Since I was unable to attend Friday’s class last week, I’ve been enjoying reading what everyone has been reflecting on in response to class, especially about the “learning commons”. There have been so many good points made, such as the learning commons is just a new name for the library but not a new concept, and that we should be focusing on creating the whole school as a learning commons, not just one spot. I was a little surprised at how many people were not very into the idea, and then a little nervous about my excitement by it and wondering if my reading comprehension was off. I didn’t get these vibes that everyone else was getting.
I still stand by my excitement, although I think all points are great and helpful in forming a better idea of the role of a school library, and the professionals that it might be including. I also think that throwing in new resources, and having fancy chairs, while cool aren’t what makes a great space for learning. It’s the people, the vision, and constantly working to do our best.
For me, that reading was about collaboration, and the possibilities that might come from working together for helping our students and community. It was also a reminder of the unique large learning space the library has to offer.
I agree that each classroom should be a hub of learning, and that the entire community should be one excited about all types of literacies. But I think the library space, and specialists like the SLMS are able to offer unique ideas and practices from that of a classroom teacher. Every system has a heart that helps it keep going, or a control/command center. Why not start giving recognition to the library as that heart and why not lead together?
Maybe I’m a bit wackadoodle, or too idealistic, but I am excited about the possibilities for us, and I”m excited by the thoughtful conversation we’re able to have together. For me, I dream big, so I can push myself to keep inching towards innovation. Does that mean that one day you’ll see me running a learning commons? Who knows, by that point it might be called something entirely different. What matters is what’s the goals, the purpose, the mission, and the people. A name is just a name. So I’ll take my closing lines from Shakespeare:
|What’s in a name? that which we call a rose|
|By any other name would smell as sweet;|