We're celebrating our School Librarians! National School Librarian Day is April 4, 2022 and to highlight all the incredible and important work our school librarians do, we asked Dianne Pang, School Librarian at Kaimuki Middle School, to share some ideas, inspiration, and what she's reading now.
What inspired you as a reader - was there a particular book that you read when younger that instilled that love of reading?
Early on, my mother encouraged my reading by providing me folktales from Island Heritage. Some of my favorites were Momo Taro, Urashima Taro, Kahala, and Pua Pua Lena Lena. I was captivated by the beautiful illustrations and loved the stories. As an elementary teacher, I read these stories to my students and my own children.
As a middle school librarian --there are probably challenges to keeping students engaged - what are some events that you have held to keep students inspired?
Regular promotion of new and/or high-interest works in both eBook (SORA) and printed formats, via in-library materials and activities, the library website, and during our morning broadcast.
School events such as Battle of the Books and Poetry Cafe were put on pre-COVID and during COVID, we’ve gone to online events such as an online visit by Newberry author Tae Keller, and our first-ever KMS Readathon.
In-Library activities such as Book Tasting and voting for the Nene Award for Grade 6
During our new second study hall period (due to COVID), it was decided that some of the time would be used for silent reading. It turned out to be a perfect opportunity to promote eBooks (SORA), regular book borrowing, and tracking reading minutes using Beanstack Tracker
Book Fairs give us opportunities to showcase new books to students and also provide revenue to purchase new books for the library.
What are your students reading currently?
While students still enjoy reading fantasy, realistic fiction books are the most popular. Titles that they have seen on streaming services such as the “To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before” series by Jenny Han are always checked out. We have a lot of donated Manga but are working on developing this popular collection.
What are you currently reading?
I’m currently reading a book given to me by our STEM Coordinator, Daring Greatly: How the Courage to Be Vulnerable Transforms the Way We Live, Love, Parent, and Lead by Brené Brown. The book is based on twelve years of research by Brown and her findings are very relevant to educators. I could connect with many of the concepts and enjoyed her humor and wit when she shared her own experiences. Her book and her TedTalks, are very thought-provoking.
Mahalo nui loa to Dianne Pang for her time, words, and wisdom.