The Complete Teacher


Getting students involved in your school library

Posted by Janice Scheckter on 29 August 2023, 16:45 SAST
Janice Scheckter photo

Regardless of the age of your students, actively involving them in the running of your library has multiple benefits. It can enhance reading engagement, help with developing a school-wide reading culture, provide students with leadership opportunities, and promote the role of your library within your school. Students like to be heard and will feel valued if you seek their opinions and then act on that information. After all, the students are your ‘customers’ so the library needs to be relevant and provide the things that they want,

Photo by Mikhail Nilov:

Try some of these ideas:

1. Invite students to add books to your library’s wish list.

  • Cover a blank notebook in something bright and colourful and leave it in the library for students to write in their suggestions.
  • Designate a wall or board where students can add post-it notes or write their suggestions using white board or chalk markers
  • Create a simple Google form and share the link. 
  • Buy the books suggested by students as soon as possible – this will make them feel valued and important, as well as making you look super-efficient!
  • When the books arrive, make sure the student who suggested them is at the top of the reserve queue. In Accessit Library you can easily re-order the reserve queue if required.

2. Talk to your students about what interests them.

  • Encourage students to add their favourite authors, genres, series, subjects and keywords.

3. Book buying can be one of the best parts of being a librarian, so let them share that excitement.

  • Consider taking a small group of students on an extra special outing to the local bookshop to help you select new library books, or let students help you with an online order.

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