It is no secret that libraries are important to schools at all levels. Libraries are quiet places to study, they have a vast array of resources, and help teachers develop a curriculum that represents the learning needs of students.
Do you plan library days with your students? Libraries are such a vital part of learning, but many middle and high school classes rarely visit the library. I try to make it a priority to take my students to the library at least once a month. For some students that is their only chance to explore books.
School libraries play an especially important role for middle and high school students. They provide a safe place for students to explore their interests, and they offer a wide range of resources that can help students succeed in school and in life. With so much to offer, it’s no wonder that school libraries are often described as the “heart of the school.”
Libraries provide a safe place for students
Libraries offer quiet places for students to study or do homework. And because libraries typically have a variety of seating options—including desks, soft chairs, and even beanbag chairs—students can choose a place that best suits their learning style. The presence of a librarian also provides a sense of safety and structure that can be comforting to students.
In addition to offering safe places for students to study, school libraries also provide a sense of community. Libraries are often seen as welcoming and inclusive places, and they can play an important role in helping students feel connected to their school. The library is different than a classroom and thus students feel more comfortable being themselves.
Libraries give students a wide range of resources
School libraries offer more than just books—they also offer a wide range of resources that can help students succeed in school and in life. In addition to print books, libraries often have e-books, audiobooks, magazines, newspapers, and other resources that students can access.
Books, of course, are the most obvious resource that libraries offer. A quality library will have a variety of books that meet the needs of the students. Libraries should have different levels of books and a wide range of topics where students can find books with characters similar to themselves. But libraries also have magazines, newspapers, databases, and even e-books and audiobooks that students can access from home.
Many school libraries also offer a variety of resources that can help with homework, such as reference books, online databases, and even librarians who are always happy to help! In fact, many school libraries now have Homework Helpers—a program in which high school students help middle school students with their homework. This is a great way for high school students to get some service hours, and it helps middle school students get the help they need to succeed.
Libraries also provide opportunities for enrichment outside of the classroom. Some libraries host events like author talks, book clubs, Makerspace, and more! These events give students a chance to explore new interests and make friends who share those interests.
Libraries help students achieve academically
It’s no surprise that school libraries help students academically and in life. In fact, studies have shown that students who use their school library achieve higher grades and test scores. And because libraries provide a wide range of resources, they can help students with everything from doing homework to writing papers to preparing for college.
School library programs foster critical thinking, providing students with the skills they need to analyze, form, and communicate ideas in compelling ways. School libraries are learning hubs and homework help centers where students can use technology to find the best information resources.
Libraries help Teachers develop curriculum
In addition, school libraries play a role in curriculum development. Librarians work with teachers to select books and other resources that support the curriculum and meet the needs of all learners. This collaboration helps ensure that students have access to the resources they need to succeed in school.
Librarians are partners with teachers, providing print and digital materials that meet diverse needs and collaborating to deepen student learning. Librarians should be seen as leaders in the school, helping to develop curriculum that represents the population of the school and their diverse needs.
Librarians work with teachers to select books and other resources that support the curriculum. They provide access for students who need more help than their peers, ensuring everyone has an opportunity for success in school.
School libraries provide middle and high school students with essential resources that they need both inside and outside of the classroom. From books and articles to quiet spaces and enriching events, school libraries offer something for all students.
Do you use the library in your school?