This article is intended to describe the rationale and process of creating and effectively using classroom libraries in middle- and high-school English Language Arts classrooms. The authors connect theory to practice, using research to guide decisions about book selection and teacher professional development that takes into account the unique affordances and constraints of using classroom libraries at the secondary level. Additionally, the authors include considerations for the current reality of remote, virtual, and blended learning scenarios.
Jenelle Williams is a Literacy Consultant within the Leadership and School Improvement unit at Oakland Schools. She joined the organization in 2017 following 18 years of experience in public schools at the elementary, middle, and high school levels. She has served as a classroom teacher, IB Middle Years Programme Coordinator, teacher leader, and educational technology coach. An IB Educator since 2013, Jenelle leads professional development workshops for coordinators and building leaders in IB World Schools. She holds an Education Specialist in Leadership degree and a Master’s degree in Reading and Language Arts through Oakland University. Jenelle is passionate about supporting teachers, building leaders and central office administrators in the area of secondary literacy, and she is especially excited to be able to support Michigan’s work around disciplinary literacy through her role as Co-Chair of the statewide Disciplinary Literacy Task Force.
Megan Kortlandt is Literacy Consultant at Oakland Schools Intermediate School District. Megan is especially passionate about supporting teachers to reach all learners through engagement, authenticity, and autonomy. She also believes it is critical to continuously develop administrators’ instructional leadership, and she is currently working on a forthcoming book through ASCD on this topic. When she’s not teaching or facilitating professional learning, she’s writing about it as a contributor to the Moving Writers blog. She can be reached at Megan.Kortlandt@oakland.k12.mi.us.
Williams, Jenelle and Kortlandt, Megan
"Big Kids Need Books Too: Lessons Learned From Building Classroom Libraries at the Secondary Level,"
Michigan Reading Journal: Vol. 53:
2, Article 11.