Sneak Peek: Engaging the Learning Community

According to a national study on young people and volunteering, having friends that volunteer regularly is the primary factor influencing a young person’s own volunteering habits—in other words, more influential than the actual cause is the social context. Only 19% of those who volunteered came up with the idea to volunteer themselves. More than half, 57%, were invited by someone: a friend, family member, or other adult. So, what might be the roles for the school library here?

In her video series with School Library Connection, “Engaging the Learning Community,” Dr. Rebecca Morris explores the why and how of creating a social or collaborative context for learning, including involving adults from the school and from the broader community. In this sneak peek (below), Morris looks at how the school library can accomplish these goals through service learning and volunteering . The full workshop—with coverage including performing a needs assessment, engaging the learning community via makerspaces, and creating a community reading culture—is available to School Library Connection subscribers here.


Help! My Assistant Doesn’t Like to Shelve Books!

This column by Mary Keeling from the latest issue of School Library Connection has been getting some buzz. Happy reading, and remember: “Everyone is a volunteer!”

Keeling_MaryAt a recent meeting of new elementary librarians and their mentors, someone asked, “What is my assistant supposed to do? She doesn’t like to shelve books!”

A paradox of school library management is that the librarian is in charge of the library program, but a school administrator evaluates support staff performance. Without clear lines of authority, supervision experience, or detailed descriptions of successful task performance, the new librarian may feel it would be easier to have no help at all. Continue reading “Help! My Assistant Doesn’t Like to Shelve Books!”