Sarah Elliott’s Blog

Travel with me on my voyage of learning and discovery…

Building a library from scratch

Posted by sarahelliott on September 21, 2009

Our school has moved to a ‘new’ location. New to us, but actually very old! The positive is that our new location means that we now have more space for a school library and in reality it’s as if the library is in its first year of existence. Last school year we catalogued the majority of our resources, but now we’re hoping that we can really promote them and the purpose of the library.

The negative is that the room is actually a bomb shelter… so we have no windows and the air circulation is not the freshest that you might hope for. Oh yeah and then there’s the issue of us ‘temporarily’ sharing the room with music! But, I’m looking at the positive sides of things because I am positive that we can make this work.

One image that struck me from Ross Todd’s workshop (see previous post) was that of a school library with inspiring words such as “triumph, invent, dare…” were painted in large letters, arranged as a word cloud, on one of the library walls. What a fantastic idea! So, in my new library, I am dedicating one of our enormous notice boards to that idea and will try to recreate something similar. I hope it works! I’m not sure yet, but I’m also going to put up some questions based on the PYP 10 key concepts, as they are thought-provoking and will hopefully inspire the students to think more deeply the different resources that they use.

I am only working 1 day a week for the moment, so the process of creating the library is a slow one. Last week I finally managed to move the furniture into place (this was previously impossible as the library was being used a) as a teachers’ workroom and b) as a classroom and c) it had to be painted and the floor was polished)! This week they will apparently start work on the internet connection in the room and so next week I will start to sort out the resources – with some volunteers.

I am enjoying this challenge!


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