TMC7 Davies

Designing a New Learning Commons

by Pippa Davies

A teacher-librarian describes the key elements and vision for developing a physical learning commons in a school that to date has been a virtual campus in British Columbia.  The school serves K-12 students in BC & worldwide, many with diverse learning needs. The author shares the planning that is underway to create a hybrid SLLC. 

Pippa Davies: My 37-year experience encompasses working as a director, administrator, library specialist and teacher librarian, in many fields; medical, legal, public, reference and education. My goal is to constantly challenge myself to learn new technology, and educational innovations for my school and students, to encourage learning which is vibrant and relevant to their 21st-century needs. For the last 18 years, I have loved working as the Director of Heritage Christian Online School learning commons.  As a change agent in the learning commons environment, I enjoy collaboration, technology integration, literacy projects and dynamic inquiry-based learning, whilst creating a voice for all of our students and staff. I am currently living in Nanaimo and happily married to John with 3 adult children and two grandchildren.  I love reading to my grandkids and seeing them become active learners!

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  1. Hello Pippa, I am very excited to meet you at the conference. I love the way you have developed your online learning hub. It sounds like your school is at similar stage as ours was a few years ago with trying to juggle competing student differentiation needs into one learning hub.

    Our new embedded model has many advantages with allowing a huge Makerspace and shifting the library books directly into the path of students' regular paths throughout the hallways. However, we did to sacrifice the spaces for quiet study/reading. I also had to make adjustments based on budget and direction from the school's project manager. From your list of important aspects to consider, I second the importance of self-checkout stations (we went with Chromebooks instead of much more expensive products), mobile units whenever possible (when our shelving was a bit short, I repurposed some book trucks) and flexible display areas.

    As our table talks will be happening simultaneously, we will need to find some other time to connect!

    1. Thank you Amanda! I would love to connect with you and chat about the process you took to meet your new hub! Thank you also for your confirmation of Chromebooks for self checkout! :)

  2. You two should combind your table talks. I had not seen the Randy Fielding article, but his firmws one of the first to create these kinds of spaces. He never says the word librarian, but I hope to get an interview with him and make that change. Physical space does make a difference and so glad you aredesigning. I want to come see the result when you get finished. super giant TL!

  3. Hello David! I agree with you! You should convince him haha! Thank you for your encouragement. We are excited about the future changes!


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