a little about me...
Hi! I’m Leigh! Like Charlie Brown, I love getting mail! If you have a question or comment or just want to say hi, please feel free to email or contact me using the contact form below. I check email daily and try to respond within a day or two.
Hello there! My name is Leigh (like “Lee”) Collazo, and I love being a librarian and teacher!
I am a Texas-certified PreK-12 school librarian and secondary English teacher. Since 2001, I’ve served school communities at all grade levels, both in Texas and in Shanghai and Suzhou, China. We lived in China for six years and hoped to stay there for at least another year. Unfortunately, when we came to Mexico for Chinese New Year vacation in January 2020, we ended up unable to return to China for months due to the pandemic. China has since opened its borders, but we fell in love with Mexico and decided we would not return to China. We applied for Mexican residency (a super-slow process!) and as of April 2021, we are…
Still processing! Resident visas don’t happen overnight, y’all!
In China, I served as Head Librarian and Secondary School Librarian at two different private international schools. Both schools were very different from one another, and both were awesome learning experiences. Serving a community of “third culture” kids from 55 different countries and languages was challenging, rewarding, and fun! If you’ve ever considered teaching or librarian-ing internationally, I encourage you to check into it! I am happy to help point you in the right direction and answer any questions you might have–feel free to send me a message!
Prior to my China schools, I was a middle school librarian in Texas. I opened three brand-new school libraries in the Fort Worth area: two elementaries and one middle school. I presented booktalks at our regional service center in Texas (LOVE that!) and at several library PD events in Shanghai. I was also a book reviewer for School Library Journal from 2012-2017. Before becoming a librarian, I taught 7th grade English and Literature in Fort Worth for three years.
Librarians have the best job in the school, and boy, do we know it!
BOOK REVIEWS AND IDEAS
I started this blog in 2011 simply because I love reading and reviewing books. Initially, all my posts were book reviews and thematic booklists. While I do still write book reviews, I have gradually switched my focus from book reviews to lesson ideas and management tips for librarians and classroom teachers. Professional book reviews are widely available, but there is a huge need for librarians to share ideas with one another. New librarians are especially “on their own” in their schools, and many new librarians look to websites like this one for ideas, direction, and a much- needed sense of community. I am honored to be a part of that community and encourage all librarians to reach out and help one another.
WHERE DID MY NAME COME FROM?
I get lots of comments on my blog name. My now-14-year old son, lover of all things silly, is largely responsible for my name. When he was three years old, he called me a “ReaderPants” because I read so much. At the time, I was considering starting a blog and trying to think of a blog name. I thought it was perfect!