Friday, October 26, 2007

Wild & Crazy Librarians

Among the many things that struck me from the 3rd Rizal Library Conference, From Classroom to Career: Roadmaps to a Library's Success, it was Anne Riedling's 5 Little Rules With Big Impact that I consider as the most inspiring. She gave these simple rules to live by-

1.Lighten up! ☺
2. Say Thank you ☺
3. Take Care of yourself ☺
4. Do something wild and crazy ☺
5. Make an active choice ☺

Librarians have so much work to finish; so many issues to settle; so many concerns to contend with that often, stereotypes arise from such seriousness. But really, librarians are a lot of fun! Unless a more positive attitude is adapted, people who are outside the circle will always perceive librarians as lifeless, useless and boring. To quote another speaker from the same conference, librarians who do not break the mould run the risk of being categorized as a "non performing asset". Not a good perception of librarians at all.

Days before attending the Rizal Library conference, I've "bullied" my librarians to a chamber theatre style of storytelling for our preschool students in the Early Education Department (EED). At that time, the teachers in the EED were planing Book Week and Pet Week celebrations. They wanted to treat the preschoolers to a week long literacy activities and an awareness for the care of animals. How did the librarians take the "bulying"? There were apprehensions and anxieties, of course, since not all are comfortable telling stories. It does take a lot of guts to tell, besides. But chamber theatre is one technique where everyone has a part to play. Big or small, the task contributes to the overall result. It is a team effort. And yes, it can be fun too!

So, after adapting the script (thanks to Dianne delas Casas)of a well loved and familiar fable, The Ant and The Grasshopper, all four of us sat down and discussed. A new and a more detailed script included the background, music and a video clip. We had no time to practice since I was out for two days. I was assured that even in my absence, the rest of the team delivered. And they did, true enough. They may have had worries and felt the nervousness all over, but I know I can always depend on them. On the day of the performance, everything fell into place. There were little slips in the first session, but in a live perfromance, it is expected. I'm proud at how we all contributed to the work. The boys had fun and I suppose, the teachers had their share of laughs and amusement too.

What wild and crazy things can we do next?

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