For the first time in a LONG time, the start of the school year was full of newness: new school, new staff, new library, new collection, new students.
Take a peek as to what I saw when I first walked in to the library:
In one capacity, it’s super exciting: a chance to start anew. But it’s also nerve-wracking. Sftressful. Overwhelming.
It turns out that – aside from getting to remove a LOT of plastic – the two librarians at the middle and high school level are also new to the school. It just so happened that all three librarians turned over last year, and I’m kinda glad: we three came in together, went through new teacher training together, asked one another our rookie questions, and connected over librarian-only concerns (ordering! budgets! categories! organization! standards!). And we bonded. So when I feel stressed and overwhelmed, there are two people in my corner who get it, no questions asked.
Note to everyone: find your people. Take time to build the relationships at the beginning of the year. There’s never time to do it, but make the time. It’s worth every minute. Find the person or people to have in your corner who’ll have your back. It’s a sanity-saver.
I continue to be thankful that I’m working in a lower-school capacity (grades PreK-4th). The challenges of newness are mitigated by this age level, which plays to my strengths.
Lessons and ideas will continue on this blog. They’ll look different – the London school has different technologies and databases, challenging me to plan and pre-plan differently than ever before. With all students having iPads, how can this be meaningfully incorporated? How do apps get added to student machines (like Tellegami and ChatterPix)? With PebbleGo not part of the current database offerings (and I love PebbleGo!), how do I get approval to get the purchase done for this school year so that students & staff can research? And how do I manage, curate, and catalog a language collection that includes over 12 languages outside of English?
Welcoming international students is a new hurdle as well. The languages spoken are numerous, and I wanted to be as welcoming as possible. Thanks to Hafuboti for the signage, which I posted on our exterior windows, incorporating some of the more popular languages of our students.
Due to (serious) construction down the hall, the library wasn't open during yesterday's new family orientation. Instead, I hung these signs outside, welcoming our international community. #librariesareforeveryone #hawkslslib #librarianinlondon #teacherlibrarian #elementarylibrary Signs generously made and shared at https://hafuboti.com
New year. New challenges. Deep breath, folks. It’s go time!
Cheers, y’all. –arika