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Giving Students a Place to Choose

harrypotterlibraryNo two ways about it—students need access to books. And to be the best readers, they need to choose the books they want to read.

What better place to find books than libraries—those magical places in communities, schools, and classrooms? Imagine the library in The Shadow of the Wind (The Cemetery of Forgotton Books) or in Jasper Fforde’s second Thursday Next mystery, Lost in a Good Book, Hogwart’s Library or your local book repository!

In 1987 NCTE passed the Resolution on Improving Library Support in the Schools,“urging legislators and school officials to provide funding for credentialed librarians in every elementary and secondary school.”

The Council followed up with the Resolution on Supporting School and Community Libraries
in 2005.

“Resource-rich school libraries and credentialed school librarians play key roles in promoting information literacy. They help students acquire critical thinking skills and increase their global awareness. Educational research demonstrates that the services of professional school librarians, well-funded collections, and rich digital resources enhance student achievement. These research studies show that, when classroom teachers collaborate with full-time, credentialed school librarians to design, implement, and assess instruction, student achievement increases significantly…”

And, the just- published Statement on Classroom Libraries recognizes

“the specific educational benefits of classroom libraries to students because they
• motivate students by encouraging voluntary and recreational reading
• help young people develop an extensive array of literacy strategies and skills
• provide access to a wide range of reading materials that reflect abilities and interests
• enhance opportunities for both assigned and casual reading
• provide choice in self-selecting reading materials for self-engagement
• strengthen and encourage authentic literate exchanges among young people and adolescents
• provide access to digitized reading materials that may help to foster the development of technological literacy skills
• facilitate opportunities to validate and promote the acceptance and inclusion of diverse students’ identities and experiences
• create opportunities to cultivate an informed citizenry”

Libraries of all sorts give your students the chance to get the book.