Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Elementary Library Lesson Plans: Resources For Other Newbies

Because they are re-doing tile and working on plumbing at the elementary school, I haven't been able to get back in to work on the library space for quite a while.

My Type A brain is going bonkers because I'm not quite done, yet I can't get in to finish.

So, what's a girl to do?

Working on lesson plans was the best that I could come up with under the circumstances.  I can recall my mom working on them prior to the start of school every year -- and she taught for more than 30 years! -- so that she'd be organized for at least the first few weeks and not have to scramble for lesson ideas.

Since this is my first year in the elementary school library, and I have a range of ages that I'll be teaching -- from Pre-K 3 year olds to 6th grade 11 and 12 year olds -- I thought being organized would be a survival skill for the first few weeks until I get my bearings. 

Over the course of the summer, I've picked up several books on library lessons and fun ideas for getting things across to different age groups on the Dewey Decimal System (remember that?!?) and parts of a book and all sorts of other useful basics.  And, per usual, it's turned into a personal research library of sorts.

I started thinking that this sort of information could be useful for other elementary library newbies as well.  So I decided to put some links together for other folks who might be following the same path this year:

-- The Book Whisperer: Awakening the Inner Reader in Every Child
 -- Complete Library Skills, Grades K - 2
-- Complete Library Skills, Grade 3
-- Complete Library Skills Grade 4
-- Complete Library Skills, Grade 5
-- Complete Library Skills, Grade 6
-- 57 Games to Play in the Library or Classroom
 -- Liven Up Your Library: Creative and Inexpensive Programming Ideas (This one was a gift from a reader. Thank you so much!)
-- Better Than Book Reports: More Than 40 Creative Responses to Literature (This one was also a gift from a reader. You all rock! Thank you!)
-- Fun-Brarian: Games, Activities, and Ideas to Liven Up Your Library!
-- The Reading Zone: How to Help Kids Become Skilled, Passionate, Habitual, Critical Readers

Plus, I've been digging around online and have come up with some great websites that have free information for downloading:

-- Library Sparks
-- Elementary Library Routines for Storytime
-- 25 Ways To Obtain Attention From Children In A School Setting
-- Hanover County Library Lesson Plan Book
-- Loudon County Library Resources

Hope this is helpful for others.  I'm still working on my lesson plans, but I'm hoping to get those lined out by the end of the week, at least through most of September.

Honestly, it takes a lot to find a theme that will work across an age range from 3 to 12, and I'm not certain that I can carry that sort of thing forward more than a week or so.  I'm not expecting them to learn the same information, just trying to figure out how I can decorate for visual excitement without alienating a whole segment of the kids on one end or the other of the student ages.  But at least I'm thinking about it, and that's a good enough start for me at this point.

PS -- Here is an update post on library lesson plans with what I've decided to do with the first three weeks of school.

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(Photo via wonderfully complex.  Love this shot!)

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