Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Library Advocacy

Advocacy of the library is important and key in keeping a successful program. After careful consideration and reading of material I have come up with the following four ways I could work on advocating the library in the next school year.
1. Create a Wiki for the library:
I would create a Wiki for the library that advertises the services offered by the library. There would be pages promoting the Gateway Awards and new books received in the library. In addition I would create a page for each of the teachers. On this page we could link projects which have been worked on collaboratively by the classroom teacher and me. The project information would include a description of the project along with attachments of any papers which go with the project. In addition any tutorials would be embedded which could be useful while creating the project. For example if the project is created in Windows MovieMaker any tutorials could be embedded about the use of MovieMaker. All of the teacher pages would also contain a list of resources which specifically pertain to their classes. This wiki would also contain a schedule of what teachers have signed up to use the library each day during each class period.

To create this Wiki I would need to setup a Wiki and potentially Jing. I would use Jing to create any tutorials needed for the projects. These tutorials could be made by myself, or students. This wiki would be linked to the main library website and be for students, teachers, administration and parents. By having all of the information out there on the website anyone in the school can find out what is going on in the library and see how busy it can be.

The inspiration for this project came from:

2. 30-Second Spot on the Weekly Newscast
The Mass Media class is responsible for creating a weekly newscast and I would approach the teacher about doing a 30-second spot on the library each week. This spot could contain book talks for new books or the Gateway nominee books. It could promote other resources and services the library provides. Other options for this section could be profiling projects occurring in the library and using photos taken of students working. This would get the library and its services in the minds of both students and teachers each week. In addition a link to the newscast is put on the website so parents would also see what is going on in the library.

To create this I would need the cooperation of the Mass Media Teacher and the students who were willing to work on this project weekly.

The inspiration for this project came from: and

3. Weekly Blog
I would use a blogging website to create a weekly blog for the library. This blog would include information on the library happenings for the week. Things such as the frequency the library is in use during the week, projects I have helped with, any trouble-shooting I had to do for the technology and more. Basically I would keep a written description of anything that occurred that week in the library. This would be a good way to showcase all that is done as a Library Media Specialist.

To create this blog I would use a free blog website such as Blogger. The blog would be linked to the Library Wiki and be more for administration, teachers and parents. Students are not as likely to want to read a blog about what happens in the library.

The inspiration for this project came from:

4. Monthly Department Promotions
I would have a monthly promotional meeting for each department. During this meeting I would provide snacks and showcase library resources which could be beneficial in their classes. Information such as databases which would have useful information, website ideas, and any new books that apply to their classes. In addition I would demonstrate free online resources which could be used for class projects such as Animoto and Glogster. I could also preview any iPad apps which would be applicable to their classes. When scheduling these meetings I would schedule them starting with the departments that use the library least first. Some departments spend little, if any time in the library. I would hope to encourage them to utilize the libraries resources too. So I would start with the Fine Arts, Vocational, Math and Physical Education departments before scheduling the English, History and Science departments. I would invite the school administration to each of these meetings.

To have the meetings I would need to gather the materials I hope to show the departments. I would also need links to any tutorials that could come in useful and of course I can’t forget the snacks. These meetings would reach teachers and administration.

The inspiration for this project came from:

Then I also considered the following question:
What do I do that no one else in the building does?
As a librarian I keep up with the latest new technologies and resources available for free to our students and teachers. I assess the resources and then share them with the teachers most likely to benefit from their use in the classroom. While providing the resources to the teachers I give them hits, tips and a basic tutorial in how the resource is used. There are plenty of amazing free resources which have untold classroom applications that teachers just don’t know about yet. They go to conferences about teaching their subject, but not necessarily introducing the new technologies. Applications such as Animoto, Prezi, and Glogster are just a few of the resources out there for use. Also Google provides tons of great options which teachers and students should be educated on.
I also work closely with the teachers to ensure we have resources which align with their curriculum and ensure its success. My expertise in research and the library resources will be beneficial to the teachers. Yes, classroom teachers can instruct their students in research, but I will have a better knowledge of the collection and be able to help students locate their resources more quickly.
In addition I strive to find outside funding options for the library. Current budgets are extremely tight and the library is unlikely to get additional funding from within the district. One way to improve the resources available to the library is to look for grants and private donations for the library. Who else will have the time or inclination to do this?

1 comment:

  1. I like the idea of embedding Jing videos on your wiki. I wasn't sure you could do that but I was just able to do it with no problem -- well, a bit of a problem but as soon as I found the right page, I could do it.

    If you could follow though on the Mass Media project there would be an indication that there was ALWAYS something happening in the library. I like it.

    Monthly department promotions will soon become overwhelming. I don't think you could keep this up for very long. It is very ambitious but the pure stress of keeping up with this would be considerable.

    Good response to "what do I do." The last paragraph is important only if teachers think the library is important in the first place, but I think you have made a pretty good case previously.