Book news and events

Libraries Week 9th – 14th October 2017


Libraries Week

This week is Libraries Week, where we celebrate all of our different kinds of libraries – including school libraries, public libraries and university libraries.

School libraries, in particular, are a great resource for teachers and when run well, can really help to foster a love of reading in the school. Unfortunately, many school libraries are struggling to survive in the current economic climate, which is a real shame because there are so many benefits to having a school library. So given the week that’s in it, lets take a look at some of these benefits:

Children can be involved in the running of the school library, which is a great way to boost their confidence and leadership skills, and they become terrific reading champions for the school. Many school libraries run a Pupil Librarian Award, as do some national organisations (Schools Library Association). The pupil librarians can be made aware of this as they begin their role, and they can also be involved in the decision on who gets nominated for it.

School libraries often run reading clubs, such as Chatterbooks clubs, which was set up by the Reading Agency and aims to encourage reluctant readers to read. School librarians can also involve children in local book awards events. The Sussex Coast Schools Amazing Book Awards was set up by a small group of school librarians from West Sussex. It is aimed at secondary school students, who vote for their favourite book from a long list created by librarians and publishers. The Southern Schools Book Award also takes place in January each year. This award was also set up by a school librarian and is aimed at Year 9 students in the south of the UK.  Generating a “buzz” about reading, through reading clubs, book awards and author visits, a good school library can really boost literacy levels in a school.

Schools library servicesThe Schools Library Service, run by the local authority, can also be a fantastic resource for teachers. Schools subscribe to the service and in return can borrow books, artefacts, costumes, photographs and other resources to help them teach the curriculum in an exciting and engaging way. A history lesson can be taken to a new level when costumes are involved or artefacts are on display. Many schools library services also run local book awards and can assist with arranging author visits to the school. Some offer professional librarians to be contracted to work in the school for a couple of hours a week, thus making it more affordable for schools with budget constraints. Tower Hamlets Schools Library Service in London leads the way in offering this service. For information on school library services in the Sussex area take a look at the following websites:


West Sussex School Library Service

East Sussex School Library and Museum Service


So, there you have it – a quick glance at some of the benefits that school libraries and school library services can bring. This week, there are many events happening in libraries throughout the country, many of which will be promoted on twitter – watch out for the hashtag #librariesweek. If you have time, do drop in and support a local event.  And, if you are lucky enough to be working in a school that has a library, cherish it, support it and let the children reap all of the benefits that it brings.



PenguinScience resourcesPenguin






One comment

  • Chloe
    October 9, 2017 - 8:27 am | Permalink

    Wonderful, thank you Laura! Libraries are indispensable places which you should celebrated and used as much as possible!

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