The first day of school is a wonderful time. I usually wear something extremely vivid, bright, and distinctive so people can send families towards me down long hallways for directions. This year I have an early morning post for duty near the breakfast hall so the majority of our students pass my way. How fun to have so many children rush up to greet you on the first day and ask if they get to check out that day?!
It’s so important for us to be visible throughout the school, not just in our own book domains. If I’d been hidden in my room doing the thousands of tasks that pile up around a school library information specialist, I’d never know how much I matter to the individuals of the school. Parents are our fans, too. Being visible on the first day and reminding everyone how much you count on their volunteering and support for the bookfair helps build our fanbase.
I carry a clipboard the first week of school listing every child and their classroom so I can help the lost sheep return to their flocks. If you venture into our hallways, you will find caring adults taking children’s hands and happily leading them back to those new teachers with the difficult names.
The children entering first grade had developed such a bond in kindergarten from coming to the library at LEAST twice a week last year, that they know the library is a safe, welcoming place to go when they need information. Children who wander from their teachers during tours, bathroom breaks, and marches to related arts know that they can come to the library to find their way home again. The office is at the front of the building, but we are in the center with a big smiley face on the window, "welcome back" banners above the door, and smiles on our faces.
It is GOOD to be the librarian, known by all students, parents, and teachers and an essential information person in our building.