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Library Beginnings



Library Beginnings
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 4 to 5
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   6.04

Vocabulary
     challenging words:    filing, hand-copied, papyrus, beginning, volume, especially, public, bears, scroll, establish, press, copy, perhaps, from, offer, history
     content words:    Early Middle Ages, John Harvard, Ben Franklin, American Civil War, Melvil Dewey, Dewey Decimal System


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Library Beginnings
By Mary Lynn Bushong
  

1     From the beginning of time, people have collected their stories. At first, they were not written down. They had to be memorized and passed on from one person to another by word of mouth.
 
2     When people learned to read and write, they were better able to collect stories. The first words were not printed on paper. The Sumerians pressed symbols into clay tablets. They were not very easy to move around because they were heavy.
 
3     Can you imagine trying to read a book like that? Instead of keeping the clay tablets on shelves, they were kept in baskets.
 
4     The Egyptians wrote their ideas on paper made from papyrus reeds. These scrolls were not available to average people.
 
5     The Greeks loved learning. They made a huge library at the city of Alexandria, in Egypt. They wanted to have at least one copy of every scroll ever written kept there. The library was eventually burned down, and most of the scrolls were lost.

Paragraphs 6 to 13:
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