Pop culture in the school library

Goering, Patricia


Friese, E. E. G. (2008). Popular culture in the school library: Enhancing literacies traditional and new. School Libraries Worldwide, 14(2), 68-82. Retrieved from http://libaccess.sjlibrary.org/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=lls&AN=502950913&site=ehost-live&scope=site

Friese argues that buying pop culture books, including books on Sponge Bob, X-men, Disney princesses, etc., which educators often write of as not “literary,” actually encourages reading, comprehension and a variety of literacies. She gives six specific reasons including the significant role pop culture plays in reaching today’s learners, as well as building both traditional and 21st century literacies.

I like the idea of students seeing the school library as “a place for me” as well as giving them choice and encouraging a love of reading for fun, not just as an educational endeavour, but I think this sort of reasoning could also be taken too far to the other extreme as well.

In School Libraries, Differentiation Through Curation

Karla Morones


Morris, Rebecca. “In School Libraries, Differentiation Through Curation”. Harvard Education Publishing Group. N.p., 2016. Web. 2 May 2016.


This blog posting covers how important the skill of digital curation is for school librarians to have.  The author would like to see digital curation not only in the hands of school librarians but the students as well. She believes having the students involved in the curation of digital material would lead to differentiation. Morris sees this happening by app smashing, a term coined by educator Greg Kulowiec, where a student would use multiple apps to complete a final task.  Morris suggests that school librarians would make excellent curators because they are enthusiastic and knowledgeable in helping teachers and students evaluate select and use digital tools

I found this article informative and  a valuable resource.  This is a skill that would serve all librarians well, being able to provide students and teachers with a list of digital resources that could be used for a lesson or a research project would help immensely.  It is important to differentiate learning for students and teachers this would make way for more effective collaboration.

Integrating Reading & Programs for ESL

Roys, Kelly
American Library Association. (2008). How to Serve the World @ your library. Retrieved from http://www.ala.org/offices/sites/ala.org.offices/files/content/olos/toolkits/servetheworld/LI_toolkit.pdf

Summary: This article from ALA describes the importance of providing collections and resources for ESL (English Second Language) learners to promote life long love of reading and learning. There are programs demonstrated as an informational resource to promote other programs in your local libraries and other resources to read to discover more about differentiation. 
Review: As an educator for the elementary age group, instruction serving this population should be relevant and applicable for information to be retained and acceptance/understanding to ensue. Students need a safe place for learning and by providing articles and information to highlight this need is important. Librarians have a duty to increase this as they are a hub for resources, programs, and types of books/materials for the students to access and teachers to utilize in their classrooms. 

Books for Reading Haters

Amy Hubschman
Z- Fun

Trombetta, S. (2015, August 14) 9 Books to read if your are someone who “hates” reading, because there is a book out there for even you Retrieved from http://www.bustle.com/articles/104059-9-books-to-read-if-you-are-someone-who-hates-reading-because-there-is-a-book

This web article focuses on high interest, easy-to-read, highly circulated books that most non-avid readers would find pleasurable.  The article reminds us that not all books need to be classics, critically acclaimed, or award winners to be a pleasure to read.    
Like the author of the article said, I too am always stunned when people say “they don’t enjoy reading”.  Many of those who say they don’t enjoy reading haven’t either found the right genre or the perfect book to pull them in.  Or possibly they were force fed the “classics” like many of us were in high school and as a result look at reading as a virtual whopping.  Obviously there is a time and place for the classics like Moby Dick and Shakespeare but perhaps opening up to new classics such as The Kite Runner or Who’s Afraid of Virginia Wolf? could open the world of reading to so many new patrons.    
By Terry Funk

Ondrack, J. (2004). Great Collection! But is it enough?. School Libraries In Canada23(3), 12-17.

Summary: This article discusses the necessity of teacher librarians collaborating with teachers to have a useful collection and increase development of student competence in information skills. Collaboration gives collection development a school wide focus, a sense of shared ownership of library resources, greater access and use, and more input in the organization and planning of future purchases. Suggestions for developing better relationships include the use of Resource Based Learning (integrating information skills with classroom instruction and program planning), having a library weeding party that includes teachers and the principal, selecting new materials that support projects and the curriculum, providing more instruction for both teachers and students and aligning the collection with school instruction. 

Evaluation: Without collaboration, can a collection, even a good one, address student needs, and provide curriculum support. According to this article the answer is ‘No”. While teacher connections are key to developing a collection there is often little input from teachers. According to this article, it is the Teacher Librarian who needs to take an active role in making sure there is collaboration and that recommendations from teachers regarding resources are followed. As we have studied all semester, when collaboration occurs, creative ideas come together, as in the learning commons, and both student participation and achievement rise.