The Beginners class visits the Media Center each week for 30 minutes, reinforcing the idea that reading is special and familiarizing them with visiting the library. Story time is the focus of media lessons at this age level. The books are often chosen to tie into the cultural study currently going on in the classroom. Lessons are focused on listening skills, manners in a library setting, illustrations, and verbal interaction about the story being read. Fiction and nonfiction materials are used along with felt boards, puppets, art, and songs to foster a love of reading. The main goal at this level is to support language development and to begin an understanding of the structure and sequence of reading.
Lower Elementary (ages 6-9)
Media classes are held each week for 30 minutes. Reading and literature appreciation lessons are interspersed with lessons on library and research skills. Students are taught about the various sections of the library, how to navigate the library, and the computer skills required to find the books they want. They learn the parts of a book, explore types of fiction and nonfiction, and learn and practice different reading strategies. Lessons may also include games, hands-on activities, and scavenger hunts to reinforce the teaching and to address different learning modalities. Book talks and book fairs are held at various times during the year to encourage our students to become avid readers. Students may also check out books for personal reading or research.
Preschool and Preschool/Kindergarten (ages 3-6)
The Preschool and Preschool/Kindergarten classes have Library/Media class each week for 30 minutes. Story times in the Media Center or classroom are filled with rhymes, songs, and discussions, which help foster both vocabulary development and a love of reading. This continues to build on the skills taught at the Beginners level. In addition, Preschool and Preschool/Kindergarten students learn the parts of a book, how to care for books, authors and illustrators, and story sequencing. They are introduced to the concepts of fiction versus nonfiction and the idea that people read for many different purposes. The books are often chosen to tie into the cultural study currently going on in the classroom. Students usually have time to choose a book on their own and often bring it to the Media Specialist to read.
Upper Elementary (ages 9-12)
Upper Elementary students visit the Media Center each week for 60 minutes. In addition to encouraging a love of reading, the goal of lessons at this level is to help students develop into thoughtful and discerning readers and information consumers. Reading and literature appreciation lessons are interspersed with lessons on library and research skills. Topics covered include locating books in the library (including the Dewey Decimal system), genres of fiction and nonfiction, conducting research, using various resources both online and in print, and evaluating those resources. Using the “Big 6” research steps, the students become more independent and problem solve their queries. Internet safety and information reliability are studied and discussed. Citation of sources is also introduced. Students actively participate through scavenger hunts, shelving, Internet activities, and games. Book talks and book fairs are an important part of the media curriculum throughout the year. Students may check out books during media hours throughout the week.
Middle School (ages 12-14)
Although the Middle School students do not have a regularly scheduled Media class, skills including Internet safety, reliability, validating sources, and citing sources properly are integrated into the curriculum, building on topics taught in the earlier grades. The Media Specialist and Middle School Language Arts teacher regularly consult regarding the curriculum. The Media Specialist is available during media center hours to assist students and teachers in locating materials and conducting research. Lively discussions are encouraged, focusing on netiquette, favorite novels, research techniques, bias found in media, and technological advancements. Students are allowed to check out books during media hours throughout the week.