Just keep trying things!

I’ve shared some of my struggles this year so far on previous blog entries, so I wanted to share an update highlighting some of the things I am trying to implement that I hope will help make small steps towards progress.

The week of Halloween, I saw several of my library friends on social media sharing their candy corn counting contests. This was something I knew I could easily do — so I grabbed a mason jar, stopped by the store on my way to school for a bag of candy corn, and set up a box for guessing.

Having this set up at our circulation desk forced more students to interact with us, which was GREAT! It was quite entertaining to see how serious some of our students got about their guesses.

Students couldn’t pick up the jar — but there was still a lot of counting, measuring, and consulting of the Magic 8 Ball.

I also hosted a Literary Pumpkin Decorating Contest. Students were invited to bring in their own pumpkin, and I provided the paint and supplies for decorating. Although I only had two students participate (therefore they both got prizes!), it is still something I will try again next year. I hope that rallying more support from my English teachers in the future (and starting the competition sooner before pumpkins disappear from stores) will get more involvement next year.

I’m looking for more opportunities to use holidays (especially random ones) to create programming.

For National Stress Awareness Day, we hosted some mindful activities in the library and had a pretty decent turnout.

I’m also trying to use our library Instagram account to do more promotions of library activities.

I have two more events coming up this week as we roll into Thanksgiving Break:

I have a few new ideas that I’m adapting from others that I plan to start after Thanksgiving Break. My friend Elizabeth Kahn started doing a weekly “This or That”, which I think will be another great conversation starter to have at our desk. Here’s hers:

Do you have any passive programming ideas that have worked well in your library? Isn’t it interesting how the little things break the ice to build relationships in our schools?

4 thoughts on “Just keep trying things!

  1. Wow! Tiff you have great ideas for your students. I sure you have a good participation. I like the title ” Just keep trying things” is the real key. You give an opportunity to the students to bring their lunch in the library and read their books, to participate to a contest, decor a pumpkin,… great ideas to make connection.

  2. Hi! I was really intrigued by your post, I love all the ideas you have to get students into the library, even though they are not all about books/writing. I am currently taking some teacher-librarian courses and it is really neat to see how you are using simple activities to create relationships within the school. How important is it to get the other teachers promoting your activities to their classes? Do you find that since implanting these activities you are seeing the same students come back into the library for work/research? Thanks!

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