As I’ve been going through the process of rebuilding the collection and the facility (neat pictures of our “permanent” temporary space to come next week), attending meetings and so forth, one question keeps coming up: what does a 21st-century library look like? How do we plan for what students are doing today and think ahead towards what they may be doing in five or ten years?
Of course, you look to the “experts” (inasmuch as anyone can be an expert in terms of the library of the future): Michael Stephens, Meredith Farkas, Alice Yucht, Chris Harris, Doug Johnson, Joyce Valenza, et al. . But you also have to think about the classroom, because the library is becoming ubiquitous. And then I learn that NAIS is talking about the Classroom of the Future – but no library voice is part of this discussion. So, the question is, how can we get into this discussion?
Our Upper School Technology coordinator and I have butted heads over things like a history class coming to a computer lab to look at websites for the various candidates for president, and I wasn’t included. My feeling is that’s the sort of thing we (librarians) should absolutely be a part of – she feels different. It’s a culture change we’re talking about, and it’ll be a while before we get there. But only if we’re part of the conversation.