Non-Fiction Books – Are They Still Relevant in a High School Library?

Bev Novak recently posted this video Joe’s Non-Netbook illustrating students’ views on using books for research. Simple, clever, funny and enlightening.

Here’s how I see it.

Our youngest students, Year Levels 7 & 8, irregularly use our non-fiction collection. Older students occasionally utilise the books when their assignment stipulates a number of print-based resources. Why is it necessary to set this criteria? In New Zealand we are fortunate to have the EPIC Databases provided free to all schools by the Ministry of Education – 25 databases containing thousands of international and New Zealand newspapers, magazines and journals, biographies, reference material, images, audio and video on a wide range of topics. These databases quell any argument on quality of online information.

Digital resources allow students to expand images, define words, drag and drop, cut and paste, highlight and comment, to explore links to develop wider understanding, to watch videos or listen to sources that support the learning. Not surprising our students prefer digital resources to the inflexibility of print books.

It comes down to engagement doesn’t it – the learning happens from the engagement. In the 21st Century, the majority of our learners are choosing digital resources over print-based resources. As school librarians we need to reflect on the value and relevance of our non-fiction collections in response to our students’ learning needs.

Source: Bev Novak, BevsBookBlog

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  1. #1 by NovaNews on June 13, 2012 - 9:48 AM

    Thanks for including reference to my post here. 🙂

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