Social Impact

Librarians take time to get to know their at-risk students

While working in collaborative partnerships with teachers, librarians may also take time to get to know their at-risk students by applying specific strategies that meet individual student needs. These strategies include:Developing library collections that include universally designed resources on a variety of levels and in a variety of formats to meet the unique needs and learning styles of at-risk learners (examples include bilingual titles, graphic novels, and interactive books)Developing library collections that include culturally relevant curriculum materials based on students’ backgrounds, languages, experiences, and interestsProviding opportunities for students to become engaged and feel successful in their reading (examples include book clubs, reader’s theater, poetry slams, and Teen Read Week)Educating themselves about at-risk students and providing information literacy instruction and library services that can be customized to their learning needsMaking the library a welcoming and supportive place for students to come before, during, and after school by including comfortable reading areas, posters, and creative signageInvolving the community by encouraging active participation from parents and community leaders through programming and/or tutoring services

School librarians collaborate with the educational team

Using their knowledge of the overall curriculum, technological expertise, and the ability to locate resources, school librarians are in a unique position to collaborate with the educational team to teach and evaluate at-risk students… Furthermore, caring and compassionate librarians can make school libraries places where at-risk students’ differences are acknowledged and respected.

School librarians offer information literacy and technology instruction

School librarians offer information literacy and technology instruction that is crucial for 21st century learners, particularly marginalized at-risk learners who may not have access to resources and computers in their homes. Furthermore, school libraries can provide students equal access to print and digital resources to help close the gap between privileged and at-risk students (Martin, 2008).

Emphasis Is Being Put on the Need for Literacy Development at Out-of-the-Home Setting

Traditionally, emergent storybook reading and emergent writing in the home have been seen as the major site of literacy development (Sulzby, 1991), however because so many children are in preschool situations and because so many families have [Limited English Proficiency], more emphasis is being put on the need for literacy development at out-of-the-home settings.

Library Outreach Programs Essential to Those People Unable to Use the Library Site and to Those Living in Public Housing

In this context [Nespeca , 1995], library outreach programs gain essential importance serving those who do not have the opportunity to use the libraries on site. The fact that library outreach programs are important for the people living in public housing homes is clearly stated in Kinney’s (1996) Ph.D. thesis and this naturalistic inquiry reveals that story mobile service has significant positive effects on children’s emergent literacy skills in these homes.

Public Libraries Provide Vital Early Literacy Development to Low Socio-Economic and Minority Children

Libraries are places that are free to everyone regardless of race, ethnicity, culture, language, or age. They are open to the public 7 days a week. Because low socio-economic and minority children are at risk in term of early literacy development and because books and literacy materials are less accessible to poor parents and their children, public libraries’ role as a free, public provider becomes even more vital to meeting this population’s demands for literacy materials and support.

Libraries have been working with families for years

Libraries have been working with families for years within and outside of libraries, providing access to print, motivating young children to read, and making connections with schools.

Libraries collaborating with community organizations ensure children’s success

Libraries can collaborate with schools and other community organizations to ensure children’s successful language and literacy development and to help bridge the gap between home and school often experienced by culturally diverse students and families (Hull & Schultz, 2001; Sanders, 2001).

Public librarians were providing early literacy opportunities to young children

This study investigated how 26 Maryland public librarians were providing early literacy opportunities to young children and their families through their outreach services… All librarians knew the importance of forming home, school, and community partnerships and were working collaboratively among these spheres to help children succeed in school

Libraries Support Families and Family Friendly Literacy

Schools and community organizations, such as libraries, can serve to support families, as well as provide direct literacy experiences to children and youth that complement family practices (Epstein & Sanders).

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