avatar for Holly Howes

Holly Howes

Indian River School
Library Media Specialist
Canaan, NH
This fall has been a challenge for everyone. My duties changed from primarily library media specialist/tech support to remote academy teacher for 7th grade. Since I have three certifications (K-8 Teaching, Library Media Specialist, Digital Learning Specialist), it seemed logical, and I thought I should do my part. However, teaching 25 students in three subjects/curricula I haven't taught before was incredibly difficult and exhausting, but it was a great group of students. It just took everything I had within me to manage well. Thankfully I have lots of digital tools at my disposal. When our district tech integrator/primary tech support person left the district in October, there was more of a need for my services for tech support and getting the library open. I'm managing the Chromebooks for in-school and for remote students, helping with passwords, and sharing online teaching tips. I've also arranged the library with arrows and pathways like the grocery stores, so that students can come in wearing masks, using hand sanitizer, and socially distancing while they search and checkout books. They come in small groups, one cohort at a time, just during study hall. It takes two weeks to get all of the students from the 18 classrooms into the library, but it's working so far. I sanitize the air and tables between groups, and we've all managed to stay healthy. Students who don't wish to come to the library can put a hold on a book, which I check out and deliver to the classroom. So that's what I'm doing these days, and I would welcome an opportunity to speak with others who are facing similar challenges.