today and I keep up with this trend by doing
research about it.
How Libraries are Using Facebook
- The most efficient and beneficial reason to use Facebook in a high school setting that I saw was as a research paper resource. Students prefer to go on a Facebook page and follow links there, instead of going to the actual library website.
- Provides links to library and the resources offered (i.e. eBooks, iPads, holiday resources for the classroom, sharing of lessons from grade levels or classrooms, projects, databases…etc.).
- Sharing links to blogs (i.e. visual literacy, reading, School Library Journal…etc.).
- Posting events and news about the library (fairs, story times, open house, community events, festivals, book giveaways, Banned Books Week, conventions (i.e. Teen Book Convention), library clubs designed by the students themselves, Facebook contests with rewards such as iTunes cards).
- Advertising author visits, free events for students, and free apps.
- Providing information about reading groups (i.e. history, virtual, book clubs (i.e. Manga Club)).
- How-to guides for troubleshooting on your computer.
- Provides Question Forums, especially in high school settings.
- Sharing monthly or weekly theme celebrations (Hispanic Heritage month, Banned Books Week, Black History Month, International School Library Month, Poem in Your Pocket Day, National Poetry Month).
Ways Facebook Promotes Libraries
- announcements of events
- reading contests
- newsletter posts
What do Libraries Post on Facebook?
- news about the library
- author visits
- compliments - thank yous for participation
- news in technology (YouTube videos, social media)
- days of celebrations geared towards library - author days, dot day, #bookaday
- Newbery, Caldecott, and Bluebonnet nominees and winners
- about books - recommendations of books and days (i.e. Dr. Seuss Day)
Are there many comments?
- depends on the post (between 1-6)
Advantages of Using Facebook to Promote the Library
I believe that Facebook Pages do make a connection with students, faculty, staff, parents and volunteers in the use of library resources. For elementary schools it is more about disseminating information. For high schools it is more interactive and some websites even allow for texting questions to the library staff. This “Texting the Librarian” feature is a plus in this day and age. You want students to use the library services linked from the Facebook Page. Also, getting “Likes” on Facebook means that the library is getting “seen” out in the virtual world. This is a definite advantage because our 21st Century Learners live and breathe new and popular technology trends and in this manner they disseminate this information to their friends.
Disadvantages of Using Facebook to Promote the Library
As an outside observer, the way Facebook Pages look is not very organized. Maybe it’s because I don’t have an account and I don’t know the way the posts are posted. Some had a carrot to connect to another post that I found confusing. The posts did have a date which was good, but the actual posts are interconnected in a way that is not very clear. Some Facebook Pages are not interactive, which is a definite negative if users want to interact with and ultimately use and come back to the Facebook Page. The biggest disadvantage is that Facebook is blocked by many districts or schools. This Web 2.0 tool has definitely been, at times, abused and used to abuse its users by other users, so I can understand why it is blocked. However, due to this inability to connect to Facebook, users don’t get to use Facebook as a potentially useful Web 2.0 tool in the library or classroom.
I am aware that our students and children are opening Facebook accounts as early as 5th grade, if not monitored by parents. (I found out this delightful little tidbit from a co-worker who teaches 5th grade and had a student that created an alternate persona on both Facebook and Twitter to attract the “ladies.”) Yes, Facebook is here to stay, unless something bigger and better comes along (maybe Twitter will take over?). I found the Facebook Pages that I looked at to have advantages and disadvantages, but as a purely educational tool I think it works well (granted it provides interaction with the user).
Aside: Due to the fact that I don't have a Facebook account, I was unable to embed or share some posts from the Facebook Pages I looked at. For this I apologize, as this particular post doesn't look very techie. There is probably another way around that, but I am a newbie at blogging and could not find a way. The following are the resources I used to compile my post. :)
Facebook. (2014). Bell Elementary School Library Media Center. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from https://www.facebook.com/pages/Bell-Elementary-School-Library/111524774901
Facebook. (2014). Christa McAuliffe Elementary School Library Media Center. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from
Facebook. (2014). New Canaan High School Library. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from https://www.facebook.com/nchslibrary
Facebook. (2014). New Providence Elementary School Learning Commons. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from
Facebook. (2014). New Trier High School Library. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from https://www.facebook.com/NewTrierLibrary
Facebook. (2014). Valley Oaks Elementary Library. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from https://www.facebook.com/pages/Valley-Oaks-Elementary-Library/165851890134896
Facebook. (2014). West Brook High School Library. Retrieved on January 25, 2014 from https://www.facebook.com/pages/West-Brook-High-School-Library/150517588294492