Welcome to the Milton Frye Library of the Marion Cross School

Joy Blongewicz, Teacher Librarian
email: joy.blongewicz@marioncross.org
phone: 802-649-1703 Ext. 208

Online Catalog - click here

Student, Teacher, Parent Resources - click here

The Marion Cross School Library strives to provide appropriate materials to support the school's curriculum as well as to provide a wide variety of reading materials for students at all reading levels, and with varying interests.

Library instruction lessons teach students the necessary skills to be able to access and evaluate information. Students are taught research skills and how to use a variety of print and non-print resources. Student-centered projects focus on problem solving, critical thinking, collaboration and presentation. Web 2.0 technology tools are incorporated when appropriate.

Milton Frye Library History

Our library is named to honor Milton Frye, our school principal from 1973 to 1996, whose foresight and support enabled the library to evolve into a superb elementary school resource center for the 21st century. The collection numbers about 16,000 volumes including picture books, fiction, folklore, mythology, poetry, biography, informational books, DVD's, and student, teacher and parent reference materials. It was developed to promote our library goals which are to foster a love for reading and to teach the use of information tools and resources.

Dr. Fran Nye is one of the library’s original “founding mothers”. In 1960 there was no school library. As part of the Norwich Women’s Club, Dr. Nye and several other mothers set up a cart in the principal’s office to be the first library. The Women’s Club organized the first book sale to raise money to buy books to expand the library. (For many years, the book sales were the only source of funds for purchasing library books.) As the number of books outgrew their space and the Dresden Compact was established so that the Norwich seventh and eighth graders went to school in Hanover, the upstairs of the 1898 building was available for a library space. Dr. Nye’s husband, Bob, built the shelves for the library. The same shelves that house our non-fiction collection today. Dr. Nye was one of the mothers who operated the library on weekday afternoons.

Dr. Nye’s favorite children’s book is The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett. She reads it every spring. Perhaps because of her work as a psychiatrist, Dr. Nye is repeatedly touched by the little girl who makes people well through the power of nature. Freckles by Gene Stratton Porter and The Enormous Egg by Oliver Butterworth are two other books the Dr. Nye loves and recommends.


Battle of the Books

What is the Battle of the Books?
This is a fun and optional reading promotion program for students in 4th and 5th grade. Students form teams of 2 or 3 members. Collectively, each team reads the books from the list that is developed by Joy Blongewicz, librarian. Students will have approximately seven months to read from the list. On the day of the ‘The Book Battle’ teams will participate in a Jeopardy-style format to see who can score the most points, earned by correctly answering the oral questions. The questions will focus on: setting, plot, character, genre and tricky question. Additionally, the 'Bonus Round' enables one team at a time to answer a given question.

How are the Books Chosen?
Some of the books are chosen from the current DCF list, from Newbery award winners and from a multicultural list. The other books are chosen with thought given towards books that represent quality reading as well as a variety of genres and reading levels.

Here is a list of the Battle of the Books for 2016 - 2017.


Celebration Books

The Marion Cross School PTO sponsors a Celebration Book Program at the school library. Each year families purchase books for the library in honor of their child, a significant person or an event such as a birthday or holiday. Each book given receives a bookplate inscribed with the child’s name (or other special person) and date of the event being recognized. Since the program’s inception in March 1994, over 1,500 books have been added to the collection.

During the month of the child’s celebration, he or she will be called to the library to select a Celebration Book. A parent volunteer will help each child in the selection of his or her book and will inform families of their child’s selection. Children who would like to mark their summer birthdays choose books during their half-birthday month. The books offered have been pre-selected by librarian, Joy Blongewicz. If a child has a specific book request or a parent would like to purchase a book for the library, families should contact Mrs. Blongewicz at the library.

Through the generosity of the Norwich Bookstore we are able to acquire books for the library at a 20% discount, passing on the profit to the Celebration Book Program fund. Click here to download a Celebration Books order form.

Click here to download a Celebration Books order form.



Marion Cross School
22 Church St. | Norwich, VT 05055
phone 802-649-1703 | fax 802-649-3640

Updated 08/29/16