Friday, May 9, 2014

My School Library

My school has one of the best school librarians I have ever seen.  Other schools may have more space, more books, more seating, more whatever.  But no one else has Mrs. Book!  She is wonderful  - patient, kind, knowledgeable, and she always has fun contests and programs going on to keep our kiddos wanting to be in the library.
These flowers are made from the winning bookmarks from our annual Design-A-Bookmark Contest.  The students receive a blackline and crystal clear instructions.  Anyone who wants to participate, draws a cover for their favorite book on the blackline and submits it.  One winner is chosen from each grade level and she arranges for them to receive 50 full-color copies of their bookmark to share with family and friends.
She's always got a fun author display or two - Dr. Seuss is a favorite.  She also makes sure she has topical displays and if a grade level is doing book reports from a certain genre, she creates a display and goes out of her way to make sure that genre is easily accessible.
Meet Spitfire and Red, our library mascots - two frogs, whose presence, incidentally, require the students to use quiet voices so they don't get frightened.  Genius.  Above our dear froggies is a display of the nominated titles for the California Young Readers Medal.  Each year, she reads one title per week to the students during their library time.  At the end of the story, each class puts an object that represents the story into the Mystery Box.  When the class returns in subsequent weeks, they take each item out of the Mystery Box, repeat the title, give a quick summary and listen to the next story.  When all the nominees have been read, the students vote and our school choice is compared to the state choice.  The kids love it!
Mrs. Book doing her thing with my class.  Love these kids!
She makes it easy for the kids to find what they want - no aggravating "look it up" attitude.
She creates welcoming spaces throughout our tiny library.

Mrs. Book also runs an Accelerated Reader contest - my class won every month in the 2nd grade "division" :) so we got to hang the AR "bling" sign in our room and have our picture taken for display.  She awards Rock Star Reader awards each month to the student in each grade who has read the most words (determined by AR) and those students pose with giant blow-up electric guitars for pictures that cover the wall of the computer lab next door to the library.,  Mrs. Book has a special shelf for our Principal's Picks.  Any student who checks out and reads one of Mrs. Miller's picks gets to put his/her name in a golden treasure box and one name is drawn each month to receive a special prize.

This is just the tip of the library iceberg.  She is always coming up with fun, creative ways to welcome our students into the library and encourage them to read.  She hosts a Scholastic Book Fair twice a year to earn funds for our library, gets teacher input in order to add the best possible educational dvds to our collection, spearheads the Six Flags reading incentive, and more.

I love her Library Aide program - students must be trained to check in returned books properly using the scanner and to shelve books.  Once they pass their training, they may come in at recess anytime they wish to help her with those tasks.  What a boon for those students who don't enjoy the playground!

Here's to Mrs. Book and her counterparts all over the world - we need you, we appreciate you, we hope to always have you in our schools.  Thanks, Vickie.  You're the best!