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On Thursday, June 30, 2005, at 06:36PM, JOHN HENLEY
<jhenley9@BRESNAN.NET> wrote:


>Any suggestions regarding how to encourage collaboration between the 

>school librarian and teachers


I want to agree with Mary Alice's suggestions     Work with the
living!!!     Bend over backwards to provide good service!  Then it's
time to collaborate!


I have been in my school almost one year and have found that I needed to
start small. Know what services you can provide and do so exceptionally
well. In all things have a vision of the ideal library environment and
the ideal collaborative relationship and start moving towards it. Then
you know when to say yes (which for me was almost always) and when you
can say no. Having a clear vision means you can say no with an excellent
reason that is sound for educational and practice reasons. That way you
rare "no" is given for sound reasons and teachers will return with
another request at another time. 


Teachers don't realize what an asset you can be so start by providing
excellent service with a smile. Any time you are asked to do anything
work out the best way it can be done to suit your goals and the person
making the request. One thing that happened very early on was I was
asked to bring books in to school to have prize winners select actual
books for prize giving. I could see this was very problematic so I
agreed to help and offered a solution of working with two local
bookshops and having prize winners go there to select books then we
collect the books on a certain date. This worked so well for all
concerned (including the local book shops). It was a positive outcome
and the teacher involved now collaborates with me on other projects
including working with her classes. 


Whenever there is an opportunity to be helpful, welcoming and positive I
see it as a chance to show teachers they can rely on me and my team to
support them. For a while it involved small tricky tasks but once you
have shown you are able to help and very well, then you have the
credibility to come and assist on other ventures. I am no where near
where I would like to be with teacher collaboration but already I am
doing much more than I was when I first started and news is spreading
very quickly that I am available to help teachers and students. 


Also book talking has lead to many teachers asking me to help them with
promoting books to their classes. I found that be reading my way quickly
through good teenage fiction and some gripping non fiction I quickly had
a range of books I could book talk well and see them all walk out the
library with very keen readers. I recommend books to teachers for their
personal reading as well. One teacher says to me I have never put her
wrong yet - what else can I suggest?


Being new to the staff myself last year I thought a good place to start
was with other new staff members. So I began a regular "New staff
orientation to the library" afternoon tea. Provided great food and
coffee and promoted all our services and collaborative opportunities as
well. This worked well too and my first few collaborative ventures were
with the new staff to the school. I have had some established staff
members come and ask to participate at the next one.



Hope this helps. Would love to see more posts on this subject




Amanda Bond

Teacher Librarian

Takapuna Grammar School

P O Box 33 1096

210 Lake Road

Takapuna, AUCKLAND


ph +64 9 489 4167 xtn 253 fax + 64 9 486 7118




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