ET, CO, IL
Stubeck, C.J. (2015). Enabling inquiry learning in fixed-schedule libraries. Knowledge Quest, 43(3), 28-34.
This article discusses the process one school librarian went through to create a collaborative learning experience for fifth graders while being in a fixed library schedule. Carole Stubeck talked about how she had tried doing a stand-alone project with students and that it took several months to complete since she only saw her students once a week for a short period of time. After getting advise from a former library professor, she got in touch with a fifth grade teacher and an instructional facilitator to create a inquiry unit on the American Civil War. Carole and the classroom teacher developed a spiral collaboration model for their ISP (Information Search Process) allowing students to work continuously on their project without having to wait for the next library visit. “Action research is a continuous spiral of reflecting, planning, and acting.” The overall assessment for the school librarian and her colleagues would take 3 years with each year a review of what worked and what didn’t work with their ISP. Both the students and the teachers used Edmodo to discuss ideas, update progress, post questions and get answers, and submit assignments. Edmodo made it easier for Carole and her colleagues to review, discuss ideas, and follow students progress from a distance as their schedules didn’t make it easy for them to meet. Once the project was done, Carole and her colleagues met to review the success and failure of the overall project. “[Their] greatest success was proving [they] could collaborate on a unit using Guided Inquiry despite the limitations of fixed library scheduling.”
This article showed that if a librarian is willing to think outside the “fixed library schedule” a collaborative unit could not only be designed but implemented successfully. I found this article helpful in showing how as a librarian I don’t have to be limited by a fixed-schedule to be able to collaborate with a classroom teacher to teach a lesson. I liked the idea of a spiral action plan; though the classroom teacher and the librarian wouldn’t be in the classroom together, they wouldn’t be teaching a lesson individually. The entire lesson would be continuous process of planning, acting, and reflecting both by the teacher and the librarian. I liked the idea that as one stopped the other one would pick up where the last one left off. Both were using their expertise but together. I highly recommend this article as many of us librarian are in a fixed-schedule environment.