Let's be frank. I'm new at this whole teaching thing. Not only that, but I came by my teacher-librarian gig in an odd way. I never expected to finish my teaching practicum and entirely skip over being a classroom teacher. That's not the way my life would have gone had I changed careers and become a teacher 10 years ago. But, in B.C. right now, we are desperately short on teachers. For us newcomers, it's the best of times and the worst of times. There are so many jobs. But, the pressure to learn in an environment where teachers are hard to find and classrooms are overflowing, drives some new teachers to run for the nearest exit.
Here's how my story goes. I finished my practicum and got on the TTOC board, where I was called out daily to different schools in our district. One day I saw that a school needed a library TTOC. I'd never done library, but at the time I thought it sounded interesting, so I took the job to fill in for the day (or so I thought). I enjoyed the day even though I had no idea how to check out books, organize library lessons, or use the library computer program. I made the most of it and expected to move on and be back in another class the next day.
At the end of the day, the school principal stopped in to see how my day went. When I told her I enjoyed it, she immediately smiled and said, "You want the job?" Ummmm. Say what?
I took the rest of the day to think it over and talk to my husband about the pros and cons. In the end, I accepted and my journey began.
I am still in the same library almost two years later. As it turns out, I was made for this job. Not only do I love it, but I have taken great pride in transforming my space from library to a learning commons. It's been a labour of love. At my school we were lucky to receive two sizeable grants totalling $60,000 for technology, books, and furniture. If you had seen my library when I started, you wouldn't recognize it today. It's a source of great pride and joy in my life.
I want to stay in the library, so this past summer I started my teacher-librarian certification process through Queen's university. I've learned so much about creating a dynamic, engaging, and modern space for my students and I can't wait to share it with you! More to come!