A Dynamic Library Program: It’s all about student learning.
“Access to more and more information is of little value unless a school places high value on equipping its community in the processes of becoming informed.” James Henri
The process of being informed: “If you’re going to teach anything in the Information Age shouldn’t it be how to find, evaluate, and use online information critically?” Alan November
Schools must adopt the educational philosophy that the library media program is fully integrated into the educational program. This integration strengthens the teaching/learning process so that students can develop the vital skills necessary to locate, analyze, evaluate, interpret, and communicate information and ideas. AASL Position Statement on Flexible Scheduling
21st Century learning/PYP: 1. Creativity and Innovation (risk-takers) 2. Communication and Collaboration (communicators, open-minded, balanced) 3. Research and Information Fluency (inquirers, knowledgeable) 4.Critical Thinking, Problem-solving, and Decision-making (reflective, caring, thinkers) 5. Digital Citizenship (principled) 6. Technology Operations and Concepts
Essential Skills in Research: Questioning Brainstorming Recognizing an information need Finding key words Evaluating information Note-making Searching different media Using the WWW Ethical use of information Citations Sharing information - collaboration
Language Support Teacher Librarian Literacy Coordinator TIFS ESL Humanities Coordinator Math Coordinator Science Coordinator School Libraries Work! Research Foundation Paper 2008
When the library media program is fully integrated into the instructional program of the school:
students, teachers, and library media specialists become partners in learning.
The library program is an extension of the classroom.
Information skills are taught and learned within the context of the classroom curriculum.
The wide range of resources, technologies, and services needed to meet students learning and information needs are readily available in a cost-effective manner.
What is Flexible Scheduling? "a scheduling arrangement that allows for variation in library use, rather than having each class scheduled into the library for a regular, fixed period" Flexible Scheduling: Implementing an Innovation
What is Flexible Scheduling? Shannon (1996): “The library media specialist and the teacher plan together for instruction or use of resources based on student learning needs in each curriculum unit and schedule on that basis. The schedule is arranged on an ad hoc basis and varies constantly.”
Flexible Scheduling Allows teachers to bring their classes to the library at the time of greatest need for instructional purposes. Flexible Access Allows students to visit the library at their point of need. Flexible Access and Technology Integration in your Classroom
Why Flexible Scheduling? Educational research on effective learning tells us:
learning skills in context is more effective than learning in isolation
student achievement increases when libraries and librarians play an integral role in student learning
Flexible Scheduling: Implementing an Innovation: How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards
Why Flexible Scheduling? "Donham van Deusen and Tallman (1994) . . . found that more collaborative planning and teaching existed in schools with flexible- or mixed-scheduled libraries, particularly where principals expected team planning and librarians were full-time and did not cover teacher planning time." Flexible Scheduling: Implementing an Innovation: How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards
"The integrated library media program philosophy requires that an open schedule must be maintained. Classes cannot be scheduled in the library media center to provide teacher release or preparation time. Students and teachers must be able to come to the center throughout the day to use information sources, to read for pleasure, and to meet and work with other students and teachers.” AASL Position Statement on Flexible Scheduling
What does it take to implement? Donham van Deusen (1995) suggested the following conditions are necessary for successful implementation:
An information skillscurriculummatched with the content area curriculum
Flexible access to the library media center throughout the day
AN EFFECTIVE SCHOOL LIBRARY… Is accessible to the total school community, on site or remotely Is cost effective because one book is used by many Provides flexible scheduling and timely access to the collection by all students Offers a broad range of materials—reference, fiction, and nonfiction Addresses a broad range of reading levels Minimizes loss through cost-effective tracking systems Supports learning to read and reading to learn with informational and imaginative text and literature Adds new resources throughout the school year to keep collections dynamic Creates a sense of ownership that is shared by the entire school community Roscello, Frances and Patricia Webster (2002). Characteristics of School Library Media Programs and Classroom Collections: Talking Points. Albany, NY: Office of Elementary, Middle, Secondary, and Continuing Education, New York State Education Department.
Librarians are NOT single-subject teachers, as are music, art, PE. These Single-subject teachers will integrate what they do into the UOI, but they teach a specific subject. .
Everything that the teacher librarian is qualified to teach, and is interested in helping the students learn, is inextricably tied to the classroom curriculum.
Teacher Librarians are trained as: Teachers and as Information specialists – skilled at sourcing and selecting resources; skilled at search techniques, evaluating websites, using information.
Current library program: Each class visits the library once a week: book exchange, short lesson – sharing new titles, introducing a genre, learning library lay-out, very basic skills. Library schedule fixed. Teachers’ schedules fixed, with little room for manoeuvre.
Flexible Library schedule: Classes sign up for a 20 minute book exchange per week/ could be a reading period. Teacher accompanies students. Teacher librarian works with grade level teachers, team teaching, supporting units of inquiry, reinforcing information literacy skills. The library can be scheduled separately from the teacher librarian.
What does a successful flex program look like for students?
The library is a very busy, dynamic place.
Students are in the habit of coming to the library as soon as they need new reading materials. Many come more than once a week.
Students see the librarian as a literacy and inquiry resource
What does a successful flex program look like for students?
Students are responsible for what they've learned in the library; it is tied to what they are doing in their classes.
Students learn inquiry skills systematically.
Book checkouts increase
What does a successful flex program look like for teachers?
Students are allowed to go to the library on their own when they need new books.
Grade-level teams meet at least once per unit of inquiry with TIFS and the librarian.
Where appropriate, librarian and TIFS meet with other support teachers.
Classes are scheduled in the library and IT lab as needed
What does a successful flex program look like for teachers?
Library resources related to the current unit are made available in the library or the classroom.
Classroom teachers, librarians, and TIFs are all responsible for the Information and Technology Literacy curriculum.
Classroom teachers often team teach with the TIFs and librarian
What does a successful flex program look like for administrators? Flexible scheduling won't be successful without administrative support.
allowing time to investigate and implement a flex schedule
Planning: Planning needs to be done well in advance of the unit’s commencement date. Teachers, PYP coordinator, TIFs, language support teachers, coordinators,TAP, and TL look at learning experiences, engagements for the following unit, and discuss where information skills will come into play. They will plan times through the unit where TL will join classroom teacher to teach information literacy skills.
Little boxes Collaboration will avoid separating the different skills into different teaching/learning areas. The TL’s role does not have to be restricted to Information Fluency :
We need to think of the library “as a part of rather than apart from the classroom, and of the librarian as a line member of the teaching staff rather than an adjunct to it.” Gary Hartzell
Research: There is significant research proving that a well-resourced school library, with a qualified TL, makes a difference to students’ learning. In our situation, I believe that with our resources, and the fact that we do have qualified library staff, it does not make sense to not utilize fully either the resources or the skills of the library staff. Our library does not need to be purely a repository for books and other resources – it can be the heart of all learning in our school – and will be so when the new learning hub comes into being, but only if the philosophy is in place.
COLORADO (LANCE, ET. AL., 1993; LANCE, ET. AL., 2000) The size of the school library staff and collection explained 21% of variation in 7th grade Iowa Tests of Basic Skills (ITBS) reading scores, while controlling for socio-economic conditions (1993). Elementary school students with the most collaborative teacher librarians scored 21% higher on Colorado Student Assessment Program (CSAP) reading scores than students with the least collaborative teacher-librarians (2000).
DELAWARE (TODD, 2005–6) Data collected from this study shows that 98.2% of students were helped by the school library in their learning process, when the school libraries had state certified, full-time school librarians, flexible schedules, active instructional programs for information literacy development, and a networked information technology infrastructure.
DELAWARE (TODD, 2005–6) The mere presence of a large collection of books, magazines, and newspapers in the school library is not enough to generate high levels of academic achievement by students. Such collections only make a positive difference when they are part of school-wide initiatives to integrate information literacy into the school’s approach to standards and curricula.
DELAWARE (TODD, 2005–6) Elementary schools with flexibly scheduled libraries performed 10% better in reading and 11% better in writing on the ISAT tests of fifth graders than schools with less flexibly scheduled libraries.
Teacher comments: I love the flexible schedule because it allows me to send the students as they need to get a book or as they need to do research and doesn't tie me to a certain time, and the students can read as much as they want to because they can go and get more books and don't have to wait until the next week to get a book. —fourth-grade teacher
Teacher comments: It's a lot easier to be able to say, “Why don't you go check it out in the library? That's a great question.” And feel comfortable that they can go to the library and be able to get the help and look it up without me trying to schedule a time, like, “OK, that's a great question, but we'll have to look it up next week when we go to the library.” —third- and fourth-grade teacher.
Teacher comment on the loss of planning time: You need to look at it the other way to see that the students really benefit the most, it depends on who we're here to benefit, I guess—for the benefit of the teacher or the benefit of the students, being able to learn some real-life skills. —fourth-grade teacher
Teacher comments: And I think it also encourages the children to use the library more. At other schools I've been at, the library just isn't on anyone's mind. But I think in ours the library is very central. Not only is it physically central in the building, but I think it's central in kids' minds. —first- and second-grade teacher
Works Cited "ALA | AASL Position Statement on Flexible Scheduling." ALA | Home - American Library Association. 27 Sept. 2006. Web. 13 Mar. 2010. <http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/aasl/aaslproftools/positionstatements/aaslpositionstatement.cfm>. Hartzell, Gary. "Capitalizing on the School Library’s Potential to Positively Affect Student Achievement." White House Conference Resources. Web. <http://www.fcps.edu/DIS/LMS/news/flexible_scheduling/pdfs/white_house_conf_resources.pdf>. Henri, James. "Understanding the Information Literate School Community." The Information Literate School Community 2:Issues of Leadership. WaggaWagga: Centre for Information Studies, 2005. 11-26. Print. Hoiseth, Linda. Flexible Library Scheduling in the Elementary School. Presentation 2009 Keith Curry, Lance. "How School Librarians Help Kids Achieve Standards: The Second Colorado Study." Apr. 2000. Web. 13 Mar. 2010. McGregor, Joy. "ALA | Flexible Scheduling: Implementing an Innovation." ALA | Home - American Library Association. Web. 20 Mar. 2010. <http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/aasl/aaslpubsandjournals/slmrb/slmrcontents/volume9/flexible.cfm> The Primary Years Programme A Basis for Practice. Rep. Cardiff: International Baccalaureate, 2009. Print. Roscello, Frances, and Patricia Webster. "Characteristics of School Library Media Programs and Classroom Collections: Talking Points." Office of Elementary, Middle, Secondary, and Continuing Education, New York State Education Department (2002). Print. "School Libraries Work!" Scholastic Library Publication, 2008. Web. 13 Mar. 2010.