Stromness Academy Library

Books, reading and life in a school library

A New Term, A New Carpet, The Same Library (mostly)


Welcome back as the cycle of the year continues into a new session and new term. Welcome to the new S1 who have hopefully now found their feet and are settled into secondary school life.

The summer holidays are now becoming but a distant memory as pupils and staff settle back into routine and the work well and truly begins.

The school library, which is as busy as ever, has undergone some change over the summer. The fading beige carpet of 30+years old, was replaced by a bright teal one (sure it was meant to be more turquoise) which has really lifted the library visually.





The hard work of emptying the library and setting it back up again was done by our janitors and in particular, Mr Ritch who was very organised and ensured everything went back in the right place. (I can’t thank him enough!) It is no easy task moving over 6000 books and other resources, as well as every bit of movable furniture, fixtures and fitting.

The layout is pretty much the same as before, but the magazine racks have been removed and will be re-purposed as notice boards as the plastic racks were brittle and cracking. One will go back in the lower library, with the other being put upstairs in a much reduced Careers Section.

The Upper Library has had most of the shelves dividing it removed, with a couple of bays being retained against a wall for university prospectuses and some careers books. It was decided to finally get rid of the job leaflets (and as such there are plenty of plastic file boxes available for re-use if pupils or departments want them) as much careers work is now done online via My World of Work(Photo to follow once resources replaced)

Most S1 pupils have been issued with their library cards, as well as sitting the Accelerated Reader ‘Star Reading Test (despite internet issues) and they have begun borrowing books in earnest. S2 – 6 have been issued with ‘back-up’ barcode labels, via register teachers, to stick into their planners.

A handful of pupils come into the library before official opening time in the morning to ‘help’, by doing a few minutes of shelving and shelf tidying and more pupils would be welcome to do this. If pupils are interested in helping at other times or joining a more formal voluntary pupil library scheme

Formal lunchtime activities haven’t started up yet (except for ‘Luncheon & Dragons’ on Thursday), but library regulars are continuing to run their own D&D, MtG games, or board games. Most pupils who use the library at lunchtime are engaged with what they are doing, whether it is reading, schoolwork, leisure activities and it is great to see so many pupils from different year groups sharing the space and interacting with each other. It has to be pointed out, though that if pupils require computers for school work, they get priority over leisure use. The library is usually very busy at lunchtimes.

Friday activities! Well, the long running Dungeons & Dragons / RPG  activity has exploded in size. There are now 39 pupils taking part (over 10% of the school roll) playing Dungeons & Dragons, Pathfinder, and Starfinder role playing games, and Magic the Gathering. This means the whole of library space is being used. Thankfully, pupils are leading most of the groups, with Mrs S taking on the beginners D&D group. A couple of teachers also support this activity.



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