We all have to start somewhere. Students enrolled in Library Sciences, Document Technology and even Records Management are called upon to complete a period of internship. It allows us/them to put into practice what is learned in the classroom. The following is a blog prepared by such an intern at my high school library when asked to describe her expectations as an intern or “stagière”. Do you remember your internship days?
As a librarian, have you ever asked yourself what impact you want to have on your patrons? On your students? What role does the library have in your community? Do teenagers care? There are so many questions that have to be answered! Whether you are a solo librarian or work in a team, you have to plan and think ahead as you go.
Nowadays, some people consider that libraries are outdated and have no useful purpose…Is that today’s reality? Absolutely not! Especially when your space is equipped with sofas and digital tools. It all depends on the kind of librarian YOU want to be, and what YOU want your community to learn from your library. You must think about what your patrons want and what their needs are. Make it appealing to them, so that they see the real purpose of the library and like coming there.
Most people feel confident about their way of finding information, but they just might not realize yet that there is just so much more to it! This is where we, librarians, come into play. Why not help and encourage them to expand their searches beyond Google? Show them that the library is a safe place, where they are free to ask questions, learn, and explore. School librarians; let’s not forget that teachers also play an important role in helping the students to use the resources available.
A good sense of humour goes a long way when dealing with teenagers and their never-ending quest to challenge the adults around them!
Submitted by T.P., stagière @ PCHS and C.A. Case from PCHS
I remember the words of a teacher of mine encouraging the class to “never under-estimate the power of networking.” It’s really just another way of communicating and sharing knowledge. The business world has its power lunches. Librarians have symposiums, conferences and webinars to name a few useful ways to network. I have been trying to combine the two with interesting results.
At a recent lunch with a math colleague, we got to talking about some of our favourite online tools and how we could help each other to spread the word. A great find should always be shared! I will now regularly ask the rest of our staff to make suggestions. The best ones will be added to the Library webpage as “useful links“ such as this one. I can think of so many students who will love to learn more about math at the library while exploring Desmos!
Desmos a free online tool that works as it was meant to and more. Basically, we are talking about a free, online graphing calculator. You can find the calculator here:
Desmos is so much more than just a calculator. It allows you to explore “beautiful, free math.“ Set up an account and get started! Many sites provide classroom activities.
Ideas for Creative Art (like this picture) by Sean Grecco
Many YouTube videos like this one which shows the Desmos iPad app.
Free ChromeBook App is available here
If your students are not sure where to start, why not let them try Des-Man – the new face of graphing?
Desmos is a great tool to help change the Library into a Learning Commons. Math teachers may lend a hand at lunchtime!
Submitted by C.A. Case from PCHS
Check out why Librarians are awesome!
5 Reasons to Love Your Librarian
Submitted by CA Case from PCHS
Last week I was asked the most difficult Reference question of all: ‘Miss, what do you really do all day?’ I wanted to snap back ‘I’m a high school librarian; what don’t I do? I DO collection development, processing, budgeting, cataloguing, indexing, reference, research instruction, circulation, public relations, you name it, I do it all!’
But I didn’t say any of that, because I knew this 17-year old student couldn’t care less. But it got me thinking. What do I really do?
I hand out band-aids. I give kids high-fives and hugs. I have a never-ending parade of students coming for tea or coffee, and going back to class with a mug with a library message on it, including but not limited to: Read! Read Local! and Reading is Sexy! I have a library-sloth who comforts people. I insult and mock kids, challenging them to think about the words that come out of their mouths (pet peeve: ‘can I?’ instead of ‘may I?’). I also apologise when I am wrong or have offended someone. I say good morning to everyone, and wish them a good day (even when I don’t mean it). I demand that students use their brains even on their lunch break. I am offended when they call me a teacher, because I am not a teacher: I am a librarian!
And that’s what I do all day!
Submitted by Andrea Hyde from BHS
A very interesting read from the 21st Century Library Blog. Take a few minutes to check it out!
I was forwarded a very interesting article the other day.
by Carl Straumshein on Inside Higher Ed.
Several library directors at liberal arts institutions have lost their jobs as they clash with faculty and administrators over how much — and how fast — the academic library should change.
None of the dismissals, resignations or retirements are identical. Some have resulted from arguments over funding; others from debates about decision-making processes or ongoing personal strife. One common trend, however, is that several of the library directors who have left their jobs in recent years have done so after long-term disputes with other groups on campus about how the academic library should change to better serve students and faculty.
This is nothing new or revolutionary on its own. We have seen administrators and constituents disagree on vision, direction, or organizational mission and have a parting of the ways…
View original post 1,497 more words
High school librarians tend to look at August or September as the designated start of the new year – the new academic year that is. It’s the time for planning and dreaming about goals for our students and our libraries. It makes perfect sense, right?
However, nothing really stops us for establishing a few resolutions in January. They don’t have to be complicated, difficult to achieve or unattainable. In fact, we can build on ideas provided by popular fashion or design magazines always trendy with our teens! In order to be effective, library resolutions should be positive, uplifting and lead to a real sense of accomplishment. Don’t establish a lengthy list. Be realistic. Keep it simple.
Here are five suggestions:
1. Review September’s Goals
Three months have elapsed since the beginning of the academic year. If you are not on track with those goals – get on it or make new ones!
2. Lose the Dead Weight
Otherwise known as weeding. Like shedding some pounds, no one really likes to do this. In the age of 21st century libraries, encyclopedias are being replaced by online versions that are often updated daily. The same applies to dictionaries. Non-fiction books can always get a thorough clean-up, so rid yourself of the excess baggage. It has already served its purpose. Students are more likely to access the Internet for non-fiction information. There are great resources available to librarians on where to start weeding non-fiction sections (http://www.librarygirl.net/2013/10/keeping-your-library-collection.html ).The bonus is that new-found shelf space. And you’ll have materials for those book crafts you want to try out in your Makerspace!
3. Clutter No More
Sometimes less is more. At one time, there never seemed to be enough tables arranged in orderly rows. Today’s teens need room for collaborative work. They create and communicate in clusters. They like to lean on counters! Keeping your floor plan flexible allows everyone to navigate the space with ease. Don’t forget the visual clutter. Often a few well-chosen posters and signs speak louder than a sea of freebies from suppliers.
4. Add Some Colour
The design world prefers the term “pops” of colour. Not my favourite, but they have a point. When surveying students recently about our library make-over, this was considered to be a priority! Like accessories, an accent piece can make all the difference.
5. Find More Opportunities to Ask for Student Input
They are the reason why we work in the space. The chance to use their critical thinking skills should be encouraged. “I’d read more if we had these books”, “Could we have round tables”, “Is it possible to plan a ComicCon in the library”. The rewards for asking are usually priceless.
Submitted by: C.A. Case from PCHS