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Library specials
Old 09-19-2019, 05:22 PM
 
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I think this is the right board...

Over the years, I have read a lot of posts about librarians in schools and their jobs. In my district, each class went to the library, listened to a read a loud from librarian, then spent 15-20 minutes finding books to take out. That was it.

So, I have questions.
How many of you do only this? (Looking for books)
For those that donít, what else happens during your library time?
Are your librarians credentialed/certified/college degree in library sciences or a volunteer?
Why are the students doing worksheets or any other work besides finding books?
How much time do you get to be in Library?

Iím not judging...this is just very, very different from my experience and I am curious.


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Old 09-19-2019, 05:57 PM
 
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My very first year of teaching, 10 years ago, we had a "real" librarian. She taught lessons and had students look for books. At the end of that year, the district got rid of those positions and the former librarian became a title 1 teacher.

In my second district, kids went to the library at the end of their tech special, which was taught by a para. In my current district, the library position is covered by a para who spends much of her day doing intervention groups, but classes can sign up for library time one time per week (I think it's like 25 minutes) to go look for books. Their classroom teachers accompany them and I'm not sure there are lessons beyond mini lessons about choosing books.

Besides the three I've worked in, I haven't heard of any district around here that still has librarians. I am always surprised to here it's still a job in other places, and I get wary when people say they want to go into that (just because I think even if they still have the position now, for how long?)
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:11 PM
 
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I still remember some of the library lessons we had, long long ago when I was a student. Dewey's decimal system. Using the card catalog. Reader's Guide to Periodic Literature. Obviously today's lessons would use internet resources. Oh, and the best was one year we made books, learning how to sew pages together, make end pages using shiny paper dipped into a pan of water with oil and paint making swirls.

And of course, listening to stories and choosing books to check out.
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Old 09-19-2019, 06:29 PM
 
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Our librarian does lessons. Sheís also very good about tieing in with what we are doing in class if we give her enough warning. For example, before our big research project, sheíll do a lesson on how to research and a review of the resources available through the library and how to access them. The kids only look for books the last 10-15 minutes.
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Old 09-20-2019, 01:13 AM
 
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In my first school, we originally had a certified librarian. I think mostly she did what you describe--read a book, have a discussion or a small whole-group activity, let students browse and check out books. She was succeeded by two non-librarians who were certified, master's-level elementary teachers, and wow! They were fabulous. They taught students how to use library resources and planned activities using technology. One of them did centers based on our science and SS curriculum because we just couldn't get enough into our class day. At that school, the librarians also did a book fair twice a year.

I'm in middle school now. Our librarian also teaches, but infrequently. She doesn't have specials, so she has to be invited into a class to teach whole-class. Mostly she does a ton of space and activity management (the library is the biggest academic space on campus) and a lot of academic clubs.


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librarians
Old 09-20-2019, 01:13 AM
 
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Our librarian wants to use the 40 min. well! This year for 4th graders, she is having them work on a school newspaper. It was all her idea and she's taking care of the whole thing. My class is so excited! I can't wait to see how the first edition turns out. We are very fortunate to have her. I do not think she has a librarians credential although a bachelors in educ.

They can pick books in about 15 min so, the rest of the time will be spent on the news.
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Old 09-20-2019, 02:38 AM
 
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Our librarian/media specialist is certified in her area. When students come for specials, she does teach lessons. They range from library lesson, technology/STEM based lessons, to lessons tied in with our grade level standards. Students usually have time at the end to pick a book. We also have times, nearly every day, where students are able to come to the library independently during centers to check out books, if they need/want to (a few at a time per class of course).
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Old 09-20-2019, 02:38 AM
 
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Our classes go to library for 40 min. each week.

Our new librarian is awesome! They do listen to a story and pick out books, but they do so much more!

She helps support our reading curriculum by doing an interactive reading. She also helps teach study skills and internet safety.

She set up a maker space in the library as well and the students are able to do STEM challenges and make things that go along with the read aloud or our social studies and science units.
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Old 09-20-2019, 05:13 AM
 
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We used to have an EA, and she read to them every time they came and then they looked for books and sat and read for the rest of the time.

Now we have a certified teacher-librarian. They hardly ever read a book, but they do activities. What? I don't know because there is no connection with the classroom teachers. Half of my class never checked out books.

Now there are also STEM bins in our library. I wish the emphasis was on books and reading.
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Old 09-20-2019, 06:29 AM
 
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How many of you do only this? (Looking for books)


We do


Are your librarians credentialed/certified/college degree in library sciences or a volunteer?

No, my librarian is great and very hard working, but she does not have teaching credential or a degree in Library Science.


Why are the students doing worksheets or any other work besides finding books?


Usually the "worksheets" are activities to help the kids practice using library media (like a map of the library and list of call numbers and they try to figure out where they would find that book, or Where they would find a book about tigers or Babe Ruth).

We also do a few things that are supposed to teach them how to use resources like almanacs and encyclopedias-usually she gives some information they need to look up in the resource and then write down the page number its on.

Otherwise the "worksheets" are comprehension questions that go with the chapter book the librarian is reading aloud.


How much time do you get to be in Library?

GRades 3-5 get 45 minutes because we do more activities and we do chapter books and check out books. Grades k-2 get 30 minutes since they just do picture books and simple games and check out books



Last edited by Kinderkr4zy; 09-20-2019 at 03:59 PM..
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Old 09-20-2019, 07:47 AM
 
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Where I'm at right now, our librarian is not certified. Because of that, teachers accompany their students to Library time. They don't have a class, as such; they find books, have a story read to them or, if it's an older class, may do an activity about finding materials in the library and otherwise have quiet reading time.

In my previous position, for most of my years there our librarian was certified. Library was considered a class (30 minutes) and was included on report cards. In that case, Library was handled like any other special area class with activities, worksheets, assignments, etc. Teachers escorted their classes to the library but were not required to stay for Library class. In the last couple of years (4-5 years ago), "Library" was replaced by "Technology" but was still taught by the librarian who had taken some extra training and "Library" became 15-20 minutes to check out and return books accompanied by the teacher. Book check-out, shelving and inventory was all handled by the library aide.

In one of our area schools, "Technology" is taught by classroom teachers now and "Library" has been replaced by "STEM." There is no certified librarian and classroom teachers just arrange with the library aide for a time for their students to check out and return books.
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LIbrarian vs non certified library support st
Old 09-20-2019, 10:37 AM
 
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Most of you clearly defined the problem - not everyone working in a library is a "librarian". Librarian, Library Media Specialist and Teacher Librarian are terms used by many state licensing boards to define a highly qualified or certified librarian - with the advanced education (grad degree) necessary. Library Para, Library Assistant , Instructional Assistant, and a few other terms are used to define someone working in a library without the advanced degree - and as some of you noted - the services you get vary greatly.

I am a Teacher Librarian - both degrees. When students come to my library they come with their classroom teachers because we do a lot of co-teaching. I also like to give the classroom teachers some time to get caught up with paperwork - not all my classes require co-teaching, especially the first few of each school year (however, this time is not for kids to make up missing work or for teachers to test kids for reading skills, etc. Respect my classroom as I do yours).

There is a trend in the library world to include STEM or STEAM in the library. May of us are also technology teachers, wither by training or just fell into it, so it's kind of a natural thing to do. I do get annoyed with librarians who forget that reading is not dead, and needs to be encouraged, nurtured, shared and loved.

My state librarian organization has noted that very few specialists get de-professionalized as we do - save money by getting rid of the highly trained and skilled librarian and replace her/him with an untrained body and call them "librarian" - it's such an easy job stamping in those books

Much thanks for supporting us!

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Old 09-20-2019, 04:14 PM
 
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My school has a librarian. She does story time for K-2. She does not do any classes or lessons for other grade levels. In Florida, to be a media specialist you have to take the subject area exam but are not required to have a masters degree.

She is open the majority of the day for check out. We send kids down in small groups and they can check two books out.
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Old 09-20-2019, 05:15 PM
 
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We have an aide and she checks books in and out. Her hours are part time so she doesnít have time to do much more. Iím glad to get books in kidsí hands.
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Old 09-21-2019, 04:27 AM
 
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How many of you do only this? (Looking for books)
For those that donít, what else happens during your library time?

Our elem classes have a weekly 45 minute block of time scheduled in the library. They are never read a book of any kind, ever. The students spend about 10 min looking for a new book, but are not taught about finding books in their levels, we are expected to do that in the classroom. We also have to check to see if they checked out a book in their reading levels when they return to the classroom. If not we have to send them back later to check out a new book and the kid gets in trouble from the librarian. We use the Accelerated Reader leveling system. The remaining 35 minutes is spent watching videos on the smartboard relating to the yearly theme - nothing related to library, school, or reading. They also do coloring pages and a lot of them with very specific directions. If the students do not get the coloring completed in library time the pages are sent to the classroom and expected to be finished by next week's library time. If they are not finished the next week the librarian keeps the student in from recess to finish coloring. She often does not give students enough time to complete the coloring in the library so I have to deal with it to keep the kids out of trouble with her. IMO - a huge waste of 45 minutes, or more, each week. Sorry, I kinda vented a little here.

Are your librarians credentialed/certified/college degree in library sciences or a volunteer?
Yes, our librarian is a licensed elem teacher and a credentialed librarian. A library credential is required in our state. Which could explain why this teacher is still employed. Credentialed librarians are not easy to come by, especially in our small rural community. Good school librarians can do so much to help create a positive reading and learning environment in schools.


Why are the students doing worksheets or any other work besides finding books?
I could tell you my opinion but I may have already said too much. You ask the same questions I do each week when I drop my students off for library time. There are so many more productive ways to spend 45 minutes that actually support and foster student learning. It is such a disappointment and a huge frustration.
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30 minutes
Old 09-21-2019, 04:53 AM
 
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The para who is a book lover, reads aloud. My students check out books and read or quietly talk. I view it as their special time. It is important to have time to just talk to each other.

I wish we could schedule in two times a week. The thirty minutes goes quickly.
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Old 09-21-2019, 05:44 AM
 
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My district stopped having official librarians 20 years ago. The teachers have to be the librarian one period a week. It does not amount to more than get a book and read while we do paperwork.
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Old 09-22-2019, 08:37 AM
 
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I think it's unfortunate that traditional library education has been pushed out of schools. I think many teachers agree. We are fortunate in my community in that we have an excellent public library system. Teachers are able to take their kids to the public library on a regular basis to participate in programs there. They also have an outstanding summer reading program.
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Old 09-27-2019, 02:02 PM
 
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Media is a rotation on our fine arts schedule. It alternates with Guidance. So the kids have each every other week. We have a new Media Specialist this year (that's what they are called here). She was a classroom teacher. She took the exam and added it to her certificate. No special training (which I think is very sad). She does the traditional stuff: reads to them, talks about books, teaches them where to find stuff, etc. She worked with the Art teacher on projects for The Dot, which was good. She has a smart board and is google certified, so I have seen some stuff going on with that. I know she has good intentions, so we will just have to see how it goes. The kids can go at other times of the day to just check out books.
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Old 09-28-2019, 10:35 AM
 
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We have a library tech who runs the library from about 8am - 11:30 a.m. She reads a story to the TK/K/1st grade students and then they check out books. Other grades go into the library once per week at a scheduled time, with their teacher supervising, and check out books. There is no story, curriculum, activity, etc., unless the classroom teacher arranges it and does it him/herself. Our time slot is 20 minutes long.

At my own children's school, the librarian reads stories to the primary children, does activities with them, and single-handedly runs the A.R. program-- she works with students on choosing good fit books and runs the reports for the teachers each week to send home. She also runs the Scholastic Book Fair, and recruits her own family members or recruits parent helpers herself three times each year. She is amazing.

Despite my efforts to encourage families, very few of my students have ever been inside the local public library. When I meet with parents I provide applications, go over the hours and location with them, explain the available materials and resources, and even the different ways to use public transportation to get there. Every year I drop off little goodie bags with the library staff and they agree to hand them out to any of my students who visit the library. I drop off 10 goodie bags every fall and I've never come close to running out, ever.
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Old 10-16-2019, 09:18 PM
 
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How many of you do only this? (Looking for books)
-We have a certified librarian who teaches a specials class. She sees the kids for 45 minutes about twice a month, but she is FABULOUS about letting kids check in and out outside of class meetings.

For those that donít, what else happens during your library time?
N/A for now, but one year in another district, we only had a certified librarian once a week. We had a 20 minute window to use the library for circulation only.

Are your librarians credentialed/certified/college degree in library sciences or a volunteer?
She is a certified SCHOOL librarian, which is a little different from having a degree in library sciences. She couldn't be a public librarian, but she could probably be a children's librarian at a public library.

Why are the students doing worksheets or any other work besides finding books?
There are some research skills/library skills/reading skills that are taught. There aren't many worksheets, but I'm sure there could be.

How much time do you get to be in Library?
45 minutes every 10 school days is our scheduled library time (during my planning), but students may visit outside of that time.
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