April is here and once again it’s National School Library Month. Yay! Trust me, I love it, but it’s always a little disappointing because April is also when our testing starts at school, so that means our school library is closed every day until May! Yikes! It does make it a little difficult to celebrate because not only are the doors closed, but I’m a proctor, so I can’t go out, either.
So is this just a Florida thing, or are other school libraries closed for testing now, too? I think it just may be us, because if every school was on the same schedule, I would think ALA would change it from April. I’d like to try and do something to celebrate this month and spread the positivity from the media center, but lately I’ve been discouraged because students aren’t participating in contests and events as much anymore. I’ve asked students in the past what is stopping them from entering, and many of them say they just don’t have the time to make a book trailer, or create a poster. Is it overload or apathy? Or both? I’m not sure. I think it may also be a little bit of a high school thing, but I see other high school librarians creating really successful programs. But in fairness to me, these are always mandatory, teacher-led programs. So maybe I’m doing OK.
Wherever you live, try and take some time out and celebrate the school library. I loved my elementary school media center, I worked in TV production in my middle school one, and I barely ever stepped foot in my high school one. I take these experiences to heart now that I work in one, and I try and make it the most welcoming and warm place in the school. Even when we’re closed for testing.