Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Student Article "Not Just A Room With Books"

We asked some of our library regulars to write an article for the blog. We want to know why they like to visit the library. We asked them to talk about the things they like and how the library media center has affected them.  Freshman Lakeside High School student, Sidra Hanson, brought the following article to us just a few days after our request!

"Not Just A Room With Books"
by Sidra Hanson

            The word “library” didn’t always mean a lot to me. After all, the word’s literal meaning is a room or building where collections of books and other media are. So if you like to read, you go to the library. If you don’t enjoy reading, you find other places to go. Right?

            Wrong. This perception changed when I came to Lakeside. I’d always loved reading. The question of whether to come to the library wasn’t a difficult one. But I was startled by how different the Lakeside libraries were compared to the one back at my old school. The atmosphere was, and is, totally different. It’s welcoming and filled with students chatting with their friends at the many tables, scanning the shelves for books, or working, sometimes frantically, at one of the laptops situated at one end of the room. Posters advertise good reads and the TV screens show funny pictures of events at Lakeside and Lakeside students.

            As soon as one walks in the room, it’s clear that a lot of effort goes into what you see, whether it be the warm physical appearance or the programs that go on inside. The librarians work with everybody:  students, teachers, and visitors. Students have the ability to show off what they can do in presentations at lunch. All they have to do is ask.  Recent presentations have included foreign exchange students, people working the 3D-printer, gamers, and singers. Teachers align some of their projects with events in the library. Guest speakers ranging from student bands to college students sharing their experiences to local professionals come in from time to time to share what they know.

            A library shouldn’t just be a room with books. Not everyone enjoys reading, and that’s okay. An ideal library is a place where learning beyond the classroom is possible. It’s a window into the outside world; it’s a place to open your eyes to new things. It’s a place where all students, no matter how well they do in school or who they are, are on equal ground because they have a chance. They have a chance to move forward and not only learn, but enjoy it. It’s no easy feat, but Lakeside High accomplishes it.  

How we connected with a student in South Africa via Skype (for the first time!)

How a student led Breakout EDU professional development for teachers in the school library.

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  1. Wow! This is a terrific reflection from a student. Love this "An ideal library is a place where learning beyond the classroom is possible." I think I'll be using that quote in my own classroom.
    Claire Dietsche

    1. Claire, thank you so much. I can't wait to share this with Sidra! We actually posted this entry live in a library lunch program. I wanted to show them how blogs and social media can work together. We posted in front of about 60 students- then watched the stats as it was viewed. Then I Tweeted it out- and we watched the stats. They seemed to like it. I have been updating Sidra how many views her article had received. She will love that you are using her quote! Thank you so much for the encouragement! This will make her day!

      Stony Evans

  2. I love this, especially with libraries starting to change a little more into "learning commons". I think this is a perfect example of what is to come.