Lori SmithLIBS 6991Reflective Essay A librarian truly wears a lot of hats. The traditional viewpoint of a librarian is that sheshelves books and reads to kids. Librarians of today do not even resemble that image. Todaythe Librarian is referred to as the Media Coordinator. They are technicians, researchers,shoppers, designers, teachers, mediators, and the go to person for just about everything. Media Coordinators have varied responsibilities based on school and administrationneeds. General daily duties include tutoring, monitoring students, organizing events, locatingmaterials and resources, planning and implementing lessons, and collaborating with the otherteachers in the school and the district. The Media Coordinator has to be available for anythingneeded. In addition to these outside duties, she also has the responsibility of maintaining themedia center. She has to make sure that the books are taken care of properly, that resourcesand materials meet the needs of students and staff, and that the Media Center is organized andappealing to students and staff. Most libraries are moving towards a flexible schedule. Staff sign up for time slots asneeded. Havelock Elementary School’s Media center operates on a fixed schedule. The MediaCoordinator has classes scheduled all day most days, as well as tutoring and lunch duty. In asituation like this one, there has to be a system in place that allows the media center to beopen and accessible as much as possible, even when the Media coordinator is not in the room.They have implemented a student/staff self checkout system. A computer is set up for studentsand staff to check out books without the need of assistance. The system is not perfect but it
helps to keep the media center open all day. Students have a folder and scan their library cardsand books out. The Media Assistant handles returns and shelving of books. Collaboration is a major component of being a Media Coordinator. A Media Coordinatoris a co-teacher. They teach Reading but also help to reinforce Science and Social Studiesconcepts. At Havelock Elementary School the Media Coordinator is responsible for collaboratingwith teachers and reinforcing weekly reading concepts. She has to know the curriculum andwhat content is being covered in class. Collaboration can be difficult due to schedules andunforeseen events, but the Media Coordinator needs to be resourceful and creative in findingways to collaborate. At Havelock Elementary School the teachers are required to have 45 dayplans to share with resource teachers and administration. This helps the process and benefitsboth students and staff. The ability to plan and be organized are necessary for being a successful MediaCoordinator. Planning lessons and locating resources are essential for successful lessons.Students need materials and topics that are both interesting and engaging. When studentscome to the Media Center for a lesson they expect something different than their regularclassroom. They expect to be actively engaged and to be exposed to a variety of materials andresources. Technology use and instruction on using technology is a component of most MediaCenter’s curriculum. The Media Coordinator at Havelock Elementary School refers to the Mediacenter as Technology. Along with the reading content students are exposed to computer partsand use, word processing programs, projects using power points, brochures, and othersoftware applications.
Flexibility is one of the most important aspects of being a Media Coordinator. Beingflexible can be the difference between loving or hating your job. Things change constantly andyou have to be able to change with them. When working in a school or with people in general,circumstances arise that can cause havoc. A well planned out lesson falls apart because theinternet is not working. During one of your favorite activities the students are not engaged andyou have to stop move on to something else to get them interested. A child gets sick, the officeneeds you, paperwork needs to be done, last minute testing, parent shows up, etc. There are somany things that can happen that will test your flexibility. The ability to switch gears and tackleproblems is essential. My internship experience showed me that Media Coordinator’s have to possess manyskills. They have to be creative, good communicators, organized, and flexible. They have to bewilling to take on challenges and to perform duties that may be outside their expertise. It is abig job with a lot of responsibilities. Media Coordinators are always busy and there are alwaysthings to do, but at the end of each day they are making a difference in students’ lives andhelping to shape our future.