Student looking at books.

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Effective school library collections provide access to a wide range of information and stories with authentic perspectives, which help students understand themselves and their world.

Why your library collection matters

Your library collection — print, digital, and other resources — supports students’ literacy and learning needs. These needs are central to your collection development decisions. When your collection acknowledges and respects the diversity of your school community it sends a powerful message about how students are valued as individuals.

Strong and successful school libraries require broad collections of resources in many formats and enthusiastic, trained librarians to support students in using and applying information resources to build new knowledge.
The new school library, National Association of Independent Schools (2013)

How do you develop and use your collection to support learning, promote reading for pleasure and enhance student well-being?

Collection management

  • Develop and use an ongoing cycle of collection management and development, to ensure that your library collection responds to the changing needs of your community.
  • Consider the part that mātauranga Māori — a Māori world view, Māori knowledge and values — and kaitiakitanga (guardianship of information and stories) play in developing and managing your library collections.
  • Select resources for your collection so that it is balanced and inclusive, can support and extend learners, and caters for a wide range of student interests and abilities.
  • Seek input from students, staff and the school community into your collection development.
  • Ensure your resources are curated and organised so they are easily accessible for all learners.

Using your collection

  • Use library staff expertise and advice about information sources and literature for children and young people to support teaching and learning across the curriculum.
  • Have library staff lead programmes that enable learners to identify, evaluate and make effective use of print and digital resources.
  • Promote and share a wide variety of reading materials with the school community, through library-led activities such as book-talks, displays, and the use of social media.

Key questions

  • How effective are your library collections in supporting teaching and learning, the achievement of your school’s literacy and reading goals, and creating a school-wide culture of reading for pleasure?
  • To what extent do resources in your library reflect and support biculturalism, and the diversity of learners in your school community?
  • What processes are followed to ensure the collection is relevant, balanced, engaging and curated with learners in mind?

Collections and resources
Lending service
Teaching tools and resource guides