Reflection Journal Librarian:Ruth R. Wiesmann Campus:Farney Elementary School Date: October 12, 2008
SECTION ONE Respond to the following: If ‘Resilience’ is the measure of a student’s capacity to meet sustained challenges, complex tasks and new information, how does your library contribute to building greater resilience? Farney’s library truly is the center of our school. From PreK and PPCD to our Administrative team, important things happen in the library. First of all I try to make EVERYONE feel welcome in the library. I encourage ALL staff members and ALL students to use the library resources. I advertise the resources to our parents as well, and invite them to come in and learn how to use them. My goal is to encourage independent use of the library’s resources by all patrons who come into contact with Farney’s library.
SECTION ONE, cont. Response continued: Our library is used for PLEASURE reading and information satisfaction for all grade levels at Farney. As I build the collection, I assess the interests and needs of the patrons of Farney and purchase books to meet those needs. Then I teach all of them to find the books that meet their needs. I also stress that any subject that we do NOT have a book about, information can be found in our databases, or in the Harris County Public Library – which I advocate use of all the time. Kids need to be comfortable in our library – but know that “libraries” will always be something they can use to learn more and satisfy their needs.
SECTION TWO Respond to the following: Much discussion has taken place about technology integration in 21st century schools. How are CFISD libraries changing to be integral to the core instructional and behavioral practices that lead to student success? Our library catalog is technology – and very attractive and usable to our students. It is kid friendly and inviting. Farney’s library home page is filled with links to other information – from award winning book lists, that give patrons ideas about different books to read for pleasure, creating life-long learners and readers – to – databases such as Facts On File and World Book Online, that are filled with information we MAY not even have a book about in our library to satisfy that “need to know” most kids have. Curiosity fuels real learning and when kids WANT TO KNOW something, library resources satisfy that need.
SECTION TWO, cont. Response continued: I teach teachers, students and parents how to use the technology resources provided by our library. I advocate BOOKS, but know that technology is an extension of our library that will satisfy patrons’ need to know even when books are not available on a certain subject. As new information becomes available technology resources are updated ALL of the time. Books can become obsolete almost as quickly as they are printed – for example, once the election occurs November 4 all of the Presidential information will need to be updated. Technology can do that!
SECTION THREE Respond to the following: Compare your school library to the Resiliency model and identify the tipping point, the first small change that will bring about great change that will recreate your library as the heart beat of the school and create change in the building. First of all, I need to gain the trust of every teacher in the building. They need to trust that I can provide books to support their lessons, either right within my collection, or through ILL. Once I have that, they see me as a partner in their quest to teach students. Then, I need to gain the trust and respect of each student. I can do this by listening to them carefully to assess what each and every student wants and needs each time they come to the library. Putting the right book, in the hands of the right reader at the right time – builds trust in me as a LIBRARIAN.
SECTION THREE, cont. Response continued: Finally, I need to gain the trust and respect of the administration. They need to VALUE my contributions to the overall education of their students – both to satisfy curricular needs AND personal reading pleasure needs. Because once a child feels PLEASURE reading, they want to read more and more reading guarantees more learning. It is a cycle!!! The more they read, the better they get – and the better they get, the more they want to read. Anything I can do to GROW readers helps everyone – in the long run! That is my Quest!