Sunday, May 02, 2010

Moving Toward a 21st Century Library

I had the opportunity to talk via Elluminate to a class of students across the country last week and the week before. I have participated in many Elluminate sessions and I love them but I have to admit, I was a bit nervous about actually being the person who shared my thinking in an elluminate session. As a presenter, I tend to feed off the group's energy and I rely heavily on conversations and active participation. But it was definitely a learning experience and I continue to be amazed that we can all be sitting at home and learning with people so far away.

These visuals probably don't say much without the talk that went with them, but pulling this session together helped me reflect a bit on my vision for the elementary library--where we've been, what my goals are. Talking to others and making my work visible always helps me see the work differently. I always appreciate the opportunity to articulate my own thinking because it helps me become more clear for myself about where it is I am trying to grow and learn.

It took a little bit of work to create a presentation that I could share publicly like this, but as part of my own learning journey, I wanted to make it public. (my first slideshare:-) These slides show the space and events in terms of the bigger goals of the library--but it cannot begin to share the day to day conversations and learning that the children have. I would need a different format for that, I think.

Embedded in this slide show is the slides that I used early in the year to begin a yearlong conversation on "Who are you as a learner?" I don't know if the students would even remember that first conversation but looking back at it and reflecting on those initial thoughts, I love the way the kids are now beginning to use the library to support who they are as a learner.


  1. Your vision is amazing. I'm still thinking about the 45 minutes a week conundrum... your vision is really linked to what, why, and how to learn, there have to be ways to get more intentional collaboration going in some sort of rotation in addition to the 45 minutes a week... hmmmm. Start small. One teacher, one project... not sure what it looks like, but I think it could blow the roof off and help you LOVE your job as a hub of learning and magic at Riverside.

  2. Thanks girls:-) My challenge for next year is getting some depth for the kids and the challenge of 45 minute classes. There is so much about the work I love but I am so not good with short chunks of time! The workshop this weekend really helped me think about where to go next. Collaboration is key and time to do that is key. Actually looking forward to the challenge and having time to work it out over the summer. Thanks:-)

  3. I love this! Thanks for sharing! I have a "futuristic" library in a novel I'm writing, plus I'm on a school board that is focused on bringing 21st century learning to our classrooms (and libraries!). I like the many ways you have partnered with the public library!


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