Wednesday, June 3, 2009

21st Century Library

I have mentioned earlier that I had an experience that has had me thinking about current libraries. A library is essentially a repository of objects for learning. In our modern age more and more of those learning objects are digital resources that are online. This means that there is a very different approach to the role of a Library Media Specialist. Some ideas I have for creating a 21st Century Library:
  • Videos in the Library: When I taught in the classroom, I had a collection of videos. Some times collections of collections. For example I had a great series I used part of but couldn't show the whole 16 hours. What if a student wanted to watch it? Why didn't that series reside in the library, but no... I kept it in my office on the shelf except for the 20 minutes every semester that I used it. So... Video (and DVD) Collctions in the Library for students to check out (even better, would be digital copies to share, or online but... in the meantime)
  • Used bookstore from culled items: Every library has to cull items. I think it would be great to allow students to run a used bookstore from those items. This might work especially well with Special Education or At Risk students. It could even include an Amazon.Com storefront for more than one school site, possible an entire district could cull items into the same online store.
  • Book Trading. I would love to have a place where students could trade their own books. Someplace where students who have finished a book they no longer want could trade it for a book they do want.
  • Book Clubs: It would be ideal to have book clubs, book clubs with a f2f and an online component. This would allow teachers, librarians, and students to share reviews of books, and educational resources
  • Online collaboration with other librarians. I would love to see more collaboration among librarians, a forum for librarians to share the books they are reading, great websites, videos, and other things. Ideally, there would be f2f meetings and an online tool (or tools) for doing this. Delicious accounts, or Diigo accounts, an online forum or a group.
  • iPods or MP3 players for check out. I am also a fan of Playaways. iPods and some other multimedia players would also allow for loading up a bunch of video for a teacher to use and allow them to play directly from the iPod to a TV or Projector, with the appropriate cables of course.
Clearly there are lots of other things I would love in a library of the 21st century, but these are a few.

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