Third-grader Kelsie Caston collected 1418 books, while learning about reaching out and following through after her English language arts teacher at Maplebrook Elementary assigned a class project involving research about something the students were passionate about. After researching Hurricane Harvey flooding and learning that the Friends of the Library, Kingwood Used Bookstore lost all their books, Kelsie, who loves to read, decided that for her project she would hold a book drive to collect books for them.


She started out by visiting with her school principal to get permission to do a school-wide book drive. She then wrote announcements for the school website, created posters and flyers, and put out six plastic tubs in a hallway for grades pre-K through fifth.

She kept a running count of books collected and a competition ensued among the grade levels to see which grade could bring in the most books. As a tub got filled, she placed another tub on top, so it was obvious which grade was winning. In the end the first grade won, beating the fifth grade by 13 books.

Kelsie, with help from her parents, Amy and Russell Caston, hauled the 1418 books to the FOLK online center for storage until the library was able to open. FOLK board member Connie Jaeger has been busy sorting through the books for display and sale in the used bookstore, which opened May 29.

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