There is an article that has been floating around the internet for awhile now called How a School Library Increased Student Use by 1000% . At first glance the article looks really incredible, and helpful for all the librarians out there that are looking to change up their "traditional library" and include a makerspace. The school did a total redesign of the space and added technology, new furniture, a green screen and more. Students and teachers started to utilize the space much more because it allowed for more collaboration, creativity and the ability for people to connect and grow. All great things!
The problem is this "library" does not have a full time certified librarian in it. This district and many many others (including the South Orange/Maplewood School District, where I use to work and where my child goes to school) made the decision to eliminate certified librarians. One of the many arguments I hear is that with the Internet and technology there is not as much of a need for a librarian... and who needs a librarian in a makerspace. These argument is so misguided and wrong for some many reasons but I do think this letter by the American Library Association, American Association of School Librarian, New Jersey Association of School Librarians, Dr. Joyce Valenza, myself and many more experts in the field does a good job explaining why we must have certified school librarians in every school.
This leads me to the point of this post, should we continue to call the the space a library if there is no certified librarian in it? I am starting to think we should not. What do you think? What would you call it instead?
I am so excited to share that my book is now available from pre-order from ABC-CLIO. It is coming out in August! To pre-order a copy click here!
I was talking with my dear friend Samantha Morra @sammorra about the 3D printer we have at school and expressed to her that I would love to have more students be able to use it. She mentioned to me a project that she does with her students where they take drawings they made and are able to see them come to life as 3D prints! Well I just had to try this! Is is amazing & easy to do. Here is the direction sheet that Samantha give her students.
It really is that simple!! I am working with an art class now and we are trying it out!
Elissa Malespina is the Middle School Teacher Librarian in Somerville and a Presenter, Author and much more. The views are my own. Find my full resume above.