Teaching & Learning at NYPL
Problem StatementThroughout the New York Public Library system, branches were providing educational outreach and programming, but these efforts depended heavily on individual librarians and methods varied widely from site to site.
The New York Public Library created the Division of Teaching & Learning. By harnessing and supporting the growth of the educational energies and potentials of 86 community sites and four research libraries, Teaching & Learning at NYPL is working to become the primary resource for urban teachers and students. A crucial component of the Division is the newly-formed Education Circle, comprised of library staff from across the system whose mission is: to unite staff of the New York Public Library in their work with schools, teachers and students, to share knowledge and best practices and identify areas for growth. We will draw on the strong relationships, ideas and expertise already present among Library staff to strengthen the Library’s role as an education resource and an educational force in NYC and beyond.
The Education Circle has created unified language for describing the services teachers can access through NYPL and has worked to develop a brochure for distribution to educators, templates to help library staff engage local schools, and a web page dedicated to teaching and learning at NYPL (http://teachandlearn.nypl.org). The Education Circle has also begun internal professional development initiatives for Library staff to learn about new instructional technologies, changing school curricula and strategies for supporting literacy development.
Through pooling contacts and resources, NYPL has strengthened its contact with the central Offices of the New York City Department of Education, in particular its Office of Library Services, to offer professional development, meeting spaces, curriculum materials and other supports in tandem with school-based librarians.