Welcome Day – welcoming new students and their families to MHS

On one of the windiest days we’ve seen in many years, Melbourne High School opened its gates on a Sunday to welcome the 2017 cohort of students and their families to their new home. As they entered through the main doors of the old building, perhaps overwhelmed by its history and tradition, they were greeting with the fresh, smiling faces of our assistant principals, Pelissa Tsilimidos and Marcus Sharp.

Earlier, in the dark corridors of the same building, assistant principal, Andrew Sloan, was already rounding up the troops – students who had given up their Sunday to act as guides or help out in different parts of the school in order to showcase some of the many things the school has to offer.

Parents of existing students set up stalls in the dining hall, including Friends of Music who transformed the place into a cheery market place. How inviting were their stalls and wares!

Memorial Hall was filled many times over by new students and their families who were addressed by principal, Jeremy Ludowyke, on the theme and motto of the school, ‘More than just marks’,  as well as by the school’s registrar, Rosemary Dickson, the current school captain and vice-captain who provided a student perspective, and by a representative from Parents & Friends who provided the invaluable parent perspective.

 

The library was open from 8.30 am until well after 3pm, and hosted about 15 large groups, as well as individual family groups, all keen to see MHS library spaces, and find out how the library supported the learning and wellbeing of their sons.

Head of library, Pam Saunders, made everyone feel welcome and drew on her experiences as a past parent, sharing ‘inside’ information and advice ranging from parking tips for whole school functions (such as parent-teacher interviews) to promotion of the very special whole school music event – The House Choral Competitions. She talked about House spirit and conveyed her love of the school as she transitioned from parent to teacher librarian and head of library.

I showed the rich range of online resources developed by the library, in particular, our website (Libguides) which provides both subject- and skill-related content, as well as how parents and students might keep up with what is happening in the library and school through our social media accounts: Twitter, Instagram, our library blog, our library Facebook page and art blog.

Parents and students were keen to find out more about the Interest Groups we run in the library: Library Assistants, Book Club and Writing Interest Group (WIG). The Writing Interest Group also has a blog (Unicorn Express) in which students publish their work to a local and global readership of over 100 people a day.

Study and life skills, such as time management, goal setting, mindfulness, note-taking and other important skills are also supported in our website, and parents were happy to hear that, should they ever need support, their sons would be recommended to work with teacher librarian, Catherine Morton, in academic mentoring sessions.

All in all, a great day, and we look forward to our new students settling in next year and becoming part of the MHS community.

  • Tania Sheko

 

 

 

And … we’re back! Year 9s’ first day.

We’re back on deck and it’s all about the year 9s today; it’s their first day! Welcome to you all! We hope you feel at home here. Certainly a large number of year 9 students have made themselves at home in the library this lunchtime. We’ve run out of UNO but there is also Lego, jigsaw puzzles, chess and more. Of course, there’s also getting to know people during these activities. Oh, and some students are even reading!

 

Visit to The Library at the Dock

We took the opportunity to visit The Library at the Dock on a report writing day when our library was being used for the GAT in the morning. What a beautifully designed community building on a site with impressive views from all angles.

From the City of Melbourne website:

Library at The Dock is a three-storey building, 55.3 metres long by 18.1 metres wide, and is made from engineered timber and reclaimed hardwood.

Read about the building’s sustainability features (PDF, 600kb).

As well as a traditional library collection, the library and community centre offers an interactive learning environment and a state-of-the-art digital collection, multi-purpose community spaces and a performance venue that holds 120 people. Connections to Docklands’ rich maritime and Aboriginal heritage is embraced and celebrated with facilities to support local historical research and educational experiences.

Apparently the building was pre-fabricated in Austria and put together in 60 days on site by 6 carpenters. I hope I remembered that information correctly.

I took photos from all angles. As you can see, the library has plenty of space and light, glass everywhere, beautiful wooden surfaces and tasteful furnishings.

Image Image (1) Image (2) Image (3) Image (4) Image (5) Image (6) Image (7) Image (8) Image (9) Image (10) Image (11) Image (12) Image (13) Image (14) Image (15) Image (17) Image (18) Image (19) Image (20) Image (21) Image (22) Image (23) Image (24) Image (25) The returns sorter –

 

Image (26) Image (27) Image (28) Image (29) Image (30) Image (31) Image (32) Image (33) Image (34) Image (35) Image (36)There is a Makerspace! and of course a 3D printer –
Image (38) Image (39) Image (40) Image (41) Image (42) Image (43) Image (44) Image (45) Image (46) Image (47) Image (48) Image (49) Image (50) Image (51) The children’s section was so much fun! Image (52) Image (53) Image (54) Image (55) Image (56) Image (57) Image (58) Image (59)

 

Obviously this library is completely out of our financial range, but it’s always good to take some ideas from well designed spaces.

Welcoming our parent volunteers to the library – afternoon tea

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Yesterday we enjoyed the annual parent volunteers afternoon tea in the library. We are so lucky to have such an enthusiastic group of parent volunteers who graciously donate their time to help us out.  Our head of library, Pam Saunders, passed on valuable advice about all aspects of the school, having been a Melbourne High parent herself, and also President of the Parents and Friends Association. We appreciate having our principal, Jeremy Ludowyke, and assistant principal, David Smyth, join us to chat in an informal setting. Jeremy talked to the parents about the value of participating in the community of the school, and the resulting enrichment to the school, parents and students. Thank you to Denise for organising the lovely afternoon tea, and for overseeing the roster. We look forward to seeing our parents in the library throughout the year.

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Do you ‘like’ our new Facebook page?

I’m convinced that if you take the time and effort to do something, then it should be effective. Sounds obvious, I know, but here’s an example to elucidate. I’ve been writing posts in this blog for over a year now, and although I’m pleased to say that people are reading it, I noticed that it’s mainly teacher librarians from other schools. Whilst this is fabulous, and I appreciate the readership and feedback, I’m still wondering how to promote things to our own school community – the students, teachers and parents. Promotion is such an important part of doing anything at school; you could be spending all your time writing posts and documenting what’s happening with photos but if it doesn’t reach your primary audience, then something isn’t right.

So it occurred to me that a Facebook page might be the way to go. I know that seems obvious but it really isn’t going to be effective unless you know that enough people are on Facebook. Anyway, I’ve created the page – and here it is. It’s (obviously) called Melbourne High School Library. So far it has 49 likes and 11 friends. It’s a start.

Every blog post will be updated here, and I hope to attract more of our students, teachers and parents to the page, but also my very supportive network, some of whom have already given me the thumbs up. What I love about social media is that it brings so many people in, and I’m happy to see ex-students showing some interest in our new page. Thanks!

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