With schools across that country transitioning back to in-person models after nearly a year of bouncing between remote, in-person, and hybrid models, we understand that what your school will look like when you return full-time is on your mind.
We know that this shift of “going back to normal” is causing anxiety for teachers, librarians, and students. We hope to make this shift the tiniest bit easier for you by offering ideas on how you can promote rejoining collaboration between students.
The Safe Activity For Building Student Community
StickTogether is the perfect icebreaker for anxious students as they start to return to school under the current circumstances. Our physical and virtual posters let students collaborate to reveal colorful images that provide a collaborative, stress-free activity. We are proud to say that StickTogether is a safe activity to use in the age of COVID.
For our physical posters, we recommend giving each student a set of stickers to apply to the poster. You can simply cut them into small sections and store them in envelopes, bins, or bags until ready for distribution. Our poster is large and can easily accommodate two participants at a time with some distance.
Not ready to dive into physical posters just yet? Virtual StickTogether takes the lettered grid system and shrinks it to fit your computer screen. With over 45 images in our Gallery, you're sure to find an image students will be interested in. To build community among your students look at this idea from Shannon McClintock Miller which is called Let’s StickTogether Friday, where students work together in teams to try and complete their StickTogether first.
Get Students Involved With A Friendly Bookmark Competition
Everyone loves a friendly competition, especially when it involves drawing a colorful bookmark inspired by your favorite book! BookPeople of Austin, TX did an amazing job at creating a Bookmark Content for their patrons.
Get started by setting up a display that has your competition’s rules, deadline, and the supplies students need to create their bookmark. Don’t forget to offer an awesome prize to the winner! What about having the winning bookmark printed and distributed throughout the school?
Create Teamwork With A Library Scavenger Hunt
Play is essential for children, not only does it help them work on their problem-solving skills it also allows them to build friendships while collaborating. Scavenger hunts have students work together on a complex task where they all work towards a common goal.
Assuming students have not visited the library in quite some time, a library scavenger hunt will promote students to collaborate to relearn where things are located in their library. Download this Library Challenge Printable from Brightly and pick a challenge for your students to complete. Watch as they collaborate to discover new books and friendships.
Cultivate Conversations By Organizing Book Clubs
Have you ever attended a book club and found you have the best conversation? Rich discussions like these connect students with the experiences of others. They allow students to engage on a deeper level which leads to greater collaboration. By grouping students together who don’t know each other but are reading the same book, you will cultivate GREAT conversations.
There are many ways you can organize your book club, but here is one example to get you started. Have the group of students pick a book they are all interested in reading. They should collaborate to set up some “rules” such as how much they will be reading and when they will meet next. As they read, have students come up with questions that can be asked during their next discussion. These questions will inspire meaningful conversation. Find more tips from ReadWriteThink for starting a book club here.
Have Fun And Continue To Make The Library A Safe, Collaborative Space
It’s important to make your library feel welcoming to students and teachers. Your library is the heart of your school community and making it a safe space is so important.
We know that your library will look different this year, but we challenge you to lean into the fact that you’re making a difference for your students no matter what your library looks like.