21st Century Librarian. My Top 5 Priorities When Creating Book Displays. One of my favorite things to do in my school libraries is to set up book displays.
When I first started my job, I had no idea what I was doing, but over the years, I’ve developed strong opinions about what does and doesn’t make a good book display. Today I’m sharing the five priorities that are important to me when I set up displays which I hope will inspire you in your display endeavors. To Weed or Not to Weed... I am a lover and collector of books.
I still have some treasured books from my childhood that I refuse to part with. When I was getting my Master’s in School Librarianship at Longwood University, I shuddered when I discovered that I would have to actually throw books away. Weeding was an impossible task that went against every book-loving impulse I had. As a 6th-grade English teacher who had spent nine years painstakingly growing my classroom library with Scholastic bonus points, yard sale finds, and library discards, I could not imagine throwing books away. Then I became an elementary librarian and saw firsthand the havoc that K-5 students could wreak on their library books. But what about the books that were in pretty good shape but hadn’t been checked out in years? Problems Like insidious phantoms, these menacing books continued to haunt my library. Then there were the children from the mission trip who were so grateful for our ratty, outdated library books.
Solutions Reflection. Hilda K. Weisburg. School Library Journal. “She gasped when she saw a girl wearing hijab on the cover,” says Deborah Vose, recalling a seventh grader who wandered into her library one afternoon and stood, captivated, before a display of books.
Staring at the cover of Brave, the 2017 graphic novel by Svetlana Chmakova, the student grasped the book and exclaimed, “Someone who looks like me!” It was a brief moment of discovery and connection that would delight any educator, but to Vose, the librarian at South and East Middle Schools in Braintree, MA, it was especially significant. She—like the vast majority of respondents to a recent School Library Journal (SLJ) survey—has made it a priority to bring books reflecting diverse cultures and perspectives to the children and community she serves.
Finding the right book for the right reader is a constant goal of librarianship, but the import of diverse books is bringing new meaning to that effort. Some libraries have adopted diverse content as part of the institutional mission. Weeding without Worry. Library weeding gets a bad reputation, thanks in part to weeding horror stories. In 2013, Highland Park (Mich.) High School was accused of throwing out a large collection of history materials, including some rare items, which had been cultivated over a 50-year period. That same year, the Urbana (Ill.) Free Library discarded nearly 10,000 items, apparently just based on age, rather than condition or use. The discarding was done at the director’s command—while the head of adult services was on vacation. What usually happens is that a disgruntled (sometimes justifiably so) staff member sets off the alarm to the public about what’s happening behind closed stacks.
Doll mayc. Weedingguidelinesbysubject. Standards for School Library Resource Collections. A PDF Copy of the Following Information is available at the link provided.
Standards for School Library Resource Collections, 2016 All schools regardless of enrollment or grades served should use these core collection standards for evaluating the library resource collection. The results of the evaluation should be used for long-range planning to establish goals for collection development. Standard selection tools and the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE) collection development guidelines are used to facilitate decisions on acquisitions, weeding, and collection evaluation. (See appendix C for weeding guidelines.)
Risk Library collections may be exemplary in some areas, but not others. At Risk A minimum of 11 books per student that meet the At Risk age requirements, are current, aligned with the curriculum, reflect students’ interests, and are age and developmentally appropriate. Basic Exemplary. Crewmethod12. Authors Who Skype with Classes & Book Clubs (for free!)
Welcome to the Authors Who Skype with Classes & Book Clubs List!
I’m Kate Messner, the children’s author and educator who maintains this site. I started it because I’ve found that virtual author visits are a great way to connect authors and readers, and I realize that many schools facing budget troubles don’t have the option of paid author visits. With that in mind, this is a list of authors who offer free 15-20-minute Q and A sessions with classes and book clubs that have finished reading one of their books. As an author, I offer Skype chats for all of my titles – check out the “Books” tab above for a list! If you’re interested in booking a “virtual visit” with me, please visit my author-Skype page for current availability and directions for requesting a visit!