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Showing posts from August, 2017

Dealing with Stresses in the School Library that are out of your Control

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Running the library last year was extremely stressful for me. There were a number of factors that made it so. None of those factors were in my control, though how I handled the stress certainly was. I was dreading getting ready for the new school year a few weeks ago because I considered that little had changed for this year. I have to give a big shout out to my principal because she has figured out a way to make my job in the library a bit easier this year. I want to let you know that the year has gotten off to a very good start. 

The first problem that made teaching extremely difficult in the library occurred right at the beginning of the 2016-17 school year, and it had to do with the furniture. We moved into the new building in August of 2013. We had only about 400 students then, and there were many empty classrooms. The library had been outfitted with only four rectangular tables which was certainly not enough when a class of 32 students arrived in the library for a lesson. Since …

What a New School Librarian Needs to Know Part 2

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As I reflected on my last post, I realized that I had more to say about being a new school librarian. First, I want to talk about technology. I remember many years ago (in the 90's) one of my colleagues in my district told me that she did not need to learn how to use technology in her library. The building that she was in was built around the early 1900's, and she had only one electrical outlet in her library. At that time, my library was computerized. I still had the old card catalog card system, but circulation was all done by computer. I thought she was crazy because technology was changing my world. If I wanted to prepare students for the next step after they left me, I had to embrace the technology.


If you are a techno-phobe, I don't think that you can be a good school librarian. You don't have to know all the answers, and you don't have to know everything there is to know about computers and programs. You do have to be a risk taker and willing to try technol…

What a New School Librarian Needs to Know

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If you are embarking on your first job as a school librarian, I can give you some tips based on my over 25 years in the biz having served students in grades kindergarten through 12th. This year I have had several newbies approach me for assistance. I love serving as a mentor, but just like you as a newbie, I have lots to do to prepare for a new school year. So first piece of advice, a librarian's job never ends. That means you should not sweat, just breathe, and try to take one day at a time. There is always something to be done in a library. I mean that literally. This will be my twelfth year at Patrick Taylor, but that doesn't mean that I get to sit back and let the library carry on as it did last year. I have new ideas, new projects, new students, new teachers, and every year I want to see improvement in my library program. 
Second bit of advice--Take the time to get to know your collection. When I moved from the elementary setting to middle and high, I had lots of books to…

Getting Ready for 2017-2018

I am to report back to school on August 7th. It has been a great summer of travel, visiting with friends and family, reading, and getting projects completed around the house. Yet, all good things must come to an end, but on the other hand, I really do love my job especially working with so many wonderful pre-teens and teens. Being in the library is the best place to be in any school. There is always something happening and no day is like the previous one.

This will be my twelfth year at Patrick Taylor. Over these years I have developed an incredibly strong program to service the students and teachers through the library. As new teachers arrive I have to get them on board with the school's expectations for conducting research and writing papers and how I can help support the curriculum in their classroom. With the addition of eight new teachers this year, I began thinking of how I will make sure they know what I can do for them and their students.

I did some research and found this…