With the development of new technology and the opportunity this brings to the classroom, how does the Bloomfield library continue adapt to these changes? Our new ‘multifunctional learning hub’ combines technology with a vast, ever-increasing selection of texts and quiet areas for study and relaxation. The new learning facility promotes collaboration and discussion in a tranquil environment.

Martha McKinney talked to Mrs Furphy, our school librarian, who demonstrated and explained the connection between the vital resources and pupils.

The new learning resource centre provides an opportunity for pupils to further develop the reading culture in school. Mrs Furphy explained this is a crucial element to pupils’ learning. Reading, whether it be for study or pleasure, is instrumental to the progress of learning new vocabulary and reducing stress – ‘the more you can read the better for your overall learning’. Our school librarian is planning to expand the young adult selection of books and is always interested in hearing suggestions. The new library was created solely for the benefit of pupils and so student input is always important.

Not only does the library facilitate more reading, but it also creates a social hub. There are now sofas where you can sit, relax and have quiet chats with friends.

A library team of sixth formers has been established, helping out with the running of the facilities. Mrs Furphy is keen to widen to this team into the junior years so the experience and knowledge is shared.

The library team is also going to take part in reading partnerships. This is a session between a member of the team and a pupil seeking guidance and help with their schoolwork, especially with reading. This initiative will give senior pupils a chance to develop teaching skills and establish new friendships with junior pupils.

Throughout the development of the expanded library, Mrs Furphy has been interested in collaborating with the pupils to create a space that suits the requirements of every year group in Bloomfield – a group of year 13 pupils created the colour scheme for the walls of the new library!

Pupils enjoying the new space

There is an array of exciting new clubs and events happening in the new resource centre. For instance, the Accelerated Reader programme is for junior school students. It engages them with quizzes and activities that aid their understanding of the literature they are reading. The programme sets personalised goals for each individual to reach, motivating pupils to read more often. The Accelerated Reader programme stimulates friendly and fun competition with prizes for the form class that win the most points.

Mrs Furphy looks forward to re-starting clubs and societies again. Due to much demand, a Manga Club will begin in the learning centre as well as a book/film club. The first-year pupils can look forward to the annual Roald Dahl day – a chance for them to be immersed in the creative imagination of the great children’s writer.

Mrs Furphy also hopes to launch a murder mystery event inspired by the popular Robin Stevens novels. There are also some author visits planned for the future.

The new learning hub is truly an oasis of calm and creativity, with the bright colours splashed on the walls and vibrant sofas and chairs. The library is open to everyone at break and lunch time from Monday to Friday. There is a buzzing atmosphere of productivity. The new library is a great asset to school life in Bloomfield and Mrs Furphy would encourage all pupils to come and make the most of the fantastic resources available.

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