Student Snippets A Window Into The Daily Life & Thoughts of SLIS Students


Skills learned from SLT

Peggy Hogan-Rao

  I am so close to being done with my studies at Simmons. When I look back at my courses at Simmons, I feel like all I want to say is thank you. I have one step into the door of working professional and one foot still in the door of graduate student. As I am slowly creeping into the role of a library teacher, I am using the skills that the Simmons School Library Teacher program has equipped me with to be a library assistant in an elementary school library.     In my LIS 406 course Management of School Libraries, I learned valuable skills in outreach to the community. When you work in a school library, it is good to partner with local bookshops for book orders, but most importantly the local public library. In the school where I work now, we are working very closely with the public library’s children’s librarian to give children access to information resources.     LIS 461 the Curriculum and Instructional Strategies for the SLT (School Library Teacher) gave an overview of…

New School Year and New Job

Peggy Hogan-Rao

   Hello, and welcome back to a new school year at SLIS. I have now been in this library science program for three years. I was originally planning to graduate with both my Masters of Library and Information Science this January with my certification to be a K-12 Library Media Teacher. As with lot of other things going on right now, that is not possible. I miss being on campus for classes, and so do the professors. My professor for my LIS 410 course on Library Services for Diverse Users did a live Zoom class with us last week, and we may have a couple more this semester. The “live” class sessions make it feel a little more like it is in-person.    As of early September, I have moved to a new apartment and started a new job. With public schools, there are some pros and cons right now for new teachers. The big downside is I could not find a placement for student teaching this fall. I came to this decision with lots of support…

Being Positive

Peggy Hogan-Rao

It is the last two weeks of the semester, and I must admit I’m getting excited for it to be over. One thing I’ve learned for sure this semester is that student teaching is a lot of work. If I am struggling doing two lessons in one week, I’ll certainly be up for a challenge when I have 20+ classes in one week for grades K-5. Because I’m graduating in the fall, I have had to figure out how to record my lessons and teach virtually. But I have had tremendous help from my supervising librarian and practicum supervisor in decoding virtual teaching! Trying to think on the positive side of these difficult times, my LIS 460 technology course has taught me a lot about digital tools to use for teaching, which comes in handy when I need to record videos. Technology is so important in times when schools are closed. When recording videos of an activity such as how to use a database, I will be using a screencast program such as Screen-Cast-O-Matic or…

Everything Changed

Peggy Hogan-Rao

I almost cried on Monday the 9th when I found out that the St. Patrick’s Day Parade was cancelled. My week did not get better from there. Of course, I watch the news and saw that a Corona virus was proving to be deadly in cruise ships, China, and Italy. I had student teaching last week. Tuesday was a normal day in the library, checking out books and doing read alouds with the K-2 grades. Wednesday was also pretty normal. There were no updates from the school and I went about my day as usual. Thursday came along and everything changed. I wore latex gloves when handling books, which definitely felt weird. I spent my day disinfecting books, laptops, tables, and everything in the library. Kids could not sit on the cushions for the reading nook. For a few minutes in the morning, the librarian was afraid the principal would tell her it was too dangerous to check out books. At the end of the school day on Thursday, one of the other teachers told…

School Library Teacher Life

Peggy Hogan-Rao

So far, my student teaching experience is showing me that in order to work in a school, you really need to love what you do. The passion and dedication to this profession that I see in each of the teachers is incredible. I’ve also found that each day I learn something new from the kids. I tried teaching a lesson on kindness and a kindergarten student reminded me that it is good to have confidence in yourself. When I have trouble balancing doing chores in my house, and a fifth grader reminds me how important it is for everyone to help clean, that really resonates. Another example of these amazing children is that a group of fifth grade students have a book club, which participates in fundraising. Before they start reading a new book, they do a service project to raise money for children living in a homeless shelter, who don’t have books. Most recently, these kids were able to purchase 60 books to be delivered! How amazing is that? In case your wondering, the…

Week 2

Peggy Hogan-Rao

Last week, I started student teaching at an elementary school in Waltham. I have never worked an 8-5 job before, so the first week was quite a shock. Getting used to the routine of being at school at a certain time and working with different grade levels is a lot to adjust to in the first week. In the first couple weeks, I mostly shadowed the librarian to get to know the students and other teachers in the school. By watching the librarian, I learn about what books the kids like to check out and how to engage the students in a read aloud. The hard part about committing so much time to practicum (student teaching) is balancing the one other class. SLT students at Simmons only take one other class with practicum, and it is usually an elective. This semester, my one other class is the required LIS 460: Technology and the School Library Teacher. I was so tired on Friday night after my first week that I didn’t get to any studying that…