What is the importance of our school library?
Reading should play an important role in all our lives. Our school Library provides us with a healthy environment for learning about the world around us, be it through fiction, non-fiction or poetry. It is a calm, quiet and relaxing space where there are no limits on imagination and where children can learn about the world around them, whilst also improving concentration skills.
What is the Library Curriculum?
The main focus of our Library is, unsurprisingly, to read. For this reason we encourage children to read and read and then read some more. This is our primary aim. Children’s independent reading is tracked and blocks of reading time are set aside to work on different reading skills. These include: to use a range of strategies including accurate decoding of text, to read for meaning; to understand, describe, select or retrieve information, events or ideas from texts and use quotation and reference to the text; to deduce, infer or interpret information, events or ideas from texts; to identify and comment on the structure and organization of texts, including grammatical and presentational features at text level; to explain and comment on the writer’s use of language, including grammatical and literary features at word and sentences level; to identify and comment on writers’ purposes and viewpoints and the overall effect of the text on the reader; and lastly, to relate texts to their social, cultural and historical contexts and literary traditions.
The Library curriculum also mirrors the IPC topics for the younger readers and there will be plenty of opportunity to read around the many different topics taught in the classrooms. For example, children in Year 2 will be encouraged to research and read some of the many child-friendly biographies we have in the Library when studying the IPC topic, People from the Past. In this way, children will be able to broaden their understanding of the topics they study in the classroom.
There will also be plenty of opportunities for children to learn about how to handle and care for books, how to navigate the Library, as well as how to choose appropriate books, express preferences and learn about different genres and authors’ styles.
How often do the children have Library lessons?
Each Class has one Library lesson a week lasting 45 minutes. During this time children will also have the opportunity to take out a maximum of 4 books to take home for the week.
What kind of books do we have in the Library?
The Library is well-stocked with books from famous children’s authors and some that are not so well-known. We have a very large fiction section where you can find hardbacks and paperbacks side by side, categorized A to Z by the author’s last name.
We also have a very up-to-date and child-friendly non-fiction section. These are categorized by subject areas using the traditional Dewey system, each book numbered between 0 and 999. Children use these books mainly when reading around the IPC topic studied in class, but they are also very popular for reading for fun and broadening knowledge about the world we live in.
000 – Computer science, information, and general works
100 – Philosophy and psychology
200 – Religion
300 – Social sciences
400 – Language
500 – Science
600 – Technology
700 – Arts and recreation
800 – Literature
900 – History and geography
As well as our fiction and non-fiction sections, we also have a Poetry Corner, an Early Readers section, magazines packed with short stories that we receive each month from the UK and Reference Books. Thanks to contributions from the Parents of St. Michael’s and the healthy Library budget all books can be kept up to date and in the best possible condition for our users.
How should we behave in the library?
The Library, of course, is a place to read and loud noises are distractions when reading. To avoid letting people get distracted or lose focus when reading in the library, it is agreed that anyone using the Library will use their quiet voice. Snacks should not be eaten in the library. Nobody wants to find a jam sandwich in the middle of a good fairy tale!