Friday, February 29, 2008

Virtual School Libraries – An Introduction

What is a virtual school library?

A virtual school library is an online learning center which provides its users with access and guidance to information and resources. Virtual school library web sites extend the physical walls of the library. They make the library accessible any time of day or night, from anywhere there is Internet access. It helps reinforce that learning does not just take place during “school hours” but at anytime!

As described by Joyce Valenza:

“your library Web page is your second front door. It meets your students where they live, and play, and work, with 24/7, just-in-time, just-for-me support and intervention. It creates online signage for students and staff. It projects the image of the librarian as a 21st century teacher and information professional. The effective library Web page pulls together, in one unified interface, all of a library's resources--print and electronic.

The library website represents the library program. It offers guidance and instruction while it fosters independent learning. It models careful selection. It offers valuable public service and can redefine ‘community.’ The site supports reading, learning, and the building of knowledge.” ( A WebQuest About School Library Websites ).

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