Reflections of a school librarian at the end of an incredible year

Reflections of a school librarian at the end of an incredible year

I enjoy reflecting on my year that has passed to identify positives and negatives. To move on, I must reflect on what I could have done better and, more significantly, what I have discovered about myself.

As I was writing this, my husband was reading the newspaper and said he hated reading year-end reviews; I had to giggle because I was going to write one. It did make me question whether this was a good idea, but then I realised that this is more for myself than the readers, so I hope you keep reading and learn something helpful.

What worked well

Libraries are gateways to learning, ideas, and skills. They promote cultural growth and socialisation in school. One of the key objectives of a school library is to promote healthy reading habits. 

Simply put, reading improves academic performance and is a part of every facet of education. The 3Rs of reading offer three different perspectives on reading as a practice:

1. Recreation: The word ‘recreation’ gives students (and faculty) the impression that reading about anything they do for fun qualifies. But it is much more than that. 

Picture book readings to PYP pupils and readings with teachers in many languages for International Mindfulness Day are done with “Recreation” in mind.

For literacy day, we welcomed author Andaleep Wajid to speak with high school students, and the event was well-received by the students. Witnessing our students experience joy when the books they suggested appeared in the library was immensely fulfilling.

2. Results. – Results have a more direct connection to the curriculum. Being result focused could imply incorporating the skill of reading for meaning. To support the subjects being taught, we always aim to link fiction books to non-fiction topics. With PYP students, we have conducted a session on fiction and how to differentiate it from non-fiction. 

3. Real life. The real-life category of reading is what a pupil will require to be successful in their adolescence and beyond. Majority of these abilities will likely be taught in the classroom, but many children may feel unmotivated to read, because they feel it serves no value to them.

The truth is that there will always be students who will never be readers and who will not respond to suggestions for books, audiobooks, and other materials. However, if they can be helped to access everything they will need after they graduate from high school, they will also feel successful and a part of the school’s reading culture.

In term 2, we are planning to do the following with students:

  • Writing a shopping list based on a recipe they want to cook. This will be based on the books they read like ” Measuring Up”.
  • Planning meals for a week based on a particular budget.

Promoting the school library on social media

Social media was the primary means utilised to advertise the school library in the last year. Although, we believed these advertisements were geared towards teachers and parents, rather than kids, Others included using displays, posters, competitions, and YouTube book trailers for TV.

Maintaining novelty and freshness of online content is not always simple, but I like the challenge. Creating for social media about the school library has satisfied my desire to write with a purpose. The endeavour evolved beyond simply expressing my opinions into teamwork.  

Although I do enjoy writing, it is a challenging skill. I am also looking forward to practice writing about specific topics.

Things I am excited to try or explore in the coming year

I am excited about the possibilities that artificial intelligence has to offer in the academic context. I am interested in how libraries may support teachers with concerns surrounding academic honesty and GPT. 

Another important goal we have set for this year is to explore and create possibilities for the librarian to work with teachers throughout the curriculum.

What are you looking forward to for the new year? 

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