Thursday, November 22, 2018

Dear School Librarian In Action: Working with Teachers

Here is part 2 of my conversations with school librarians of Raya School where we talked about working with teachers and sealing collaborative projects.

3. My priority in buying books for the library are the titles that teachers need for their lessons. However, it is not often that teachers suggest titles due to their busy schedule. Is there any possible guide that I could follow in acquisition of books?

This has been partly answered in number 2. Teachers will always put their teaching hat first. Some teachers may not recognize or admit that they need support, yet, they do. Librarians can lend that support.

In lesson planning, teachers identify learning materials, references and instructional aids. What are listed in that part of their lesson plan? Knowing what’s there can be a starting point to creating a Possible Purchase File. This is your record of resources to acquire sooner or later. Also, find a way to engage teachers in conversations about their learners and teaching practices that work. This will inform you of media and technology to set up, maintain and organize in the library for teacher's use. Have a Kapihan sa Aklatan, open a social media account for the library if your school allows this to promote library learning resources from print, online to maps, infographics and other visuals.

Over the years, I have documented and blogged about activities and projects that school librarians and teachers can do. Go to Teacher and Librarian Collaboration.

4. I give simple prizes such as stickers and bookmarks to those who frequently borrow books in the library. This works for those who are already frequent users in the library but how could I reach those seldom visit the library?

Hmm… what grades do you handle? You can approach reading promotion by grade levels, for example, K-3, middle grades, junior high and senior high. Consider their reading developmental levels in promoting books and the use of the library. Also think of what the library can offer them aside from books. Are the senior high students stressed from academics? Set up a stress buster or Makerspace that has art and crafts activities. Display books and resources about arts and crafts to go along with it. Storytelling is a MUST, especially in K-3 and changes focus somehow in the middle grades.

Reading promotions can be a program you can create but it is anchored on your collection development program and your three year library development plan.

For a bigger picture of the many hats that school librarians can wear, read this post on Reading Advocacy . This doesn't mean a librarian must play all the roles at one time, or that he/she is all that. Librarians are people in the school community and those they work with need to know and recognize that. That is part of our work also - help them see what we can do to support them.

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