Stromness Academy Library

Books, reading and life in a school library

Hit the Ground Running

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We are now into our third week back after the summer holidays and it doesn’t really feel like we have stopped ‘running’ since the first day. Everyone has got back into the way of work, study and learning as far as I am aware. The usual library activities have started, both leisure and academic.

S1 and S2 Library & Information Literacy Skills courses are well underway and taking up lots of time but are certainly proving to be enjoyable from this Librarian’s point of view and I do hope the pupils (and staff) are getting something out of them too. We will be covering everything from behaviour expectations, how to choose and borrow books, Dewey Numbers, Alphabetical Order, fiction & non-fiction books, various games to reinforce library skills, reading records, reading skills such as scanning and skimming, getting to know the reference section, learning about Glow (the Scottish intranet for education), using journals, using the internet, note taking… to name but a few.

The first research classes have now been booked into the library and are coming from S2 Geography to research earth forces. Book displays that relate to this are up and more resources will be borrowed from the Orkney Library to support the 3 week project.

Friday afternoon activities have started with two separate ones being run in the library. One of our 5th year students is running an Animé & Manga Club in the upper library for a small group of around 6 pupils. They will be watchingand discussing  Animé films and Manga novels and even having a go at learning to draw Manga.

In the lower library, the Role Playing Games group of 10 pupils will be playing Dungeons & Dragons (D&D) or Magic the Gathering (MtG). 6th year students are helping out with this so this Librarian may well get a chance to play a  D&D character rather than be Dungeon Master… now to think on what type of character I will play (Muahhaha)!

Tuesday after school activities got off to a slow start this week… where were you all? Hopefully more folks will turn up next week to play either D&D or MtG and of course, the library is also available until 4.30pm Tuesdays for anyone wishing to use the computers, read, study, do homeowrk, chill…

Lunchtime proves to be popular (no doubt it will be especially so today due to the fact in is pouring down outside) with pupils ‘chilling’, using computers for games, playing MtG, reading or maybe even doing school work – remember school work will always get priotiry over leisure use on the PCs! Must remember to get the board games out so folks can play chess or draughts at lunchtimes.

An eager six S2 pupils (all boys this time round) join me every morning before registration to help in the library, shelving, and shelf tidying. They will now go on to train to be Pupil Library Monitors. Three 5th year Pupil Librarians will be helping to ‘train’ them. In the process the younger ones will be doing Dynamic Youth Awards (some of the hours of which can be counted towards the Bronze Youth Achievement Award),  whilst the senior pupils have expressed an interest in doing their Silver Youth Achievement Awards. These are a great way to give recognition (and qualifications) to the pupils’ work they do in helping with library duties. Two of the S5 pupils have already gained their Bronze YAA which is the equivalent of a Standard Grade at General Level, by taking part in library-based activities.

So it is proving to be as busy as ever… now to get on with all the book ordering, shelving, shelf tidying, book processing, cataloguing, development work, newsletter writing, filing, website development, Glow development, Pupil Librarian training, meetings, staff liaison…. the list could go on but despite all the work and pressures of running a school library and always multitasking, often being interrupted, etc, I wouldn’t have it any other way – it is more of a passion than a career. FS

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  1. Pingback: Batgirl was a Librarian – Scottish Roundup

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