New School Year – New School

This summer I made the decision to leave Shamong Township School District. In the three years that I spent in Shamong, I was able to make many wonderful transformations to the library. These changes included:

  • Revitalizing and genrefying the collection
  • Adding monthly STE(A)M Challenges to the library programming
  • Adding a school library Makerspace
  • Writing several grants to fully implement the Makerspace
  • Helping the school become a certified New Jersey Future Ready School
  • Providing technology-related professional development to the staff

Many people have wondered why I would leave this position. Simply put it was time to move on. About a year prior, I started really missing working with elementary-aged students. Most of my career years have been spent as an elementary librarian and I had a yearning to return to this level.

In July, I accepted a position with Delran School District in Delran, New Jersey at Delran Intermediate School. I will be working with grades 3-5. The position is a combination of teaching students information literacy skills and co-teaching with their computer teacher. Since I have a background in technology, as well as library these will be a natural fit.

The library was in need of some TLC, so I began putting some time into making the space amazing. Below are some images of how the space looked when I began working on the space.

The space was filled with things that did not belong there, such as student binders, extra computers that were being recycled, and much of the space was in disarray. I noticed right away that there did not seem to be a nice, natural flow to the Nonfiction. It was placed in many different areas of the library and was a bit confusing. I also decided that some of the extra shelves that were pushed to the back of the library by the windows gave the library a cluttered unorganized look. I decided to move the Fiction to the tall shelves and the Nonfiction to the low shelves. I also moved the professional books to a back shelf that is accessible to teachers but out of the way for students. It took me approximately two weeks to reorganize and move all of the books to their proper locations. It was a ton of work, but well worth the effort.

The end result is a beautiful, well-organized space. I am so excited for my new students to arrive and see all of the awesome changes. Some of the biggest changes included:

Moving the filing cabinet from the entrance of the library and replacing with a wooden bookcase that will be used as a display.

Moving Fiction to the tall shelves and displaying exciting Fiction titles.

Moving Nonfiction to the low bookcases, and picking exciting and interesting books to display on top.

Moving a free-standing shelf area by the windows. Before this was located in the main walkway and made the library look crowded and unattractive.

Adding decorations, including decorating my desk. This provides a welcoming atmosphere.

In conclusion, I am very excited for this new school year and hope to bring great things to my new students and staff at Delran Intermediate School.