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Indiana Daily Student

IU School of Education honors group holds annual book fair online due to COVID-19 pandemic

<p>A screen grab from the IU School of Education Book Fair site.</p>

A screen grab from the IU School of Education Book Fair site.

Despite the COVID-19 pandemic making most events virtual, the School of Education's honor society still held its annual book fair. 

The Kappa Delta Pi honor society did the book fair virtually from Nov. 1 to Nov. 14.

Clara Valentine, secretary of the organization, said getting the word out was more difficult than usual. 

“Usually we get foot traffic through the building and people will be like, ‘Oh my gosh, the Scholastic Book Fair! We had those when we were kids,’" Valentine said. "Virtually, it really relied on our members to spread the website link and the word around.”

Outreach coordinator Katie McGraw said a virtual book fair looks a lot different than an in-person one, but Scholastic helped with resources for the fair such as providing a designated sales link for books.

“People went on the Scholastic website and ordered the books on there,” McGraw said. “We tried to do a lot of promotion through social media, and Scholastic even had a little trailer that we could post on our Facebook page.”

President Casey Weisner said the Book Fair turnout was not as high as previous years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but the organization did its best given the circumstances. 

“As of right now, we’re going to try to do the Scholastic Book Fair again next semester,” Weisner said. “We don’t have things figured out just yet because that’s still next semester, but we would really like to do it again. We would like a better turnout next semester so we can have more funds to get more books for kids in the community.” 

McGraw also said the turnout was lower due to COVID-19, noting that many people are short on funds right now. However, she said this was a helpful experience for future book fairs. 

“The virtual book fair was an interesting experiment, as a lot of things are with COVID," McGraw said. "Maybe we can consider doing a virtual fair in the future as well as an in-person fair because some people can’t always come out to the School of Ed and we can send them a link instead.”

With the funds raised at the Scholastic Book Fair, Kappa Delta Pi buys books for their spring literacy fair, Literacy Alive. At the event, Kappa Delta Pi gives out the books they purchased to the children who attend the fair in a free gift bag, McGraw said.

Weisner said Literacy Alive usually partners with a Monroe County School Corporation school, and there are games, events and books that promote literacy and a passion for reading while giving back to the community. They do not have a current plan for Literacy Alive yet.

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