expressed great appreciation to EPL Director Lisa Guedea Carreño and to the Library Board for their continued encouragement and support of his work!