In India, very few schools have great libraries. Many schools ignore this absolutely important place of learning. School libraries profoundly facilitate curiosity, critical thinking and creativity. It enormously helps students in their achievements as it is a great repository of variety of reading, access to information and a glimpse into the minds of some of the greatest personalities. In USA, every little county has one or more libraries with an exhaustive collection of great books.
One can consider the following points to set up a good library:
- The space should be divided into sections example adult section, children’s’ section.
- These sections should be then subdivided as per the books example
- Language/Regional language
- Non fiction
- Folk Tales
- Social Science
- Vocational training
- Personality development
- Performing Arts
- These sections should be further sub divided as per
- New Arrivals
- Best sellers
- Year of publication
- Academic books can be subject wise and then further categorised as per authors.
- Computer Area for research.
- Reading Corner
- A space for literary discussion where in you can have book reviews, invite authors to give a talk, creative writing etc.
- A small area where student/ public can publish their own short stories, tales, riddles, jokes, book reviews. This is a sure way of encouraging budding artists.
- The library can have soft boards displaying work of art, his/her expressions and the rules to be followed in the library.
- A TV Screen with a projector for power point presentations, for showcasing good movies like classical movies which people, otherwise may not want to see.
- A small mother toddler corner in a far away section where books can be read without disturbing the others.
A model library should have books of all genres.
To share my own personal experience, I really am thankful to the Libraries in Eagan (Minnesota) and West Orange (New Jersey) for having increased my knowledge many folds. You may find it astonishing but I developed an interest in nature by visiting these libraries and reading books on nature. I read books on birds and today I am an avid bird watcher and can proudly say I recognize most bird species and can also recognize some of them by their calls.
I have tried to give exhaustive tips which I have actually witnessed and sometimes been a volunteer party in shaping a good library. In case I have missed some points you are most welcome to share your inputs. I am looking forward for your feedback.