A drama teacher’s information literacy

Empty chairs

What have you been reading this summer?  I kicked off my season with Drama High by Michael Sokolove.   It tells the real life story of Lou Volpe, a high school drama teacher in Levittown, PA.  During his long career Volpe guided his students in ambitious productions and workshopped Broadway shows for high school use.

As he started out, Volpe took various drama courses to address gaps in his own training.  He noted, “I knew what I wanted to do on the stage, but I really didn’t know how to get there” (Sokolove, 2013, p. 51).  The Research as Inquiry frame involves finding the scope of a problem and gaps in information (Association of College & Research Libraries, 2016).  Even the earlier ACRL Standards (2000) mentioned defining an information need (p. 8).  Volpe did exactly that.

Professional development is part of an educator’s–and a librarian’s–life.  Still, we should not take it for granted.  In Volpe’s case it bore much fruit with his students.

P.S. Speaking of theatre, congratulations to USM alumnus Tony Shalhoub on winning a Tony Award for best leading actor in a musical.


Association of College & Research Libraries. (2000). Information literacy competency standards for higher education. Chicago, IL: Author.

Association of College & Research Libraries. (2016). Framework for information literacy for higher education. Retrieved from ACRL website: http://www.ala.org/acrl/standards/ilframework

Sokolove, M. Y. (2013). Drama high: The incredible true story of a brilliant teacher, a struggling town, and the magic of theater. New York, NY: Riverhead Books.


Image Credit: Daniil Kuželev (CC) license), from Unsplash

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