Monday, July 1, 2013

Goodbye, Hello

These are the first pictures I have of my library.

I took them after my interview, about 15 minutes after I was offered the job. I'd gone out to my car, grabbed my camera, and asked if I could be let back in to take a few pictures. 

A couple weeks ago, I said goodbye to my library. 

I thought a lot about whether to think of it and describe it as saying goodbye to "the" library or "my" library--because these are the things you think about as you are saying goodbye to an empty room. I settled on calling it "my library" because what I was saying goodbye to was not that empty room, but to the time I've spent there, and the people I've spent it with. 

About a week before I packed up my office, a recent graduate contacted me to ask for some book recommendations. After suggesting some titles and authors, he said, "Thanks. I told my mom I was going to call my librarian."

No past tense. No definite (or indefinite) article. My librarian.

My library continues to exist, just as I hope my students always think of me as their librarian.

The past six years in the library--and the experiences my students have had there--have been guided by my principles and philosophy of education and librarianship. And this philosophy has been shaped and influenced by thinkers and writers inside and outside of school libraries.

With that in mind, and as I look towards the next phase of my career as an educator, I have created a new blog in order to share the ideas, articles, videos, and conversations that inspire me and shape my thinking about the future of education: When I Run the School

Please check out my first post, and share some of what inspires you. 

Because in reality I don't think of the library I said goodbye to as "my" library--I think of it as "our" library, belonging to students and teachers who shared that space with me. And they shared more than the space--they shared ideas, they shared passions, they shared frustrations, and they shared their hopes. 

Education is not an individual pursuit. Our education, throughout our lives, is shaped by the people we interact with, and the ideas that inspire them. It is what we all bring to this conversation that will shape the future. I look forward to continuing the conversation.