As a librarian and as a leader within the school, it is crucial to strike a balance between effective advocacy, marketing, and communication in order to achieve the goals of the library program. My school strives to position students to participate in collaborative learning that meets the demanding skill sets needed of 21st century learners and globally responsible citizens and to do that it must make curriculum planning between teachers and the librarian a priority. For the past two years I have expressed the need to establish time to collaborate with teachers to design and co-teach engaging inquiry learning experiences which will meet individual needs and empower students to be critical thinkers. This also means I must provide leadership and advocate for a strong school library program to meet local, state, and national education goals as evidenced in artifact 2, the Advocacy Plan.
Within the Advocacy Plan, I established two objectives. The first objective was to collaborate with one new teacher in each grade/department during the school year in order to plan and co-teach inquiry learning experiences. The strategies used to meet this objective were participating in weekly Professional Learning Community (PLC) meetings with subject/department teachers, academic coach, and administrators to understand instructional content progression and reflecting on meetings & setting up collaborative planning times with selected classroom teachers. Teachers quickly saw the value I brought to the table as an instructional partner while developing inquiry learning experiences. The second objective that allowed me to advocate and market my strengths and library resources was the creation of a list of supplemental resources aligned with curriculum standards that were distributed to math and science to aid in lesson design. The development and implementation of an advocacy plan ensured the growth the school library program. I demonstrated leadership and used innovative methods to develop on-going partnerships with students, teachers, parents, administrators, and community members. Enacting a vision that supports the needs and values of all stakeholders can be accomplished with diligence and perseverance.
The Flipped Instruction assignment featured in artifact 1 highlighted my efforts as a leader to advocate, showcase, and drum up interest in my role as a knowledgeable collaborative partner. Using flipped instruction to appeal to the ever pressing demands of time constraints placed on teachers I created a video with a classmate in LIS 635, “Library Production Services for Library Programs” in which we crafted concise demonstrations. Blendspace provided a new platform for explaining how to utilize the Resource List feature within the online Destiny catalog to research and curate library resources that align with standards. Because teachers were able to access the Blendspace presentation in advance, they were able to come to the workshop with questions for trouble shooting and ideas for classroom and lesson design implementation. As a result, the flow and mood of the workshop was more upbeat, allowing me the opportunity to differentiate my support for teachers to create a more meaningful experience.