Librarians are Educators

School Librarians are Teachers, Too!

Learn from a Teacher Librarian!

School librarians, also referred to as teacher librarians or media specialists, do more than shush children, shelve books, and check books out to students. They teach and collaborate with teachers. Many school librarians help students with research projects, teach Internet safety, teach students how to cite information for their projects, teach about a variety of genres students can read and check out, collaborate with the teachers in the school to do lessons with their classes on topics being learned in class, and much more. School librarians are rarely found behind the reference desk. They are sitting on the carpet reading aloud to a group of students teaching a lesson as they read. They are in the computer lab teaching research, citation, Internet protocol, how to find books in the library with the online catalog. They may also be found in classrooms working with teachers to reinforce topics covered in class, teaching students how to find books on their reading levels, or encouraging students to come to the library to enhance that love of reading. School librarians wear many hats!

What Does the Research Show?

Many school districts require that school librarians are licensed as a teacher first and encourage librarians to teach prior to becoming a librarian. This experience gives the school librarian an opportunity to walk in the shoes of a teacher and prepares them for teaching in the school library. School librarians must demonstrate their ability to provide students with an engaging environment and to integrate curriculum standards into their lessons in the library and when collaborating with another teacher. Studies have shown when school librarians take an active role in teaching, learning, and working with others student achievement increases. Students not only learn important academic lessons from the school librarian, but they also learn to acquire a love of reading. The media center should be the heart of the school. This is where learning begins and students learn how to become lifelong learners, learning how to do research, how to use computers, and learning many other skills that will help them as they go through school, college, and begin their careers.
Big image
Students' love for reading and academics increase with each step the librarian takes to enhance their learning.

Image by:

A Few Important Roles of a Teacher Librarian

  • Read to students
  • Engage students in different types of genres
  • Teach students how to research and find texts in the library
  • Teach students how to use technology for research, Internet safety, citing information, and educational programs
  • Book clubs with students
  • Battle competitions with students
  • Collaborate lessons with teachers
  • Familiarize students and teachers with the environment of the library and procedures
  • Help students to find books/magazines
  • Check out books
  • Organize the library


Church, A. P. (2008). The instructional role of the library media specialist as perceived by elementary school principals. School Library Media Research: Research Journal of the American Association of School Librarians, 11

Freeman, J. (2014/2015). Beyond the stacks. American Educator, 38, 32-36

Kimmel, S.C. (2011). "Consider with whom you are working": discourse models of school librarianship in collaboration. School Library Media Research, 14

Mashriqi, K. (2013). The importance of a school library media specialist. Journal of Research Initiatives, 1, 63-66

Walter, S. (2008). Librarians as teachers: a qualitative inquiry into professional identity. College and Research Libraries, 69, 51-71

Image by:

Highly Effective School Librarians Are Master Teachers