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How to Improve your School’s Library Media Center

Updated on May 30, 2016
Rosie writes profile image

Rosie was an elementary school teacher for 13 years, teaching grades 3-5. She is now a Library Media Specialist in an elementary school.


What a Library Media Center Should Be

A library media should be the center of a school, a place where energy and excitement abounds. It should be a place where questions are welcomed and answers are always within reach. Children should want to go there because it is inviting and full of resources that can easily be accessed. Students should want to go there because they know it will provide them with the knowledge they are seeking and they will be guided along the way by an expert in information resources. The library media center should be a place where students can find the answers to everyday questions and where an abundant amount of resources are readily available. Students should also be able find a novel to read in a quiet and comfortable corner, a place to escape for a short period of time.


What a Library Media Center Should Contain

In order for a library media center to offer quality resources and services, and offer an inviting environment, it should contain a reference area, a storytelling area, an instructional area, a computer center, and comfortable quiet places to enjoy a book on one's own. In addition, displays of student work should be present, giving students ownership of a place that is made for them. There should be a large amount of current and relevant teacher resources that teachers can access easily and use to enhance instruction in all subject areas. It should provide multiple, up-to-date technologies that provide Internet access, an automated card catalog, multimedia production capabilities, on-line and multimedia resources, and an area for group instruction in technology and research.

Great Examples of Fun and Inviting Furniture for the Library Media Center

Instant Improvements that Can Be Made


Students should easily be able to identify where things are in the library media center. For instance, the reference desk should be clearly labeled and easy-to-find. All types of media should be grouped logically, various book genres should be clearly present, and computer stations should be clearly identified by purpose.


Everything should have its place and be in it, so that patrons can always find what they are looking for. Items should be grouped logically. For instance, the reference print section should be kept in the same area as the computers used for research. The reference desk should ideally be in the center of the library providing quick access from any point. There should be several places where students can read independently, away from areas of instruction and storytelling. A library media center should be clean, orderly, and clutter free.

Comfortable Spaces

The library media center should offer fun and comfortable seating for children in a school library setting. Children need to enjoy their reading time and look forward to their visit to the library. There should also be a variety of seating, such as tables and chairs for completing written work, bean bags or small upholstered sofas for children. In colleges and community libraries, it is just as important to provide a variety of comfortable seating choices as well.

Online Resources

There are many resources available for librarians to purchase and they are quite expensive. Fortunately, there are a wealth of free resources available online. These resources need to be utilized and shared with students and faculty. They also need to be at their fingertips; they could be placed on the desktops of the computers in the computer center and brief instruction guides can be present for individual use. See the article below for some of these free resources.


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    • Rosie writes profile image

      Rosie writes 5 years ago from Virginia

      Thanks eHealer! I really want to add my own photos - will be working on that task this week. I can't wait to be a librarian so that I can put my suggestions into action. Thanks for your comments!

    • eHealer profile image

      Deborah 5 years ago from Las Vegas

      Great photos! Well done and interesting. The library should be inviting and encourage children to read. Useful hub with interesting ideas. Voted up!