Bob Hicks Nov. 17, 2011 – Bob was responding to the idea of banning or blocking Google which has been a topic of conversation lately. I suppose the idea would be that it would protect students from finding information on the Internet that is inappropriate or keeping students from taking the easy way out of true research, however banning or blocking Google would make it very difficult for students to learn how to find and evaluate information. I do think that students often times use Google as a shortcut or they just use the first thing that pops up which may not be quality information. This is why it’s important for educators to teach them how to navigate these resources like Google. Pretending Google doesn’t exist won’t solve our problems.
Robert Joyce Nov. 10, 2011 – Well, this was a very interesting post about “recipe day”. LM NET is a professional listserv for librarians and educators to share and collaborate. However, one day a year, the members take a day to share recipes. This has become, over the years, a debated event where some in the group feel it is a nuisance and irrelevant while others enjoy the tradition. So what do you think? Should a listserv like this be strictly professional or is there some benefit to relaxing every once in a while and communicating about something a little more fun?
Kris Waymire Nov. 10, 2011 – Kris posted a request for information on a swipe in/swipe out program for students visiting the library. He currently has a sign in, check pass, sign out, write pass back to class kind of policy which is very time consuming. This got me to thinking about the system in my building. The librarians do have a hard time sometimes keeping up with the continuous flow of student traffic in and out of the library. Mainly because some come with passes and some do not, some sign in and some do not. During the peak times of the day, like lunch time, it can get pretty busy. I wonder if scanning their ID might solve some of these problems. I know it has been discussed in the past, but never realized. What do others do? How do you manage traffic in and out of the library?
Doug Johnson on October 31, 2011 “The Forgetter’s Table” – A horrifying tale
On the Blue Skunk Blog, Johnson reflects on a story about a librarian who described her “forgetter’s table”. Each week when students come to the library if they have forgotten their book, they have to sit at the forgetter’s table while everyone else gets a new book. The point is obviously to control the number of books that are overdue and encourage students to return their library books so that they can get a new book to check out. But what happens to that students who simply cannot remember to bring their book back on time or who doesn’t have the support at home to help make it a priority. Is that librarian growing the love for reading in that child or do they then see the library as a place without flexibility?
The Unquiet Librarian – November 18, 2011 – “Why I Am Not Signing the ‘Save Libraries’ Petition
In this post, Buffy Hamilton explains why she is not signing the petition that is being promoted on numerous Web sites and listservs. The petition would require that a school have a certified librarian on staff and a library that houses 18 books per child or else the school would risk losing their funding. Hamiltonexplains that she doesn’t want to criticize the supporters of the petition but she thinks that the petition is too simplified. Buffy insists that the library is more than storage for books but it is a learning center. She also hoped that the petition would focus more on resources for learning rather than simply books. Have any of you decided to sign or not to sign the petition?
AASL11 – Hashtag Heaven – Sunday October 30, 2011 By Jeff DiScala
Jeff posts a thank you to those that posted take away tweets from a recent AASL virtual conference. I thought this post was interesting because it shows the way things have changed in sharing ideas. Twitter has really opened up the possibilities for an efficient way to share information and connect with people. Last night as I was working with my twitter I commented to my husband that I have now tweeted 5 times. (I’m still new to it) He said he is around 2,000 tweets. I was surprised until he told me he has had a twitter account for 4 years. It feels like twitter is newer than that because it has really taken over lately. I am starting to think of ways that I can use it in my classroom to encourage student participation in government so it is great to see others using it for learning and professional growth as well.
Curriculum 21 Podcast. Integrating literacy into Social Studies.
Host Mike Fisher interviews teacher Bruce Leader about how he uses common core standards and technology to integrate literacy into his Social Studies classes. Bruce uses primary source documents, online reading sources and has students compare them to a variety of secondary sources and discuss the interpretation of information. His classes also use iMovie to include primary/secondary sources into their study of topics like Absolute Monarchs or the French Revolution to enhance the learning process. These opportunities allow students to be able to understand cause and effect relationships and different interpretations of historical events. They work to analyze information and then compare it to other similar events. Castle Learning is a tool that teachers can use to create document based questions and have students submit answers. Teachers can grade them on-line and provide feedback. Mike asked, can we replace a big research paper with other activities and still meet the standards? The answer is yes! Teachers can create writing assignments, evaluation of documents and online projects to meet these standards. Also, the question was raised, how can we teach our students cultural awareness? Using different tools and technology, we can gain an understanding of people’s perspectives from around the world. Hear the whole podcast at: http://www.curriculum21.com/2011/09/curriculum21-podcast-episode-15/ Check out the Castle Learning Web site https://castlelearning.com/review/login/login.aspx
Empowering Learners – Chapter 4
Empowering learning through leadership looks at the role of the SLMS and the role of libraries in teaching and learning in a global society. Librarians are in a period of transition with making the switch to new technology and 21st century skills and the idea of creating a learning commons. Librarians must lead the charge when it comes to new technology, new teaching and learning strategies, collaborative projects and access to the best resources. In order to do this the SLMS must build strong relationships with teachers and administrators and get involved in leadership roles throughout the building. They have to share strategies and become a resource to others in their building. Good leaders are “passionate about their work and look for new ideas in all their experience, both personal and professional” (48). These librarians can lead their programs to a successful future.
Woolls – Chapter 15 – “Leadership and Professional Associations”
Woolls asserts that school librarians need to take on a leadership role in both their own buildings but also in professional organizations for librarians as well as teachers. As members of teacher organizations, librarians can work to build relationships and change inaccurate perceptions about the role of the SLMS. Joining a library media association can obviously help professionals share ideas and build a community of resources that can lead to increased student learning. There are a variety of organizations that professionals can choose from related to library, technology and communication. Woolls writes about the importance of “lobbying” or advocating for library programs and contacting our elected officials to update them on what is happening in school libraries before there is a problem or a need for intervention.