Last Friday Melbourne High School staff and those from the inner city (‘City Edge’) – namely, Mac.Robertson Girls’, University High School, Melbourne Girls’, Victorian College of the Arts Secondary School, Princes Hill Secondary College and Albert Park College – came together for a curriculum day focusing on differentiation. We gathered in our faculty groups. How lovely to meet with the inner city libraries again – this time in our library.
We started the day with croissants and strawberries – very civilised. The icebreaker name tags were a bit of fun and helped creative juices flow. How lovely to meet with librarians from our neighbouring schools, to exchange ideas and discuss how we differentiate in the library. Differentiation is intrinsic to school libraries since we cater for different age groups, mixed abilities and learning styles, and the whole curriculum, not to mention information and digital literacy skills. We talked about how we provide differentiation in our collection development, databases, and in our online resources. As an introduction to differentiation and to remind us of the diversity of ways in which people perceive things, learn and think, we watched the well known TED talk by Temple Grandin, who has increased the world’s understanding of the condition of autism with personal immediacy and who is revered by animal rights groups and members of autistic community, perhaps because in both regards she is a voice for those who are sometimes challenged to make themselves heard. Grandin designs humane handling systems for half the cattle-processing facilities in the US, and speaks about how the world needs different kinds of minds to work together (Source). A big thanks to Kat Frame, Liaison Librarian with the University of Melbourne Graduate School of Education, who joined us to talk about the work she and her colleagues do to support students and staff. Kat has created 31 library guides (Libguides) for the School of Education. How valuable it is to develop our relationship with the tertiary sector and bridge the gap between secondary and higher education libraries. This comic is part of Kat’s Libguide on referencing. Denise gave our visitors a taste of Tea Duelling – so much fun always. Jess from The Little Bookroom visited us with a tantalising selection of books we could browse and order.
In the afternoon, Pam had organised for us to visit 3 libraries: The Library at The Dock, Southbank Library, and East Melbourne Library. We are privileged to be able to take time out to connect with our neighbouring schools in person, and also to visit public libraries for ideas on spaces, service and everything in between. Thanks to Pam and everyone organising the day.