Sunday, September 6, 2009
I used to work in a school where all the primary classes were scheduled to come to the library for borrowing and a 'Library Lesson'. In the beginning it was release time for the teachers - they would dump the classes and run. The lessons were 45 minutes long which included the borrowing time and the lesson. We were expected to write reports on what the students achieved in these library sessions.
The other teacher librarian and I lobbied to move to flexible scheduling and after many months we did so, but by then I had handed in my resignation and was moving on. The person who replaced me didn't quite understand the concept and the flexible scheduling was declared a failure and the classes were then scheduled in again with an interesting twist that the teachers were to accompany the class to the library and co planning was to take place before the lessons so that skills could be integrated into the curriculum. This of course didn't work very well because the Teacher Librarian didn't have time to go to any planning meetings as they were too busy teaching.
Now I am in a school where we have flexible scheduling, and I have been thinking about how this is working out and if it is working as well as it should in my first unit of giving it a go and if I am giving it enough 'go'.
I have found I am the one who needs to be very specific about what I want to be involved in and do with the students. I have a list of information literacy skills that I believe each year group need to be proficient at by the end of the year but I cannot cover all of them. I need to select the most important ones and work these into the planning for each unit.
The other thing I have found is that I need to be proactive in making appointments with the classes. I cannot wait for them to come to me, I need to be in their face about getting into the classes. I need to be at all the planning meetings - without an invitation if need be.
So, my actions for this week will be to go to the year 6 teachers with a short list of skills we need to focus on in this unit. These will include using noodletools, citing sources, accessing the on line databases we have for information and using their accounts of our library system. I need to make a time to visit with the classes this week, and, I need to make sure all of the links and databases are ready and working. I need to attend the planning meeting that is scheduled this week and the ones after that.
I cannot wait for the teachers to make the first or second move, I need to be working on this all the time and make it a priority to make it work well. I need to remember the teachers probably have not worked with this model either so I have the responsibility to create a model that works for everyone.