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Fund Helps Libraries Purchase Social-Emotional Learning Books

Each year, one of the school libraries in the Grand Island Central School District receives a donation of $500 from the Leslie R. Morris Memorial Philanthropic Fund. The fund was established by Dr. Sharon Cramer in 2010 to honor the memory of her late husband. Mr. Morris was a long-time Grand Island resident who was a voracious reader, librarian and book lover. Over the last decade, the funds have been used to purchase books about several topics like history, geography, animals, sports and biographies. The libraries are thankful to be the recipients of this generous donation.

Given the unusual nature of this school year, the annual donation is being shared between all five libraries. Each school library received $100 to add materials that support social-emotional learning for students, faculty, and families. At the secondary level, books that were purchased include topics that address developing coping skills and resilience in challenging times. Other materials include books that illuminate societal tensions. At the elementary level, books that were purchased include picture books that promote empathy, compassion and kindness. Teachers will use these materials to connect with students and help them to share their feelings and emotions.

Stories are a powerful way to connect students to their feelings while encouraging them to discover the power within themselves. These resources purchased through the Leslie Morris Book Project will provide an opportunity for teachers to foster positive learning environments and respond to students' concerns during these challenging times.

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Above: A few of the social-emotional learning picture books purchased through the fund are on display.