I believe the school library is at the heart of a school. It is interesting that of all the other schools in my company, I have the only library (that I know of). Whenever the principal takes prospective parents and students on a tour of our campus, they always stop by my library, and they are always so happy to see it. It’s a good selling point for us because not only do all our students get dedicated time in the library with me, but they also come back to this space for technology class. Typically, I have tables spread out, but due to Covid-19, I had to remove them. I was told I’d have to travel to classrooms. Um, no thank you. I had small round cushions that I could space out safely on the floor and I purchased lap trays for the students to use while they worked. Bingo. Classes are back in my library. Where the heart of my school is. But the bigger point here is, the kids are thrilled to be there to learn and while reading the articles that went along with the hyperlinked school library CYOA, each one really spoke to me and I also thought back to the Library 2.0 text by Michael Casey and Laura Savastinuk. “Your organization will keep the Library 2.0 momentum going by encouraging your staff and customers to be a part of the process on a continual basis” (Casey & Savastinuk, p.128). Yes! This is happening pretty much organically at my school! Our Education Managers are behind this whether they know it or not by providing all the tech we need which I coach teachers and admin to integrate within core subjects. And the kids are the winners here.
One of the many things I teach to students in my library is digital citizenship. What I struggle with was exactly spelled out in the Livingstone article, Digital Natives or Naïve Experts. “The main dilemma this research presents is the disconnection between the children’s familiarity with a range of internet-related concepts, and their possession of the practical skills these concepts refer to” (Livingstone 2019). There is a gap. The kids all know the difference between personal and private information and what should be shared and what shouldn’t, the trick is filling that gap. I think all I can do is move forward and teach and lead by example. Parents really do need to be partners here as well, but I feel that I can make a difference in my little ol’ 2.0 K – 5th grade school library.
Casey, M. E., & Savastinuk, L. C. (2007). Library 2.0: A guide to participatory library service. Medford, N.J: Information Today.
Livingstone, S. (2019). Digital Natives or Naive Experts?