PLANNING A LIBRARY SESSION
1. Reading time: 10 mins
This is the quiet reading time where every child read books. This practice is done by every child of the class. One is asked to read individually. Those who are not able to read text try to weave the story through pictures in the book. Also, the facilitator asks the children to explore new text/books.
2. Read Aloud by Children: 10 mins
This time is allocated for children to share their story that they have read in the reading time. At times children choose to share a story that they have read before. This helps child to gain confidence and feels a sense of achievement after delivering a good read aloud. Facilitator tries that all children get a chance to share their story on alternate days. Those who cannot read/ articulate text choose to share story in their mother tongue and use pictures in the book to share their own story and this exercise enables the child to share stories by placing their experiences parallel to illustrations in the book.
3. Storytelling by Facilitator: 10-15 mins
This is the time when the facilitator share a through read aloud (refer to previous blog to know how a read aloud is planned) and ends it on a high to begin with the activity.
4. Activity: 25 mins
So here the facilitator largely divides its time into three parts namely: I Do, We Do and You Do. These components focus upon engaging the child where maximum sense perceptions come into action. So, in I Do- facilitator explains the activity while doing it for the children. In We Do- the facilitator and children both perform the activity. Also, in this part the facilitator ensures peer learning through varied groups. In You Do- the children are into the action where they perform the activity on their own and the facilitator focuses upon helping children to consolidate their learnings from the session. The You Do part ends with any kind of worksheet or written work that the children do in their notebooks.
The library offers a unique experience to the children as it offers a safe space for children to express what they understand out of pictures and text in the storybooks. A session plan becomes crucial at a nascent stage when a child is engaging with books in the library for the first time.
For children of age till 6 or 7 years it is important that they engage with books that provide them a closure in the story. So, a session plan is carefully designed using books and activities that have a closure at the end. Similarly, for children of age group 8-14 as they are able to understand cause and effect of a plot then the session plan may include activities which are open ended and offers space for the child that allows their own thoughts to reflect in the session.
Over the period of 7 months, I have observed that children who struggled reading and comprehending the text are now able to articulate their thoughts and have the confidence of struggling with the text. Similar observations were shared by other fellows working in two schools. The reading time and time for Read Aloud by children complement each other and they are totally driven by children. Both these events have been very critical in the success of libraries in the schools.
The session plan is carefully designed keeping in mind the learning level of the children and learning outcomes decided by NCERT. It underlines some of the important outcomes like developing a child's interest in reading literature, building proficiency in the language, comprehending what they are reading, etc. which are crucial for a child studying in class I-III to engage with the text in an experiential manner. Over the year, we have been improving the session plans with various nuances of making books accessible to children, genres of books, etc and asking children to share what they articulate from an image to a text and doing a read aloud amongst themselves.
With time we hope to add more nuances in the session and modify it to maximise opportunities of learning for children. To give your suggestion kindly mail us at below mentioned contact details: