A number of years ago, the Massachusetts School Library Association (MSLA) was formed, to provide education, training, information and assistance to the students, teachers, and librarians of our schools.
Their goal was to strengthen the profession of the school librarian, while publicizing the importance of a strong library program and it's impact on student achievement.
From the very beginning, the vision of the MSLA has remained focused. “All Massachusetts schools will have inclusive, accessible and supportive library programs, managed by credentialed school librarians, who provide equitable opportunities for every student to learn and succeed.”
The MSLA promotes leadership and provides the resources, instruction, and collaboration to maximize student learning. These days, it is the job of our school librarian to introduce and encourage our children to appreciate reading and good literature.
It is in our school libraries, that today's children develop the skills to become users of the vast amount of information and technology available to them. Each year, since 2004, the MSLA has held a themed bookmark contest, for students across the state.
Their idea is for our boys and girls to better understand themselves and the world around us. School librarians inform the students of each year's theme, and ask them to create what they think would be the perfect bookmark for the occasion.
The children, and their works, are divided in to four categories, depending on their grade level. Division I (grds. K-1) – Division II (grds. 2-3) – Division III (grds. 4-6) – Division IV (grds. 7+).
This year at the Oakdale Elementary School in Dedham, nine “school finalists” were chosen for their creative work. School librarian/media specialist Meghan Nels, submitted the student bookmarks, themed: “School Libraries – Books and Beyond” to the panel of judges at the MSLA. Along with others from around the state, judging will take place at their annual convention in Sturbridge, Ma. on March 3, 2013.
Winners will be announced and there will be an awards ceremony at the Massachusetts State House on March 26, 2013. So for now, congratulations to the Oakdale winners and good luck in the finals.
Division I winners – Nate Chaplin, Soraya Gonzalez, Grace Bayiates. Division II winners – Matthew MacPhail, Olivia Hanley, Anna Duff. Division III winners – Kara Kilroy, Alexandra Piscitelli, Hannah Curran.