17 October 2006

Celebrating School Libraries

School libraries - almost every school has some form of a school library. To paraphrase a quote by American novelist Shelby Foote, a school is just a group of classrooms gathered around a library. Now we need to turn the attention to something that is rarely done for school libraries. It is something that many teacher-librarians find difficult to do - we need to promote ourselves - we need to celebrate!

We can celebrate our programs by showcasing students' projects in a number of ways, including displays in the library or office display cabinet and publishing written work in the school newsletter or on a website. Why not approach the local newspaper to have students' work published in the weekend paper? What about the local media showcasing the actual unit in action?

But the best way to celebrate school libraries is on the fourth Monday in October. International School Library Day was proclaimed in 1999 by then International Association of School Librarianship president Dr. Blanche Woolls and reaffirmed last year by the current International Association of School Librarianship president, Peter Genco.

International School Library Day is an opportunity for school libraries to showcase their role in the promotion of reading and literacy skills as well as information literacy skills, which help to provide the foundations for lifelong learning. School libraries matter and make a difference!

International School Library Day provides the school community an opportunity to celebrate the importance of the school library. It is a day where teachers, students, parents, administrators and of course teacher-librarians stand up and show the public that school libraries matter.

On Monday October 23, 2006, school communities around the world will be celebrating the eighth International School Library Day with the theme of "Reading. Knowing. Doing".

Tell us about your activities!

If you have any events or activities for International School Library Day, please use this form to provide information to IASL. Your activities and projects will then be listed in this International School Library Day section of School Libraries Online. Not only will this help to publicise your activities, but it will also help colleagues in other places who are looking for ideas for this special day.

Rick Mulholland

International School Library Day Coordinator, International Association of
School Librarianship.

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