The daily life of a Middle School Library Media Assistant.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Before School Started

We start back to school a couple of weeks before students. Earlier this summer, I had worked on processing the new science adoption textbooks, and though most of them were done, (Biology – 450 texts; Physical Science/Earth Science and Chemistry – 300 texts each; and assorted other science books) there were still some left to do plus more books were starting to come in for other classes. Over the summer we still receive our magazine subscriptions and there were 3 boxes full of magazines to check in, process for library use and deliver requested copies to teachers.

For those of you unfamiliar with processing – here are the steps we take:

1. 1. Open the book up to break in the spine. Stand the book on its end (the spine) carefully opening front and back covers down to the table, take a section of pages from each end and open those down to the table and repeat until you reach the center. This is when I find manufacturing defects and can set those texts aside to be returned to the publisher.

2. 2. Stamp the books for Sprague. Top and bottom of page ends, inside the front cover and in the back.

3. 3. If I haven’t already set up the computer to print barcodes, I need to go in, set up a new Title and enter ISBN, publisher, author, title and price. Then I can go out and print barcodes and numbers for each text.

4. 4. Then we number each book, sharpie black on inside front cover, top and bottom of pages when the book is closed, and place a barcode inside the back cover. For texts that are heavily used we will cover the barcode with a plastic strip for preservation.

Soft cover books need contact paper covers as well as regular processing and that takes about 5-7 extra minutes a book (so, a set of 10 books about an hour, not to mention wrestling with rebellious contact paper!). I usually set up an assembly line on our workroom table and do about 8 books a set. Then the books are placed on the shelf and if necessary, other texts are moved to make room.

We also cleaned up books that had been brought in at the end of the year. Some of the old science texts needed to be withdrawn, other books were missing barcodes and needed to be checked against the system and re-entered. Teachers came in requesting materials and had to be checked out. We shipped out borrowed texts from other schools and requested others to be sent for the new semester. Cases of books to be checked in, making sure each invoice matched. 8 boxes of Russian books left with a sign to be ‘stored’ – we don’t have room! So we tracked down that they were to be sent to surplus. E-mails coming in from teachers on the status of books were all read and responded to. Books brought in over the summer (3 full carts worth) all put away. Renumbering shelves for the books that had sat up on top of bookcases all summer, adding books into the ‘repair’ hospital. And I’m sure there were more things we accomplished that I’ve forgotten about!

I also began compiling a list for teachers to bring in their students to pick up texts. That way, we could have the books out, on carts, waiting for each class to come in when students start September 3rd (the 2nd was only for freshman).

Our Teacher Librarian, Mrs. Hardey, decided to repaint the library and we got in the new paint, blues and greens, so when we were finished for the day, we ‘volunteer’ our time, haul out the paint and work on painting the library. We hoped to be done before school opened, but didn’t quite make it. School was ready to begin!

No comments: