Saturday, 10 December 2016

Gearing up for Summer Lending

I have five days left of school and we've just completed our stocktake (apart from the nagging of the slowpokes to return their books).  Now my attention is turning to our summer lending.  We've been lending over the holidays for six years now.  We started with a trial, by issuing books to our Year 4s on the last day of term, with a signed parent permission slip.  Now we open for one afternoon a week over the holidays. We lend to parents as well as students, in the hopes of building a lasting relationship and having them continue to borrow when we are open on Friday mornings during the term.  There's no permission slip anymore, but students have to be accompanied by their parents.

We have also built a relationship with Hamilton City Libraries.  For the past three years, we have run their summer reading programme from our library.  We promote and administer the programme and in return they provide us with the necessary materials and also come in for one afternoon in the holidays to run some activities with our students.

On the week before Christmas we offer "mystery books", an idea borrowed from Hamilton City Libraries.  We choose library books and wrap a couple up and put them under our "tree" with a tag indicating what age group they are aimed at.  We try to pick some of our newer, shinier books with a broad appeal.  This is always very popular.

The quieter days tend to be the weeks straight after Christmas and New Year's when a lot of families are away.  This year for our 4 January opening we are going to have our origami books out, along with some origami paper taken from old library books.  I hope that will be a nice activity for families to do when they visit, and also one that won't need a lot of supervision so I can still issue books at the same time.  I'm lucky in that Esther, our library assistant, will also be around, but her hours are for doing projects over the holidays so I try not to pull her away from that too much.

This year we are also running a Reading Wonderland competition.  The Reading Wonderland is the revamped area of the library that was completed this year.  To celebrate our first year with this lovely new space we trying to encourage our students to come up with creative ideas about the area.  Here's the poster to explain more:

I had to redo it to include things like the maximum length of the items and how many times students could enter.  Hopefully I have covered everything now.  I have no idea how it will go but hopefully it will provide students with a fun, creative outlet over the holidays.  Then I will find out how to turn the best entries into a book.  I suspect it will be more time-consuming than I anticipate, a side-effect of most of the projects I seem to come up with!

Last year I made a summer reading brochure to advertise what the library had to offer over summer.  This year I decided to use our newly established TT TV channel to promote the various library activities.  At the last minute we decided not to do an episode in the final week, which meant we made a bigger episode than usual this week, containing three different segments about the library!

             *start at 3:17