I got my new position when a well-loved and well-respected librarian decided it was time to retire. Needless to say, being the new girl on the block is going to be a challenge. Not only am I unsure of exactly how my predecessor ran the library day-to-day, I’m unsure about what expectations the administrators, teachers and students will have for our daily activities. Do they want me to read to their classes every day, coordinate the administration of AR tests, conduct specific research projects, continue traditional programs, and if I should continue traditional programs, what are they?
In the 21st Century, the role of librarian, and especially the role of school librarian, is evolving. Personally, it is extremely important to me to support instruction. If supporting instruction means helping to reinforce skills, that’s what I’ll do; if it means developing reading programs, that’s what I’ll do. I also see plenty of room to teach digital citizenship, multimedia and visual skills as related to the Common Core Initiative, and let’s not forget communicating just a love for reading.
I know I’ll do things that people aren’t sure about – especially since they were used to a certain style. And while I want to protect traditions that are important, I also want to bring in new things if I can.
I have been thinking a lot about how I am going to introduce myself and how I will figure out what is important to people. To do that, I need to make connections with faculty/staff, students and parents.
Getting to know parents will be a challenge since I won’t see them very often. I want to make sure I parents feel welcome to visit the library or to contact me. I have already written up my first checkout letter and have added a QR Code for easy website access. Additionally, as soon as I have my new teacher training, I plan to develop a Facebook fan page to use to promote activities in the library (Update - it's all up and running!). At my last school, this was a very successful way tp sending out quick communication and sharing fun pictures of activities. I’ll link the fan page on my web page and also send out additional communication with QR codes to parents to spread the word about the page.
What are some of the ideas you have to get acquainted with a new school community?