HHS Library Quarterly Report

August-October 2013

Life in the library...

It has been a fast first nine weeks in the library! Some things in the library have changed quite a bit since last year at this time, and other things seem to be a constant, no matter what time of year it is.

Students read...

The chart below illustrates book circulations this quarter as they compared to first quarter last year. Overall, circulation was about the same, but I did find some interesting differences in terms of categories of the collection. I find it interesting that there were about 20 fewer nonfiction books circulated this year than last year during the first quarter. Also, the comic/graphic novel collection decreased quite a bit in circulation from last year, which is ironic since I moved the collection to make that section circulate more! Fiction books had more circulations this year, as did the books we requested through Inter-Library Loan.

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As happened last year, every student came at the beginning of the year with his/her seminar to check out a book to read during the seminar period. Anecdotally, I would say there are more students actively reading than last year--i.e., not just renewing the same book each month, but turning in books they've finished and checking out new books to read. That's encouraging, and is a sign, I think, that reading is being encouraged more during each seminar! The fiction circulation statistics suggest that might be true, so it will be interesting to see how that trend continues or not.

In addition to the check outs that happen through seminar, Mr. Broadfoot's class came to the library during this quarter to check out historical fiction books.

To continue working towards having a collection that meets the needs of the students at HHS, 39 books were purchased this quarter. Specifically, 12 nonfiction books were purchased to update that collection using funds from the Hesston Community Foundation. Some of the books purchased are pictured below.

Students research...

There wasn't a lot of formal research that happened in the library during first quarter, but the databases were still used to a small extent. Within EBSCOHost, the database we have access to through the Kansas State Library, 333 searches were performed in August, 26 in September, and 10 so far in October. A new database we have this year is the Opposing Viewpoints database. There were 6 total sessions on that database during the first quarter. I look for that number to increase as we go through the year and more teachers and students become familiar with it as a resource.

The physical and online library...

One of the biggest changes this year as opposed to last year at this point in the year is how different the library looks. One of my goals throughout last year was to make the library welcoming and a little more aesthetically pleasing. I, along with the amazing help of Patricia Deutschendorf, Anne Dare, and several others, worked over the summer to remake the space. I think it's been a good change!

With the new website we are using in the district now, I have also spent some time updating the library website to make it as user friendly as possible. I am always looking for ways to make the online library a place students know they can go to find what they need. I will continue updating it throughout the year.

A challenge for myself this year is to move my thinking from the library being a valuable resource only if the physical (and print) resources are being used to understanding that the library is not just a physical space. The online library and resources can be accessed anywhere at any time. I would like to think about ways I can continue to increase the library's presence online, how to share the resources that are available with staff and students, and how to measure how often the resources are being used.

What's next?

I am pleased with some of what has been able to be accomplished in the past year in the high school library. When I look back at my goals during the first and second quarters of last year, several of them have been accomplished. However, there is always room to improve! I continue to look for ways to collaborate with teachers to teach information, media, and technology literacy skills to students. I also am challenged to find ways to integrate the library into what happens in the school so that the library is more than just a place to pass through or to check out books, but a place for all members of our school community to find the resources that will fill their need.