What Does the Librarian Do in the Library All Day Anyway?

Posted on October 27, 2009

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Mention the fact that you’re a librarian to most people, and 9 out of 10 times, they’ll respond, “That must be great, getting to sit around and read all day.” I can only dream of doing that, because my days are instead filled with quite a variety of tasks and duties.

For example, here’s a few of the things I did in the first four hours of my day today:

* changed my old email subscriptions to my new work addresses.

*checked my email, and responded to any emergency requests.

*A first grader came in with a note from his teacher, which I read, responded to, and sent back with him to his classroom.

*I answered a phone call from a local resident  interested in donating books to the library.

*Helped two teachers find a stack of books for 3 year olds that featured “concrete nouns starting with G or H”. Try looking that one up! 🙂

*Drew a quick princess picture for a preschooler.

*Helped another teacher find a book on The Creation Story.

*Scheduled a time to conduct the Teddy Bear Party with a wonderful teacher and the kindergartners.

*Helped another teacher with the email settings on her new account.

Helped a middle schooler when the printer went all out of whack while printing out his current event.

*Greeted another middle schooler on her way to drop a note off at the office.

*Set up a weekly library time with the three year old preschool class, and discussed the curriculuum.

*Greeted my First Grade Class

*Listened to Five Minutes with My First Grade Class, also known as “Everything you absolutely positively HAVE to tell Mrs. L. right away or your head will explode” 🙂

*Reminded students of the author we’d been studying, Mrs. Polacco

*Read Mrs. Polacco’s amazing book, The Keeping Quilt

*Discussed the art work, and whether the story was fiction or fact.

*Helped students locate other works by Mrs. Polacco.

*Helped students select age appropriate but fun books for checkout.

*Checked out each students’ books.

*Left behavior prizes on desks of 1st grade students for excellent choices during library time today

*Saw a teacher in the hall and inquired about her baby;

*Updated my schedule for work, home and my daughter’s school for the next year and a half on the new Google Calendar

*Answered a query on my librarian’s listserv for popular novels for 8th grade boys

*Sent an email to my principal regarding our TV Production schedule

I’m sure there are many things I left out, such as “got hug from cute little kindergartner”, discussed new book with faculty member, and more, but this should give you an idea of the many and quite varied tasks I do as a librarian.

On other days, I’m filming the students and editing the footage. Sometimes I’m repairing damaged books. (Makes the students a little nervous when I slit the book open and break open the spine!) And frequently I’m adding newly donated or purchased materials to our online catalog.

Add updating my blog, posting to the Faculty ning, decorating a bulletin board, working on lesson plans, collaborating with teachers, selecting items for purchase, and straightening chairs, and you get an idea of what a day in the life of a school librarian is like. Never the same, and definitely never boring.

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