Survived the first week back at school–no kids yet, but lots and lots of meetings. I am TIRED! We have a new schedule that I still haven’t wrapped my head around (8-day rotation); new head of school and other changes in administration; new initiatives; new new new. Usually at this point in the year, I am feeling comfortable and ready, but this year, there is a layer of anxiety with all of the changes. The only one that really makes me anxious is the new schedule, because it will likely dramatically change the flow of activity in the library–I like the schedule itself and think it will wonderful for the kids, but am just nervous to see how it will play out for my particular corner of the world. We’ll find out next week!
Of course, after the summer I had, I am very excited to see what will happen in the Makerspace this year. My goals:
1. Have that space active and hopping during every activity period, by offering a variety of options for kids to sign up for and also some slots for kids to drop in randomly.
2. Collaborate with faculty on projects that utilize the space and materials in the Makerspace, and also on projects involving coding.
3. Continue to learn new things!
4. Listen to the kids and meet them where they are. I have more thoughts on this, and it will eventually be a post of its own. What I want to do better, among many other things of course, is be tuned in to the non-squeaky wheels, the unspoken needs of the kids who might not be using the space yet or who might need something different. One thing I already know to do differently from last year is to provide more structure during activity period for kids who need it–we had some kids who were interested in making but needed more help than I realized in terms of getting started or coming up with an idea. In the first rotation of our Make It activity (a very openly defined weekly activity), the kids just immediately figured out what they wanted to work on and got going, and really didn’t need much guidance. The second rotation was the opposite, but I didn’t handle it well–I figured they would get there eventually on their own, because of how the first group had gone, but I was wrong.
5. Figure out the whole structure/chaos balance for the library. I wrote about this early in the summer. The new schedule really demands that I get a better grip on this, because we are going to have times when the entire middle school is in a free period, and it’s going to be crazy.
6. Remember, always, at the end of the day, that it’s about figuring out and doing what is best for the kids. Every kid is different, so what is best for one might not be best for another. That is both terrifying and beautiful, isn’t it?