SPI Library Collection

The library at Sekolah Pilar Indonesia has an extensive collection of resources which have been methodically and consistently collected over the past three years. The collection at this time consists of over 10,000 items, including books and audio-visual materials. 
The collection is organized according to the Dewey Decimal System and the information is stored and can subsequently be retrieved from the BOOKMARK programme. This programme was chosen because of its ease of use by young children. Even the youngest students can learn to access information from the on-line public access catalogue (OPAC).

The library is separated into various sections:
The general or non-fiction part is the largest section and makes up over half of the collection. The non-fiction collection is available for loan by students and teachers for a week or more and is often used to find the answers to inquiry questions or sometimes just read for fun.
The reference collection which consists of materials such as encyclopedias, atlases, dictionaries, thesaurus and almanacs etc may not be borrowed overnight and may only be taken to the classroom for several hours at the most. The reference collection is designed to remain in the library. 
The teachers’ resource collection which includes samples of textbooks, professional guides, and other teaching materials can be borrowed by teachers only. 
Many DVDs and VCDs supplement this collection and teachers use this material to support learning in the classroom.

The fiction section of the library has over 3,000 novels which have been carefully colour-coded
according to their level of difficulty. 
Picture Books which are colour-coded yellow are included in this group. They are classified this way because of their illustrations which are as important to the message of the book as the words. Caldecott Medal winners are included in this group although it is important to realize that not all of the books are suitable for younger children. The larger size of these books however, makes them suitable for sharing, for example, between a parent and a child.
Emergent readers will find these green-coded books especially useful. They provide beginners with the opportunity to tackle a text independently. Most have a substantial number of illustrations.
Early chapter books coded pink are designed to appeal to students whose reading skills are developing well. These students can read for more sustained lengths of time, do not need as many pictures to entertain them and can leave a book and then pick up again where they left off.
Blue coded books have more sophisticated story lines and more advanced use of language. The subject matter is often best suited to junior high students. Grade 9 students are expected to take advantage of this excellent collection to improve their English and to enjoy the best of English language children’s fiction.
As the senior high school develops more young adult novels will be purchased.

Big Books are available to assist teachers with the teaching of English during shared reading.

A vertical file of newspaper clippings and brochures is available when library patrons need up to date information.

Students also have access to the World Wide Web and may use specified search engines for research purposes with the supervision of teachers. Cyber safety rules have been explained and parents also have a responsibility to check on their children’s use of the internet at home. The use of social networking sites should be closely supervised at home and is not allowed at school.

Students should also take advantage of novels on tape and listen to them at home or in the Listening Centre to help improve their English listening skills.

The newest part of our collection is the graphic novels. Children who come from a television and therefore visually dominant society enjoy this type of literature. These books will be housed separately and are available for normal borrowing.

The Home Reading Programme which involves students taking home a leveled reader is also managed from the library. There are over 3,000 readers available at various reading levels and it is each student’s responsibility to change over their reader on a regular basis, preferably daily.

The collection is bilingual, and students are able to borrow books written in their native tongue as well as books in English. It is the school’s policy that students must maintain their mother tongue if they wish to learn to speak English well. Children without a strong foundation in their mother tongue cannot learn a foreign language because they have no background knowledge on which to base their new learning.
Students are tested when they enter the school and twice each year to determine which reading strategies they are using and which they still need to learn. It is our belief that students will learn to read by reading and the amount of reading they do is a more reliable indicator of their probable success than the level of the reading material.
We therefore encourage students to read widely and choose different genre in both Indonesian and English. It is important to choose to read often.

Early in the new academic year we hope to move our current library collection into brand new premises. There will be study carrels, tutorial rooms, listening centres, computers connected to the internet and ample resources for all students’ study needs. We are looking forward to using the new space.