Beyond Books

You may be the type of person who enjoys browsing the bookshelves, looking for a book to add to the ever-growing stack on your nightstand. Or maybe you’re the academic type, looking for a quiet place to study for your AP chemistry test. You could even be the type of person who is just looking for a place where you can do a puzzle with your friends, compete in a scavenger hunt, or take a nap slumped over a table. Whatever type of person you are, the library is sure to have something to fit your needs.

Librarian Lisa Nguyen is determined to make the library a safe space where all students feel comfortable. Mrs. Nguyen has been a librarian in Katy ISD for 10 years, and it is currently her fifth year at Seven Lakes.

“What prompted me to become a librarian is that I remember how much I loved my elementary school librarian and all the fun things that she did in the library,” Mrs. Nguyen said. “It was always the highlight of my week when we got to go [to the library] and Ms. Daly, the librarian, she just made it fun for us. I always remembered that and then when I got my degree in education, I knew at some point I would be moving forward with [becoming a librarian].”

This year, it has been Mrs. Nguyen’s mission to bring more and more students into the library by hosting numerous activities and giving students more opportunities to explore the library they may not even know existed.

“What prompted all the new programming was I wanted students to know that the library was a place that they could come and engage with the activities that we had going on if they wanted to,” Mrs. Nguyen said. “And maybe the engagement was something silly like taking our weekly poll, or maybe it was something a little more involved like our trivia contests or interacting with a display. The idea is to get students in and to let them know that the library has a lot to offer.”

Some of the library’s new programming has included scavenger hunts, crafting opportunities such as card making and weaving friendship bracelets, as well as the time honored March Madness book bracket. 

“My favorite thing about the library is the games and activities that they provide,” sophomore Nishita Pattanaik said. “Like right now we have this like a trivia on the Library’s canvas page. If you [get the questions correct] you get treats.”

However, even with all the new activities, the library still remains a place where students can take a load off and immerse themselves in a good book.

“Like most people, I like how quiet [the library] is compared to the rest of the school and how you can sit freely and do whatever you like,” junior Amira Albar said. “It gives people [the chance] to come chill and it gives you something fun to do if you want a break from when you’re studying.”

For Mrs. Nguyen, nothing has been more rewarding than seeing students enjoy what the library has to offer and leave a bit happier than they were when they arrived.

“My favorite part [of the library] is the students,” Mrs. Nguyen said. “Of course I love helping the teachers as well, but I think students would definitely be what makes me happy and it serves as my pay day when we see students enjoying the library.”