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Collaboration and Schedules inthe School Library By: Patricia Reardon
Collaboration is the action of working with someone toproduce or create something.
Benefits of Collaborationfor the Students: Learning is maximized by the sharing of ideas and experience. Assignments are more meaningful and better planned. With the information literacy instruction embedded in subject-based curriculum the information becomes more relevant to the students lives and is better understood. Students develop critical thinking skills needed to evaluate resources Lessons that integrate informational technology not only have more opportunity to be creative and innovative but it also breaks the repetitiveness of the everyday class activities.
Benefits of Collaborationfor the Teachers: Two minds are better than one! Each participant contributes their own unique expertise and ideas to the development of the lesson, creating a better learning experiences for the students. Having the librarians assistance and expertise for the lesson saves the teacher time and effort. The more communication and collaboration with the librarian about the curriculum subjects, the better the library collection will be in those subject areas. Teachers get expert advice and assistance in designing assignments that involve library resources and information literacy concepts. Faculty member gets personalized reference and research assistance from the librarian.
Benefits of Collaborationfor the Librarian: Collaboration helps demonstrate the librarians instructional value to the school. The Library help enhance the school’s curriculum and the student’s academic performance. Librarians are better able to help students with assignments. The end results of the collaborative projects demonstrate the wide variety of opportunities information literacy offers. Collaborating with teachers gives the librarian more credibility and visibility in the academic community. It keeps the library active and involved in the school. It improves the statistics of the use of the library, which will help to reinforcing budget proposal justifications.
Librarian’s Understandingof Collaboration: As librarians, we are all aware of the value of collaboration between teachers and the school librarian because we learned about it in our Library Science Program. And our understanding of it is essential in order to comply with professional school librarian guidelines. The importance of collaboration is reinforced in our PDE 430 forms, Pennsylvania Guidelines for School Library Programs, and the mission of school libraries.
Librarian’s Understanding of Collaboration: PDE 430 Form states: Category III - Instructional Delivery – Candidates performance appropriately demonstrate integration of disciplines within the educational curriculum. Meaning it must demonstrate evidence of thorough integration and facilitation of collaboration for instruction of information literacy skills and use of technology within the educational curriculum.
Librarian’s Understanding of Collaboration:Pennsylvania Guidelines for School LibraryPrograms tells librarians to: Collaborate with classroom Actively participate in the teachers, reading specialists development, writing, and and literacy coaches to assessment of the school or enhance students’ reading district’s information literacy experiences, promoting reading curriculum using the AASL’s for information and pleasure. Standards for the 21st-Century Learner and its benchmarks as a framework. Collaborate with teachers to design, instruct, and assess student lessons or units And then correlate the written promoting authentic and information literacy curriculum project-based learning and with the Common Core State collaborate with teachers in Standards as collaborative assessing and evaluating units of instruction are integrated, instructional developed with teachers. activities.
Teacher and Administrator’s Understandingof Collaboration: They do not understand the value and educational potential of libraries and librarians because: Their teaching training emphasized on individual classroom interaction between teacher and student and lacked to mention the opportunities the library has to offer. Many have misleading notions about libraries being outdated and useless because of the Internet. Unless the library is actively brought to the attention of teachers and administrators it is likely to go unnoticed and undervalued.
Degrees of Collaboration Networking/Outreaching The exchanging of information for mutual benefit and going beyond the traditional duties of a librarian to provide on-site services. Coordination Two or more parties working together towards a shared goal or vision. Collaboration The action of working with someone to produce or create something.
Outreaching/Networking Maximize access to Offer instructional the library facility and technology resources within and workshops to faculty outside the school Attending library professional Blogging/ Tweeting/ workshops Facebook Form partnerships Attending with other school and departmental and public libraries grade-level faculty around you, in which meetings you can share Creating Resource resources, technologi Lists for teachers es, and have virtual collaborations
Coordination Library orientation Basic or lessons standardized instruction sessions Session on the in the library resources and databases Creating a available in the rubric, graphic library for a organizer, etc., for research project. research projects
Collaboration Sharing short term Collaboratively as well as long term design, instruct, and mutual goals and assess the learning benefits. activity. The librarian and the Each participant has teacher(s) work as a a unique expertise to team and contribute towards simultaneously teach the lesson. the lesson.
Ways to Initiate Collaboration Always remain a good Try to make your rapport with the library schedule as teachers flexible and open as possible. Utilize every Internet source and subscription data- Be helpful and base you can access to retrieve the latest volunteer your research, theory, mod expertise assistance el program, and case as much as study information possible, even if it available. does not fall under you job description.
Ways to Initiate Collaboration Attend department or Offer teachers ideas grade-level meetings. of instructional possibilities that Familiarize yourself include collaborative with the curriculum for effort between the each grade level. librarian and the teacher. Volunteer to take part Offer the library media of an activity or project center as the site for off the teacher’s an "idea bank." hands and integrate information literacy into the activity/project.
Ways to Initiate Collaboration Don’t expect to Share the successes collaborate with all the you’ve had with other faculty right away faculty members First start with As the word gets collaborating with the spread around, more highly interested and more faculty faculty members will want to Display the finished start collaborating with products of the you activities Soon enough you will Share the successes have to be setting you’ve had with other priorities
ALA and AASL have issued standards promoting flexible scheduling in school library. ALA wrote, “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.” Librarians try to keep their media center open as much as possible but run into conflicts.
In spite of research and standards issued by ALA and AASL, there is still a large number of schools that do not practice flexible scheduling, particularly elementary schools. There are several different reasons for this. The practice of flexible scheduling fluctuates depending upon the grade and school. There are both positive and negative aspects to each type of schedule.
Work Cited Hartzell, Gary N. "The Invisible School Librarian: Why Other Educators Are Blind To Your Value." School Library Journal 43.11 (1997): 24-29. ERIC. Web. 19 Mar. 2012. Hartzell, Gary. "Tactics For Building Influence With Teachers." Library Media Connection 27.1 (2008): 44. Academic Search Complete. Web. 19 Mar. 2012. Manzo, Kathleen Kenned. "Libraries Seeking Updated Role As Learning Center." Education Week 16.30 (1997): 1. Academic Search Complete. Web. 19 Mar. 2012. Loertscher, David. "What Flavor Is Your School Library? The Teacher-Librarian As Learning Leader." Teacher Librarian 34.2 (2006): 8-12. Academic Search Complete. Web. 19 Mar. 2012. Pennsylvania State Library, Harrisburg. Pennsylvania Guidelines For School Library Media Programs. 1983. ERIC. Web. 20 Mar. 2012.