According to the American Association of School Librarians, a division of the American Library Association, April is "School Library" Month. It is a time to recognize and celebrate school libraries and librarians. Librarians are urged to host activities to help their school and the local community. Historically, “School Library Month” goes as far back as 1985, when it was known as “School Library Media Month.”The theme of the first national School Library Media Month was “Where Learning Never Ends: The School Library Media Center.” In 2010, the name was changed to “School Library Month” after a vote by the Board of Directors to change the title of school library media specialist to the school librarian. While school libraries are a great place for a student to check out books, there are so many more services and resources they offer to empower and assist students.
The resources and services available at our Reedley College Library include access to research databases, such as JSTOR, which is a journal storage database with over 12 million academic journals, books, and primary sources, and World Book Online, which is an online encyclopedia. Students can access these databases, and much more, free of charge. Other resources made available to students are computer workstations and access to laptops, tablets, graphic calculators, and STEM-related items including anatomical and molecular kits. The library provides an essential resource for students, especially freshmen because it gives them an option to work on assignments when they don’t have access to technology. This has been a lifesaver for many since COVID-19 became our new reality.
A major resource that we all should be grateful for is the librarian. While it’s difficult to talk to the librarians when in a pandemic, it is easy to be grateful for the work they continue to do. While Zoom has made it very helpful in keeping our academic and personal lives going, it is no substitute for old-fashioned human contact. We are all inherently social creatures, even the more quiet and shy types like me. Personally, I hope to visit the library again at some point and thank all of them in person, and hopefully, you will too.
Another great resource is Ask-A-Librarian, which is an online contact for students to ask librarians a question. The two options available are a Zoom meeting and an online text-based chat. While there is a specific schedule for the Zoom meetings, the chat is available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.
The Reedley College library has events that are useful and engaging for students. In a post-COVID world, these are now available online via Zoom. Library resources include workshops, such as "How to Use Library Databases, Books and eBooks", which help students understand how to utilize databases and books to effectively use for research. An upcoming library event to look out for takes place on April 20th, with guest speaker Dr. Safiya Noble, author of Algorithms of Oppression.
"School Library Month", American Library Association, December 12, 2011. http://www.ala.org/aasl/advocacy/slm Document ID: 6b727bd5-cb97-bb74- 9df9-1f815084214a
"School Library Month History", American Library Association, September 27, 2006. http://www.ala.org/aasl/advocacy/s lm/history Document ID: b531490f08a4- 9f44-857a-71133c6d279e