Saturday, 15 March 2014

Genre Shelving - The students have their say

With our science fiction and humour books now sporting snazzy spine labels, but still shelved A-Z, I thought it was time to survey the students about whether they thought shelving by genre was a good idea.  I talked with our six Yr5/6 classes (172 students) and then gave them a very short questionnaire.

Off to a good start!  Interestingly four of the five who said "no" mentioned issues with understanding books.

I wish my book recommendation powers were greater but this result reflects how little time I get with classes in the library.  The power of the series reigns supreme but the interesting results for me were those for author and genre.  Even with our fiction collection currently shelved A-Z, so that authors are readily found, selecting by author ranked around the same as selecting by genre.  I will be doing another survey later in the year and it will be interesting to see the impact of shelving by genre on these figures.

17% of our students reported that they didn't find it easy to choose a book to read.  The main reason given was that there were "too many books". 

So there you go - overwhelming support for shelving by genre.  I told the students that if they wanted it I would do it, so on Monday morning I will make the changes and give science fiction and humour their own sections.  We will continue to shelve most of the fiction A-Z and every three weeks we will add a new genre.  This makes it manageable for me, although I must admit I wish I could do it all sooner.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Blogging Meme

Earlier in the year my twitter friend Marnel (@1MvdS) tagged me for this blogging meme.  I was particularly busy at the time but she reminded me about it today and I'm in the right mood so here goes:

The task includes:

  • Acknowledge the nominating blogger
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself
  • Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you
  • List 11 bloggers
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all of the bloggers know they have been nominated.  Don't nominate a blogger who has nominated you

11 random facts about me

  1. When I am engrossed in a book my husband has learnt to call my name a few times and wait a few seconds while I return to the real world   
  2. I enjoy playing badminton
  3. Most of the things that make me busy at work are my own fault as I've had or seen a new idea and want to implement it
  4. My eldest son (12) has just grown bigger than me, by 3cm, and has taken to calling me "shorty"
  5. I can't have chocolate in the house or I will eat it - even the chocolate chips for baking
  6. I can juggle
  7. I enjoy blogging as it makes me reflect on what I am doing
  8. Next week I am going on my first school camp since I was a student and I am dying to try out archery
  9. I absolutely love PD
  10. I am going to be too timid to ask other bloggers to answer questions for this meme
  11. I don't like reading sad books.

My answers to Marnel's questions

1.  What inspires you?
People who are passionate about what they do.

2.  What are you reading now?
"Ophelia and the marvelous boy" by Karen Foxlee.  A fantasy children's novel that was mentioned on a blog at some point.

3.  If you weren't a teacher, what would you do?
OK, so the easy way out is to say librarian, as I'm not a teacher.  But I will be good and pretend the question is "If you weren't a librarian, what would you do?"  I think I would like to train people in how to use technology.

4.  If you could change something about the education system, what would it be?
I would make it easier for children with learning difficulties to get access to the help they need.

5.  When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper and mailed it?
I think several years ago a friend complained she didn't get interesting mail any more so I wrote her a letter.

6.  Android or iPad tablets? Why?
I have an iPad simply because I knew my school were looking at getting them so used that as an excuse to get one.

7.  What do you find hardest to teach your students?
That books go back on the shelves in the right place, the right way up and the right way round. Sigh.

8.  What will you be doing differently this year?
I am running my book club differently this year (see previous post) and really enjoying it.

9.  If you could be fluent in any other language what would it be and why did you choose this language?
I would choose Russian or something else really unexpected just so I could show off when I spoke in it :)

10.  What is your favourite way to waste time?
There are a few reality shows (Masterchef, Project Runway, The Voice) that I like watching when I am too tired to do anything meaningful.

11.  What is your life motto?
I am really not organised enough to have a life motto.

Because I'm recklessly avoiding the last two parts of this meme that is all for this post.  But here is a photo from July of last year, just to prove that it wasn't so long ago that I was taller than both of my boys.