Thursday, August 5, 2010

A Day in the Life of a Children's Librarian

8:30a - Arrive at the library, put stuff away, and turn on computer. I set up the small meeting room for the morning's programs.

9:10a - Check email. I get a reminder about Banned Books Week, so I check out the stuff on the ALA store. I really like this year's slogan and graphics!

9:35a - Our Reference manager stops by and we chat for a bit about upcoming meetings, Banned Books Week, and programs.

9:50a - I have an idea about a Guys Read display and I do a little searching for books we could put on it.

10:00a - It's time for Toddler Time, our storytime for 2's and 3's. T does the program, but I'm sitting in today because she'll be on vacation next week and I'll have to do the program. She shares songs, a few books, and some participation activities with them and then they have a brief play time.

10:40a - We're done with Toddler Time and setting up the room for the next program, when the manager from one of our local restaurants stops by to talk to me about a community event they're hosting. I get his name and number so I can call him back later and let him know if we'll be able to participate.

10:45a - T and I finish setting up for my program.

11:00a - It's time for our Float or Sink? program. This is a program for K-2nd graders. I share a couple of stories with them (Do Like a Duck Does by Judy Hindley and 10 Little Rubber Ducks by Eric Carle) and I do a demonstration with a large, clear tub of water. I have several objects to test out (a pencil, a tennis ball, a plastic cow, a magnet, etc.) and I ask the kids if they think it'll float or sink. Then I put it in the water to see if it'll float or sink. After the demonstration, the kids get a chance to try out their own experiments with small tubs of water and baggies full of different objects. After the test it out, we get back together and talk about which of the objects sank and which floated.

11:30a - T helps me clean up the room and I write up a summary of the program for our files. We keep a binder of the programs we do. We write down what books we used, what crafts we did, what supplies the program used, how much they cost, and notes about how the program went. I record the attendance stats for the program.

12:05p - Lunch time!

1:05p - I'm back from lunch and I get the room set up for our afternoon program. More moving of tables and chairs... tablecloths, etc.

1:30p - I meet a new volunteer who wants to help out with our programs and shelf-reading (hooray!) and talk to a few other people in the library about various things.

1:45p - I burn a CD of images for a lady I'm doing a program with in August. I put it at the desk for her to pick up whenever she gets a chance.

2:00p - Our group arrives for the program. It's a group of 1st-3rd graders from a local daycare and they've requested stories and a craft. We share books about summer and then make a foam visor craft (we had the foam visors left over from last summer).

3:00p - The group takes off and we clean up the room. Happily, we can leave the tables and chairs up for a program we're doing tomorrow.

3:10p - I get a call from a librarian who read about our Life Sized Candy Land program and has some questions. I chat with her about the program for a bit. Librarians are always happy to share ideas!

3:30p - I have a meeting with my boss and two of the other department heads about collection development, particularly our periodicals collection. We're trying to determine if we can stop some of the magazines we subscribe to in order to trim the budget a bit. We look at circulation statistics and plan to do a survey to ask patrons for their input.

4:50p - I'm back at my desk where I send a few emails and read messages from the listservs I subscribe to.

5:05p - I make a to-do list for tomorrow and attempt to clean off my desk (a constant struggle...).

5:15p - I go out and straighten the department, filling up displays and cleaning up the New Book area. We keep books on the New Book shelves for several months or until we need more room in the section. We don't change the status in the computer, but we put a little blue dot on the spine which tells our pages that they get shelved in that section. When we want to pare down the section a bit, we just remove the blue dots and shelve them in the regular sections.

5:30p - Time to head home!