Beyond the Books - A Look Inside Our Library
Our love of the library extends beyond books. Once you pass the entrance, you’re transported into a world of possibility where critical thinking combines with creativity to spark imagination and ignite a love of learning.
We sat down with Head of Library and Information Services, Mrs Nadia Merchant to uncover what makes the CCGS library so special.
Reading between the lines
Whether you’re in Junior School or Senior College, the CCGS library is known as an open, inviting and inclusive space, offering something for everyone.
In the Middle School, Years 7 – 9 have had a specific focus on literacy. To promote deep learning, tailored to each student, the library surveyed them on their reading styles, habits and preferences.
“An interesting finding was that, for some students, one of the only times they read is in the library. We saw this as a unique opportunity to ignite and extend their love of reading,” Mrs Merchant said.
“We restructured our teaching to allow for dedicated reading times and have combined this with suggestions of books for each student based on their previous reading.
“This process has allowed us to connect with students individually and helped foster their thirst for knowledge. If I get new books now, I know who to earmark them for or who to suggest them to. These personal connections make all the difference!”
Thinking outside the book
Recent enhancements to the online digital library have opened a doorway to thousands more books than could ever be housed physically.
“Our extended online digital library, with two additional eBook platforms, means we can curate texts for extended learning opportunities.
“Sources can be collated for our students in a range of broad subject areas. In Religion of the World for example, we have curated a centralised page with links to online resources for each different religion, as well as video and other multimedia content for a comprehensive learning opportunity.
“As they get older, students are taught information skills so that they can easily navigate our digital library and critically select their own sources for use across the curriculum.
“It has also meant that students who have dyslexia or other learning needs, have greater access to information in different formats whether that be physical, audio or visual – enhancing and extending learning opportunities.”
More than a source of storytelling or information gathering, the library is a haven for students to connect, even after the school day is done.
On average 100 students from the Junior School to the Senior College venture through the doors each afternoon.
“It’s a safe, quiet space where our students can read, do homework and study. During break times, children from different peer groups interact, help each other and engage in games, all overseen by our dedicated teacher librarians,” Mrs Merchant said.
A novel idea
Masters of creativity, the library team are always writing up unique initiatives to keep students involved in literature.
Valentine’s Day was also Library Lovers Day where students were invited to go on a blind date with a book, giving a new meaning to the saying ‘don’t judge a book by it’s cover’.
In Book Bingo students pick a number tile which corresponds to an extract of a book. Each tile represents a different opportunity to discover new authors and genres, with the mission to mark off an entire row for a prize.
The Creative Book Challenge uses intriguing prompts such as ‘A book that was written by someone under 30’ or ‘A book becoming a TV series’ to get students reading.