Introduction, Library Instruction

Be Subversive

There are a few things that are really important to library instruction.

It should be comprehensive; covering what skills they need to know to succeed in this world.  It should be relelvent – what is going on the classroom and in their lives.  Sometimes the lessons we teach them have more to do with life than the classroom.

And most importantly library instruction should be FUN! The kids should never know what to expect the minute they walk in the door to the library and the lessons should definately be ones they will remember. One of the way to do this is to use a variety of ways to present the same thing; the other is the delivery.  I like to think that library instruction is a bit like acting or a stand up comedy routine.  They never know what is going to come out of my mouth and I usually use personal stories to illustrate my point.

Kids need to see that using the library is relevant to not only their school lives but also their personal lives.  Let’s turn library instruction on its ears!  Let’s be subversive and change the norm that is out there – library instruction is not boring – it’s not a filler class – it’s relevant, necessary and fun.


Author: SL

SL has been a elementary/middle school librarian for over 13 year having received my MLS from SUNY Albany, in Albany, New York. SL has worked in a variety of settings from rural to urban, with different populations. She is currently the librarian at RCS Middle School. She lives near Albany, New York with her husband and three children.

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