Thursday, September 17, 2015

Small Bites: Setting the Tone for a Productive Program

The kids are back and teachers too,
the workload is overwhelming,
and I have so much more to do.

The last few weeks this has been my anthem. As teacher-librarian we too feel the weight and stress of a new school year.  It's real, it's here, and it can be scary. But how we manage time and not let it manage us is one of the most vital components of being an effective librarian.

I by no means have all the answers but here are a few tips for you to consider:

1)       In the book, Being Indispensable by Ruth Toor and Hilda K. Weisberg they state to formulate 3 goals that will frame your year. Keep these goals at the for-front of your mind and base major programming decisions on these pre-determined goals.  

2)       Establish a vision and mission statement that guides your program. Check out our MNPS LibraryVision Statement for ideas.

3)       Create a weekly and/or daily schedule and minimize activities/events that interrupt this schedule. Most importantly STICK TO IT!  Make sure to schedule in “brain breaks”. Take time to walk around in the building and/or get away from the chaos.

4)       Establish policies and procedures for when students come to library and when you do collaborative lessons, etc. Remind teachers you want students to visit and to have collaborative lessons but this must be done in a strategic and well planned out way.

5)       My favorite: Under Promise, Over Deliver. Consider your schedule for the week and set a realistic timeframe for when you can meet a request.

I keep telling myself that it will slow down, it’s the beginning of the year. Though this is true: there will always be plenty to do. So remember to just take Small Bites.

MNPS Librarian

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