“Great Expectations”

Library expects new changes

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Libby Sullivan

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His Last Stand
April 1, 2017

New librarian. New rules. Plenty of change.

With the start of last school year, librarian Barbara Johnson made a multitude of new changes to the school library, but her efforts did not stop there. She has plenty of new plans to change the library for the better this year.

Last year, Johnson began a process called “weeding.” The process of weeding includes removing older, less popular or heavily damaged books to make room for new titles and show off more popular books. By the end of the 2016 school year, Johnson weeded over 6,000 books and purchased around 1,050 print books and 150 ebooks and audiobooks.

“I want our students to see the great books we have in the Creek Library,” Johnson said. “I also had a lot of ‘favorite books’ that I wanted our Cougars to have access to in our collection, so there was a lot of book ordering.”

Along with the massive changes to the titles in the library, Johnson worked to reorganize the arrangement of the fiction section. Similar to the organization of a bookstore, the fiction section now has genres separated into seven different color-coded sections: historical fiction, realistic fiction, mystery/horror/suspense, fantasy, science fiction, classics and adult fiction.

“Each area is color-coded and alphabetized so that students can find their favorite areas [or] authors,” Johnson said. “Try a new type of story or fall back in love with an old favorite.”  

Last year rumors of technological additions to the library developed, leading to the definity plans made this year. To start, Johnson purchased digital cameras and video cameras for students to use on school projects. She also plans on expanding the amount of charging space available for students as well as ordering different phone chargers and USB cables for students to use. Johnson plans to take another larger technological leap by incorporating rentable Kindles and iPads for students.

“The 21st Century library is about more than books, it is also a place to work with technology, collaborate with others and become knowledge gatherers,” Johnson said. “With the bulk of research happening on computers instead of within books, we must adapt our environment to meet these needs.”

Along with improving the content and technology in the library, Johnson hopes to increase student involvement as well. She plans to introduce students to her “Community of Readers” philosophy and bring together students and staff through books. On top of that, Johnson plans to host a freshman Book Battle program and a book challenge every semester.

“The Book Battle is going to be a lot of fun for Freshmen and a challenge for me since [I] have not done this at the high school level,” Johnson said.

Overall, Johnson hopes to inspire students to become their best and succeed. She says she wants to make a bigger impact on students’ lives, help them appreciate the uniqueness of the school and encourage students to embrace school spirit.

“I love that our library has so much potential for change but it is really the people that fill the library that make a difference,” Johnson said. “Having the library in the center of the school like we do means that it can become the center of each student’s education if they want to grow and become successful. Creek is a great place to be.”