Get ‘Em While They’re Young: The Embedded Elementary School Librarian

Your Name and Title: Briar Sauro, Librarian, Grades 2-4    
Library, School, or Organization Name:  Berkeley Carroll School

Area of the World from Which You Will Present: Brooklyn, NY, USA

Language in Which You Will Present:  English

Target Audience(s): school librarians, students in library science programs, administrators

Short Session Description: An overview of the work our school has been doing to firmly embed the librarian in the classroom in an effort to better teach our students the research skills they require.

Full Session Description:
There has been much talk of college students and their tendency to rely on simple Google searches. How can we start as early as possible to teach students how to be smart, efficient researchers amid constantly changing technology? Embed a librarian in the early grades!

It’s been an exciting couple of years at the Berkeley Carroll School Library, where teachers and librarians are collaborating in new ways thanks to technology, flexibility and a desire to find the best way to help kids research. Third and Fourth graders no longer have much “old school” library time, but instead work with the Computer teacher, the Librarian and the classroom teacher to learn the research skills necessary for their Social Studies projects. The change in the structure of library classes happened at the same time as the school’s switch to Google Apps, which has been an integral part of the success of the collaboration.

This session would talk about the variables that made such a change possible. I would also share some examples of the projects we have been working on as well as some of the difficulties we have faced. Participants would also have the opportunity to discuss what they have been doing to embed librarians in their own schools. This, in its infancy, is messy work that requires a willingness to make mistakes, close collegial relationships, administrative support and the imagination to try things in new ways.

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