Library Orientation: Never Enough Time!

By far my biggest obstacle as a teacher librarian is not having the necessary time needed with students in order that they practice, and ultimately master, vital information fluency skills. As a teacher I know that I am not alone; for all of us, there is never enough time. Library orientations are no exception.
Buying used shelving just before the start of school put us back a bit on the whole orientation thing.  By the time there was some sense of order in the library, 5th grade LA teachers needed to start the DRA reading assessment process, which set us back even further. Students were visiting the library every day without a clue of how it all worked!
Library Orientation Instructional Goals:
Students will….
  • Practice the skills necessary to  independently access library materials (including locating books and self check out).
  • Gain understandings about library expectations and procedures
  • Folow written directions necessary for creating Destiny accounts and discover the possibilities of using this platform
  • Learn about library clubs & activities including te 20 Book Challenge.

After a short “Do Now”, giving students the opportunity to share their interests, and a fairly brief (I’m trying!) intro, we split students into three groups for 10 minute center activities.

1. Meet Mrs Schiano at purple couch for photo op and quick book selection review, followed by independent book choice and self check out.

2. QR code scavenger hunt for library procedure videos created by two awesom Lounsberry students!

3. Destiny account creation & discovery.

After finishing, we met back in classroom area and reviewed accessing library website and library clubs and activities, including the 20 Book Challenge.

What worked? Center based activities. Why?

  • 5th grade students are already familiar with learning in this manner,
  • students are learning independently,
  • it promotes small group collaboration,
  • it keeps students engaged through movement and a sense of anticipation,
  • and  it resembles the typical library environment, many students learning different things, in different ways at the same time!

What needed improvement?

  • Students needed time to sign up for clubs.
  • I needed to access student understandings of library expectations and procedures. How? Not sure best way to do this other than adding another station. I might have added an assessment element at the end of each video, such as a link that took students to a google form.
  • Students needed more instructional and practice time usinig Destiny.

Next post… Lounsberry’s Virtual Center Orientation with 5th Grade Math/Science Classes.

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