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From left to right: Fifth-grader Karlee Sumner, librarian Cindy Smedley, fourth-grader Anastasia Anderson and Maureen Williams from the Umpqua Gem and Minerals Club with books donated by the club.

Eleven new geology and Earth science books have been added to the new Lookingglass Elementary School Library after a donation from the Umpqua Gem and Mineral Club on Tuesday.

“They fight over these (books) a lot, especially the fossils and the rocks and minerals, they just love those,” said librarian Cindy Smedley. “They are going to be really popular.”

When the historic building housing the gym, library and cafeteria was lost to a two-alarm fire in December 2016, the school lost 8,000 books. Thanks to work by Smedley, numerous volunteers and donations from local organizations, the new library has been replenished.

According to Sue Woodman, who has been coordinating the book donations for the past nine years, the club has donated books to different Douglas County schools since 1997. They began by donating a couple hundred dollars worth; last year the club spent over $1,800.

“The county has been divided into four areas, so schools will get new books every four years,” Woodman explained.

Lookingglass was not originally on the list for this year’s donation, but the club’s board of directors decided to authorize the unscheduled donation since the school’s library had been destroyed.

This is the club’s second donation since the fire.

“There is a focus on science in the new adopted curriculum, like the reading curriculum — we adopted ‘Wonders’ a couple years ago. A lot of the stories are no longer fictional,” said Lookingglass Elementary School Principal Oriole Inkster. “You’re reading for information. Science and social studies are the primary core of your reading program now.”

Nine other schools in the Glide, Yoncalla, Drain and Elkton areas also received book donations this year.

Erica Welch is the special sections editor for The News-Review. She can be reached at ewelch@nrtoday.com. or 541-957-4218.

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Community Reporter

Erica Welch is the special sections editor for The News-Review, mother of two and a native Roseburgian. She is an alumni of Roseburg High School, UCC and Western Oregon University. She can be reached at ewelch@nrtoday.com or 541-957-4218.

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