Books line the aisles, serene silence allows kids to study intently, and opportunities for growth are around every corner. The Edina High School library is a place that can foster success for students, but only if students are adequately using its resources. However, despite their quality and prevalence, the resources in the library seem to be underutilized.
Though the library houses thousands of books, the diversity of selection seems to be forgotten. “I don’t think everyone knows that we have E-Books. We buy them, and you can access them on all of your devices. Those are great resources that many students could benefit from,” Media Specialist Sara Swenson said.
E-books offer a different kind of reading experience that can be much more accessible to students who may not want to carry around paper books. It also means that over holiday breaks, long weekends, or times when students may not have access to the resources in the school, they can still experience everything the library has to offer.
What is also noticeable in the library is the diversity of texts that hold something for everyone. Whether it’s science fiction, social justice books, or historical fiction, the library features a unique selection that guarantees everyone can find a perspective they identify with or a text that enthralls them. What is unfortunate is the realization that the large variety of books may not be getting the recognition that they deserve. “I don’t really see anyone actually using the books, maybe I’m not looking in the right places but I never see people check out books,” senior Kammie Jones said.
Despite being known for its books, the library also offers different tools to help students thrive in school, such as SMath tutors and Writing Coaches. “I think the tutors in the SMath center, the Writing Center coaches, and the Link Crew leaders are waiting and ready to help students and they would like to see more people to help,” Swenson said.
It is no secret that the curriculum at EHS is stressful and can be vigorous, but there are students more than willing to help. Especially given the cost of tutoring outside of school, the coaches available offer a viable alternative that is accessible and free. Having fellow students that have survived the same classes at EHS can be one of the most useful resources to students.
Another useful resource is one of the library’s newest developments – databases for research and for test prep. “One fun collaboration between the library and the College and Career center is connecting students to Learning Express Library, which is an online test prep database, so it’s fun to see students utilizing that and different ways to get students connected to those resources,” Swenson said. Testing prep can aid students in effective preparation and studying, important factors for students taking standardized tests like the ACT and SAT, but also for students taking AP curriculum.
The library can become a tool for students to be successful. Ultimately, the opportunities to improve and grow are waiting for students, but it is up to the students to use them to their advantage.