Ohio school librarians have some really great websites and we want to highlight a few that we think are All-Star School Library Websites. Why is it important to have a good library website? "Making libraries more visible on the web has two benefits: improving the service for the ones who are already committed to the library...and giving libraries the opportunity to reach those who never—or only sometimes—think about the library" (Fons). Much of the research on library website design is focused on academic and public libraries but proponents of the PreK-12 Virtual Learning Commons would argue that a school library's online presence is equally important because "it serves learning 24/7" (Schaffhauser).
This week we're focusing on Jackson Local Schools in Stark County. Jackson Local has 2 District/Building INFOhio coaches: Christina Conti and Sarah Hamilton. D/B ICoaches are education professionals who have been certified to provide professional development on INFOhio tools and resources in their school building or district.
Visit their school library websites here:
Here are just a few of the things we like about their school library websites:
On their elementary library website, Jackson Local uses recognizable icons to link to resources. Elementary students who might not yet be able to read the word "BookFlix" can recognize the picture of someone reading a book that looks like a computer. INFOhio has some graphics you can use in the INFOhio Toolkit.
2. Links work
When a user visits a website and finds a dead link, it can be a sign that the site isn't updated. The icons and links on the Jackson Local sites are working and up-to-date. INFOhio maintains a list of electronic resource links that will make sure your users can get to the right place.
3. Social media integration
Jackson Local's middle school library isn't just using Twitter; they've got a Twitter feed embedded on their website! If you've been hesitant to use social media for your school library, check out the Learn With INFOhio webinar recording, Social Media in the Classroom: Engage Students & Modernize Learning.
4. Easy access to local materials, INFOhio resources, and public library content from school library websites
Make it easy for your students to get the most out of your library collection and the resources they can access from INFOhio and their public library.
5. Access to school libraries on main district website
Work with your technology department to make sure students and parents can access your school library from the district website, your learning management system, and anywhere else students and parents connect to your school online.