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Mom questions how to 'fix' Scholastic book fairs displaying more 'junk' than books

A frustrated mom asks the internet how to contact the Scholastic book fair to ensure they stop sending ‘junk’ and instead get some real books.

Mom questions how to 'fix' Scholastic book fairs displaying more 'junk' than books
Cover Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh

Books are a human’s best friend and reading habits are best when instilled at a young age to create a healthy and curious mind. Similarly, book fairs are a haven for these inquisitive minds. We all remember the exciting days of school when a Scholastic book fair was organized, which used to be the highlight of the week. The flyers would be distributed to the students days in advance and children would get excited about picking their choice of books and adding it to their list to get approved by parents. It is what we remember our Scholastic books fairs as, but recently, as pointed out by Sarah—who goes by @sarahmakesmelaugh on TikTok—about her child’s Scholastic book fair, things definitely seemed to have changed now. She shared her experience of the Scholastic book fair and what she thought about the quality of the books and other ‘junk’ that was up for sale.

Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh
Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh

While putting on a lip balm, Sarah began, “I volunteered at my kid’s book fair today, which was really fun. I was there all day helping the kids make their wishlist.” Soon, she jumped into the lead of her video, holding her head and saying, “How do we get in touch with Scholastic to tell them we don’t want them to send all the junk at the book fair?” A bit wide-eyed, Sarah continued sharing her complaint, “Every parent volunteer, every teacher was like, ‘We have to put real books down, we have to have books from the books fair.’”

Sarah thought back to when she was a kid and recalled, “Did we have this when we were kids? I don’t remember. I remember posters, I remember pencils and maybe bookmarks. I don’t remember squishy pens, fifty thousand fuzzy journals, or a Lego mini-figure little activity book. Every non-reading giant display of junk that I don’t want in my house. My kids don’t need it.”

Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh
Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh

She then continued, “If they just have books, they’ll get books. I don’t understand. I’d help the kids and they’d be looking at the books and then they would go and they would see something that wasn’t a book and then that’s all they wanted to get.” Sarah’s concern as a mother is justified because book fairs are supposed to be mainly about good reading material that can help kids develop reading habits. However, if the majority of the products are accessories to book reading or stationary items, then children are quick to lose focus and demand those instead.

Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh
Image Source: TikTok | @sarahmakesmelaugh

Sarah then questioned her viewers about the steps to improve the book’s fair quality. She asked if she should put out a “petition,” “could schools choose not to show it” or whether it “was a part of the deal” with Scholastic to display it all. She finally concluded by saying, “How do we fix this? Because I do not need to spend $14.99 on a fuzzy journal at the book fair. I don’t want it in my life.”

Image Source: TikTok | @pfeiferpfour
Image Source: TikTok | @pfeiferpfour

Sarah’s concern resonated with many TikTok viewers who felt the same and expressed it in the comment section as well. User @larissapaxton recommended, “My school switched to Literati for this reason! Prices are good and they don’t send a lot of junk!” Another user, @kelseyrank, advised, “You can just not put the junk out! My school only puts the junk out in the evenings when parents come with their kids to the book fair.”

Image Source: TikTok | @mmirvance
Image Source: TikTok | @mmirvance

While some TikTok users felt that buying junk is also an essential part of book fairs, it does seem debatable whether a book fair should stand for ‘stationary fair’ instead if its main focus isn’t on books.

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