Reflection

LM_NET

Colet Bartow AASL Issues Position Statement on Labeling Books with Reading Levels 9/9/11

This posting describes the position that the AASL has taken regarding organizing libraries by reading level.  In many elementary schools librarians are encouraged to coordinate reading levels in their libraries so that students can find the books that are appropriate for their skill level.  Librarians argue that this type of organization can inhibit students to freely search the library for books that interest them.  Students may feel obligated to check out certain types of books or books that are required by their teachers instead of those books that they truly want to read.  This could unintentionally change the way a student feels about books or the library.

Nancy Schley IPad2 as Document Camera 9/9/11

Nancyposts about her school’s use of the iPad2.  She suggests using the technology as an advanced document camera in the classroom.  It was also suggested that you could use it to shoot a live picture of the document or a still photo.  I thought this was very timely as we just had an in-service today regarding our library’s new iPads.  We saw a number of applications that could be used in the classroom.  There were apps for chemistry, anatomy, social studies, poetry and much more.  The iPad does have the potential to be a great classroom tool for students of all grade levels.

Kris Politis Washington Post Answer Sheet How to teach Wikipedia by the Daring Librarian 9/7/11

This post is a reflection of an article on the Daring Librarian’s blog.  The article encourages teachers and librarians not to ban their students from using Wikipedia, but rather to teach them how to use it effectively.  Most educators agree that Wikipedia is not a source that students should cite in scholarly research but it is an acceptable resource to use for background information.  In addition, the author of the article suggests teaching students to use Wikipedia for, technology terms, cultural literacy and for the resources at the end to gather more information.  I agree with this position.  I believe Wikipedia has some benefits to students.  For fast, basic background information you cannot get it as efficiently in many other places.  However, for teaching students how to evaluate quality information for research, there are many other resources that meet those needs.

Blog Postings

Preparation for Living in a Public World by Stephen Abram as posted on the AASL website.  September 10, 2011

As we look ahead toward Banned Book Week, the AASL would also like to recognize banned Web sites.  Stephen Abram echoes the thoughts of Connie Coyle from August 22, 2011.  The suggestion is that instead of simply banning student access to Web sites, we teach students how to use these sites effectively.  In addition, students need to know how to disseminate valuable information from the other sort.  He highlights some rules associated with the CIPA that some people may not be aware of.  For example, You Tube is not banned by the CIPA nor do Web sites have to be blocked for teachers.  Stephen gives several examples of reasons that some sites are banned including sites using the word “affairs” or “magna cum laude”.  Abram argues that schools are responsible for teaching students to become good citizens and that information literacy is a key component of that education.  http://www.aasl.ala.org/aaslblog/?p=1777

Mass Customization in Education by Doug Johnson on September 7, 2011.

In this article, Doug Johnson reflects on the criticisms of public education that institutions are providing mass education and creating robots rather than creative, unique individuals.  The argument is that public schools do not have the budget to create a customized learning plan for each student.  He asserts that there are a great many careers out there that require a person become trained and acquire the necessary skills to carry out their duties.  Johnson feels as though public schools to a pretty effective job of creating a balance between knowledge and skill and creativity.  This post was very interesting because we have heard for decades that our students need more rigor, skills and knowledge.  Then, when schools try to create programs that are based on skill and common standards, they are criticized for not providing enough room for creativity.  He also argues that although companies say they want individuality, they really are scared of it and would just prefer that everyone would conform.  http://doug-johnson.squarespace.com/blue-skunk-blog/2011/9/7/mass-customization-in-education.html

From the Unquiet Librarian’s blog on September 10, 2011.  In the spirit of Benjamin Franklin: 13 Virtues of the next-gen librarian.  Authors Andy Burkhardt, Catherine R. Johnson and, Carissa Tomlinson

This is a re-post of an article that reflects on the role of librarian and its evolution.  The author suggests that any librarian can be a next-gen librarian regardless of age or experience.  Any librarian who is willing to embrace the changing role of libraries and librarians and embrace the 13 listed virtues can fit the description.  I will just expand on a few of the 13 listed virtues here.  Flexibility is a virtue that all school librarians can understand.  With students comes unpredictability and librarians need to be prepared to be flexible with schedules, hours, access and more.  Another is to be service oriented.  Instead of encouraging teachers and students to find you if they need help, extend your service to them often and make their library experience meaningful.  Creativity is another virtue that next-gen librarians must have.  Finding creative solutions to problems, creative ways to market your programs and draw kids into the library is a daily activity.  To read more about the 13 virtues follow this link: http://crln.acrl.org/content/72/8/450.short?rss=1

Podcast

From Inside the New York Times book review.  This podcast included an interview of author Thomas L. Friedman who writes That Used to be Us.  He believes that “America is the tent pole that holds up the world”.  The book reflects on the decline ofAmerica and its impact on the rest of the world.  He talks about the end of the Cold War and the effects of 9/11.  Tom suggests that in order forAmerica to be great again they need to reinvest in the following five pillars: education, immigration, good infrastructure, guidelines to regulate business, and government funded research.   

Also in this podcast, on this the 10th anniversary of 9/11, many 9/11 books have been released.  A memoir of an FBI agent who worked on counterterrorism was released.  What We Saw is an account of 9/11 that has been updated and The Looming Tower has been re-issued. 

Finally the podcast reviewed the work of a best-selling author named Christopher Hitchens.  Hitchens who is dying of cancer writes ofAmericaand secularism, and activist government.

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Weekly Reflection

Podcast Reflection

This week I reviewed the NPR Books podcast from August 18, 2011.  In this episode NPR highlights Young Adult Literature that adults have been drawn to for their literary qualities.  Titles include Flip by Martin Bedford, Delirium by Lauran Oliver, Trapped by Michael Northrup and Karma by Cathy Ostlere.  The podcast also included an interview with author Terry Pratchett.  The interview focused on his advocacy for the legalization of assisted suicide as he suffers from the onset of Alzheimer’s Disease.  The podcast closes with a review of two novels.  The first, The Family Fang by Kevin Wilson is the story of a family of four.  The parents are involved in Performance Art and have used their children for years as part of their work.  The story takes place as the grown children have returned to their parent’s house after escaping their drama filled childhood.  The eccentric behavior continues when the family comes back together.  Thick as Thieves by Peter Spiegelman is a crime fiction novel by an author that once worked on Wall Street.  The author cited his experience in the financial world as helpful in his research while he was preparing to write.  The NPR Books podcast is a great way to listen to interviews with authors and hear reviews of new titles.

“New Teen Novels, Terry Pratchett, Vampires, Werewolves and more.” Aug. 18, 2011. Podcast. “NPR: Books Podcast.” accessed Aug. 24, 2011.

Blog Reflections

From Blue Skunk Blog April 2010, Doug Johnson posted a list of “Dangerous Statements for Librarians to Make”.  On this list of more than a dozen statements, Johnson warns librarians against making statements that both endanger their jobs and damage their relationships with teachers and students.  I had a hard time believing that anyone would say things like: “computers and the Internet are the bane of reading and rational thought. I refuse to learn about them”, or “my expertise in children’s/young adult literature makes me indispensable to my school”.  However, there may be librarians out there that have a difficult time embracing new technology or are having difficulty with the changing role of the library in schools.  Sadly, these librarians are missing the opportunity to be a valuable resource to the students and teachers in their school.  http://doug-johnson.squarespace.com/blue-skunk-blog/2010/4/21/dangerous-statements-for-librarians-to-make.html

From the AASL on August 22, 2011, Connie Coyle (educator and librarian) writes about the censorship of the internet in schools for Banned Web sites Awareness Day.  Connie makes some very good arguments supporting the idea of education children rather than simply restricting their access.  If we give students the right knowledge, they can navigate the material on the Internet.  In many instances, kids are able to maneuver around the filters set up by districts anyway to access the information they are looking for.  Connie suggests that, “instead of banning and filtering, perhaps it would be better to partner with children.”  She asserts that while homeschooling her own children, she teaches them the lessons of digital citizenship.  Since our students are growing up in the age of endless media and information we should teach them to make informed decisions about the materials they find so that they can be prepared to do it on their own.  http://www.aasl.ala.org/aaslblog/?p=1684

From Shelf Consumed June 20011, Leigh Ann Jones gives some tips for increasing the opportunities for collaboration between students in the library.  It is clear that interpersonal communication and the ability to work with a team are a valuable part of being a good employee in many career fields, so as educators we should give students the opportunities to learn these skills.  Some of the suggestions that she makes include: arranging furniture so that small groups can work together and allowing for “productive” noise in the library.  To read the full post, follow this link. http://www.shelfconsumed.com/2011/06/is-your-library-conducive-for.html.

LM Net Reflections

From BettyTX (8/26/2011)  Betty asks, “is the personal library doomed”?   I have found myself thinking about this question a lot lately with so many of us turning to e-readers.  I am one of those people who is resisting the change because I like to feel the book in my hand and hold my place with a book mark.  I like to see the book lying around to remind me that it is waiting for me to have some free time.  I also enjoy looking at other people’s bookshelves when I visit their homes because it says so much about them and it is always great for conversation.  It will be sad to watch book stores close and books disappear from personal libraries.

From Vicki Nelson (8/25/2011)  Insult to Injury.  Vicki posts about budget cuts in her district and that certified librarians are being asked to train clerks to run elementary libraries without certification.  Sadly Vicki is experiencing what much of the country is facing in today’s economic crisis.  Libraries in districts across the country have to cut back and do more with less.  It really shows the dedication and heart of today’s educators to continue providing the same high level of instruction with fewer resources and less time.  Our business is student learning and we cannot lose sight of our goals.

From Pamela Thompson (8/19/2011)  Movie Making for Kids.  This LM_Net post provides a link to a great Web site called Zimmer Twins for making short movies.  This is most appropriate for upper elementary, middle or early high school.  The site looks very easy to navigate and could be a great way for students to learn more about a topic by creating a movie from scratch.  By engaging students in a creative activity, they can make connections to their curriculum that last. 

Reflection Question:  In what way do schools still need brick-and-mortar libraries and librarians to run them?

In response to this question, reader Kelly Bryant says, “I firmly believe that the library is the hub of the school. It is the place where individuals, small and large groups can come and get support, help and instruction. This instruction certainly happens in structured scheduled times, but it also happens when students come in on their own”  (Brichacek).  

Schools most certainly still need brick-and-mortar libraries and trained librarians to run them.  The argument has been made that students can access databases, information and some technology from their computers at home, so why continue funding school libraries?  The reasons are plentiful.  To begin, school libraries are not just a place for students to check out a book or hop onto a computer, they are collaborative learning environments that are an extension of their classrooms.  According to Blanche Wools in The School Library Media Manager, the school library is the “information center of the school” (11).  Students cannot be expected to create these learning experiences on their own.  They need the proper environment along with the guidance from certified professionals.

Not only is the school library responsible for making materials available for students, but it is also a place for instruction, collaboration, studying, learning new technology, and developing critical thinking skills.  An important part of what the school librarian does is to teach students information literacy.  “The mission of the school library media program is to ensure that students and staff are effective users of ideas and information” (AASL 8).  It is essential to help students understand how to evaluate the vast amounts of information that students have access to daily. 

Another reason to protect school libraries is so they can provide access to students who otherwise would not have it.  These students rely on the school library to provide the opportunity to use not only print material, but also the technology that will keep them in step with their classmates.  Without the school library, these students would struggle to keep up.  According to the Standards for the 21st Century Learner, core belief number nine states that “school libraries are essential to the development of learning skills” (13).  Without libraries many students would be without the resources needed to develop these skills.

Librarians all over the nation are updating their library programs to keep up with the changing world.  The Ottawa Citizen highlights librarian Janice O’Neill at St. Mark Catholic High School who is working to change the culture of her library so that students can learn the 21st century skills they need.  She recognizes the need to increase technology and help students navigate information.  She now provides access to technology like e-readers and smart phones with the guidance of a librarian. 

Sadly, many librarians across the country are also desperately trying to defend their programs.  A recent post on Blue Skunk Blog indicates that librarians are constantly worried about job preservation.  Since people are starting to see the resources in the library as available from anywhere, librarians are looking at ways to engage in self promotion, find advocates in students and staff, and ensure an alliance with the principal.  These practices are necessary to highlight the value of library programs.  Without advocates who fight for their school libraries, they may not get the attention and funding they deserve.

Johnson, Doug. “What I Wish I’d Known as a New Librarian – A Meme?” Blue Skunk Blog. 10 Sept. 2010. Web. 10 Sept. 2010. <http://doug-johnson.squarespace.com/blue-skunk-blog/2010/9/10/what-i-wish-id-known-as-a-new-librarian-a-meme.html>.

Brichacek, Andra. “READERS RESPOND: Do Schools Still Need Brick-and-mortar Libraries?” ISTE Community Ning 17 Aug. 2009. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.iste-community.org/group/landl/forum/topics/readers-respond-do-schools>.

Person, Matthew. “High School Libraries Enter the 21st Century.” Ottawa Citizen 15 May 2011. Web. 27 May 2011. <http://www.ottawacitizen.com/news/High+school+libraries+enter+21st+century/4786009/story.html>

American Association of School Librarians. Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Media Programs.Chicago:ALA, 2009. Print

Woolls, Blanche. The School Library Media Manager.Westport: Libraries Unlimited, 2008. Print.

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Cell Phones in Education

Can smart phone technology take the place of a classroom teacher or librarian?  Of course not.  However, there have been some major advancements in the smart phone industry in the past several years that can certainly enhance what teachers and librarians can do for and with students.  The problem is that many school districts across the country are taking the position that smart phones have no place in education.  That could not be further from the truth.  What we as educators need to do is teach our students how to use them responsibily and to increase academic success and productivity.  We need to embrace them as a tool instead of a distraction. 

Let’s face it, students have the technology and are anxious to use it.  They want to stay in contact with friends and try out the latest apps.  We should be capitalizing on this opportunity to draw them back into the classroom learning environment by using these tools that they are so excited about.

Of course there are disadvantages.  How can teachers be sure students are on task?  How can teachers gather and evaluate data from the various applications?  What if a student doesn’t have access to a smart phone?  These are all valid points and issues that educators will truly have to consider before integrating any kind of smart phone technology into their curriculums.

However, consider the possibilities.  Students are excited about using the technology.  We can teach them how to use it in an educational setting which will prepare them for using it in a professional setting.  We can get more students engaged in discussion.  Take for example Dr. Monica Rankin, History professor at UT Dallas.  In her class of 90 students she cannot possibly call on each student during a discussion so instead, students twitter comments and questions during and after class discussion to stay involved and earn participation points.  In the library and the classroom this technology can be used for research, as a study aide, to facilitate discussion, to take group quizzes, to collaborate with other students to create podcasts, to edit photographs to stay organized and to carry multiple books on the go.  The possibilities are endless.

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IDEA Pathfinder

“The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a law ensuring services to children with disabilities throughout the nation.” (idea.ed.gov)  This pathfinder is intended to help educators find technology resources that they can use to help their students find more accessibility and success in the educational setting.  There are both websites and journal articles to help you find the information you are looking for.

General Information (Technology for a variety of disabilities)

Ability Hub is a website that offers a directory of adaptive technologies for those students with disabilities that may have a difficult time with traditional computers.

Axistive is a site that advertises products that can assist students with physical disabilities to use their computers with greater ease and comfort.  There are a variety of products with photographs.

Family Village School is a site that offers a variety of articles and sites regarding assistive technology for students with disabilities.

Great Schools is a tool for parents and teachers by grade level with more information on disabilities, a guide to advocacy, tools for students, and much more.

Kids Health is an online resource that educators can use to help students understand how to stay healthy and to understand disabilities.National Down Syndrome Society is a resource for information related to the inclusion of students with Down Syndrome.  It has a wide variety of tools and links to information.

Kid Source is an online tool that defines what Assistive Technology Devices are and offers suggestions on tools that educators can use in the classroom from help with organization to literacy skills.

Learning Tools offers a vast list of specific technology tools that students can use for assistance in the classroom.  The list includes physical, cognitive, auditory and visual technologies. 

Reading Rockets is a resource that is dedicated to helping teachers and parents find strategies to improve the literacy skills for students with a variety of disabilities.  They also offer a long list of technologies.

South Carolina Assistive Technology Program offers a site with links to technology like reading pens, talking calculators and listening systems for students with a variety of disabilities.

Technology Tools is a site that outlines the requirements of IDEA and offers some suggestions on adaptive technology for students including portable note taking devices, and talking word processors.

University of Washington this article addresses disabilities from physical to auditory and the technologies that are available for educators and parents to utilize to help increase their student’s success.

Garrett, Jennifer Tumlin; Heller, Kathryn Wolff; Fowler, Linda P; Alberto, Paul A; Fredrick, Laura D; et al. “Using Speech Recognition Software to Increase Writing Fluency for Individuals with Physical Disabilities.” Journal of Special Education Technology 26. 1 (2011): 25-41.   This article describes the benefits of using speech recognition software to help students with reading and writing.  The indications are that this technology will help students improve their fluency and accuracy.

Ludlow, Barbara L; Foshay, John D.  “Assistive Technology in the Classroom: Enhancing the School Experiences of Students with Disabilities.” Journal of Special Education Technology 24. 1 (2009): 65-67.  This article reviews a book called Assistive Technology in the Classroom: Enhancing the School Experiences of Students with Disabilities that helps educators understand the technologies available to students with disabilities. It gives a brief chapter by chapter description.

Morrison, Karen. “Implementation of Assistive Computer Technology: A Model for School Systems.” International Journal of Special Education 22.1 (2007): 83-95.   This article helps school systems understand what kinds of technology may be used for students with disabilities and how to try and implement a technology system.

Jeffs, Tara, Michael Behrmann, and Brenda Bannan-Ritland. “Assistive Technology and Literacy Learning: Reflections of Parents and Children.” Journal of Special Education Technology 21.1 (2006): 37-44.   This article reflects on a study of technologies that students have used to increase literacy skills and the results of those technologies.

Visual Disabilities

Assistive Media is a great resource for those students with visual disabilities.  It is an online reader for students with access to free books.

Stauffer, Mary. “Instruction of Keyboarding Skills: A Whole Language Approach to Teaching Functional Literacy Skills to Students Who are Blind and Have Additional Disabilities.” International Journal of Special Education 23.1 (2008): 74-81.  This article suggests the use of keyboarding skills to increase the literacy success of visually impaired students and other students with disabilities.  It includes the use of Braille on the keyboard.

Adaptive Technology for the Visually Impaired is a resource for product information on technologies that exist for the visually impaired. 

Cummings, Edward O. “Assistive and Adaptive Technologies.” Knowledge Quest 39. 3 (Jan/Feb 2011): 70-73.    This article describes a piece of technology called the Classmate Reader.  It is a handheld device that allows students to listen to their textbook and follow along on the screen.  This could be used with children with learning disabilities or visual impairments.

Auditory Disabilities

National Institute on Deafness and Other Communication offers a wide range of information regarding deafness and research, funding, news and events and advances in technology.

Tayfun Tanyeri, et al. “Reflections of Hearing Impaired Students on Daily and Instructional PDA Use.” International Journal of Special Education 24.1 (2009): 8-19.  Article reflects on the importance of using technology in the classroom for special education students.  Specifically, the author is focusing on hearing impaired students and the use of mobile technology.

Reading Disabilities

Esteves, Kelli J, EdD; Whitten, Elizabeth. “Assisted Readingwith Digital Audiobooks for Students with ReadingDisabilities.” Reading Horizons 51. 1 (Apr/May 2011): 21-40   Article reviewed a study done with students who used reading devices during SSR to improve reading fluency.  Results indicated that the devices did increase reading success.

Autism

Ayres, Kevin M; Langone, John. “Video Supports for Teaching Students with Developmental Disabilities and Autism: Twenty-Five Years of Research and Development.” Journal of Special Education Technology 23. 3 (2008): 1-8.   Article gives educators tips on using video to help develop educational plans for students with disabilities. 

Cordwell, Tammy. “Improving Access to Computers for Students with Disabilities: Features Available in the Windows 7 Operating System.” Journal of Special Education Technology 25. 4 (2010): 48-54.  Article described how technology with computers can help students learn.  By substituting a mouse and keyboard for a touch screen, students with autism for example can experience greater success.

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Book Review

After reading Technology and the School Library: A Comprehensive Guide for Media Specialists and Other Educators by Odin L. Jurkowski, I have realized that the responsibilities of a school librarian have changed drastically in the past several decades.  In addition to the wide variety of print materials that are available, now school librarians are also responsible for the organization and administration of computers, computer software, multi media instructional material as well as training students and teachers on information tools, instructional technology and much, much more.  From computer networking and automation systems to individual barcodes on checked out material, the librarian has much to keep track of and maintain in a modern day library.

Information Tools in the library can be anything from desktop computers to network wiring.  It is important that the school librarian be familiar with how these systems work so that they can better serve the population of their school.  The computer case, the hard drive the network and sound cards are all important components of the system which students use to access important information and resources.  School Librarians need to decide what kind of accessories will benefit their students.  Speakers, DVD players, types of mice, USB ports, scanners and printers come in a variety of options.  In addition, librarians have to be aware of the operating systems that are available for their library.  I was surprised that the librarian is responsible for so much of the network set up and operating systems maintenance. As we know, librarians are an essential part of the instructional process and their collaboration with teachers is a must.  Therefore, deciding which programs to include on the computers can make all the difference.  Decisions about office suites, networking, photo editing programs and Web browsers contribute to a strong library program.  In my building teachers rely on the library staff to be an integral part of technology and resource planning and count on them to instruct students on the use of many programs and equipment.

Information Resources focus more on the software that students use to enhance or facilitate classroom curriculum.  There has, over time, been the idea that computers or computer software can somehow replace teacher led instruction, but the truth is that students need personal instruction and educational software is best used as a supplement to an instructor.  There is a variety of software on the market with different goals and results.  Information Resources also includes blogs, wikis, databases, and websites.  Blogs and wikis can be a great way to keep students updated and facilitate discussions between students or colleagues.  The Internet and development of databases have changed the way that students and teachers research.  There is an abundance of information out there and it is the responsibility of the school librarian to evaluate these resources and ensure that students have access to them.  A good library website can be a great tool.  90% of school librarians do keep up with a website for their library (69).  The library website in my building is where I sign up for computer labs, check the library/lab schedule, reserve a video and see the latest book reviews.  The important things to remember are to know your audience, make sure your website is organized and try not to overwhelm your users.  The library website should be a working resource with things like databases, book reviews, book trailers, on-line catalogs, teacher resources and more.

Technology in the classroom has come a long way in the past several decades and school librarians are now responsible for more technology than ever before.  Film strips were advanced technology in their day and gave teachers an opportunity to offer students a new perspective.  Technology used in the classroom often has its origins in the library.  Much of the technology that teachers use is checked out from the library and often times teachers are trained on the technology by librarians.  Some examples include: digital cameras, digital recorders, flip cameras, document readers, e-books and interactive whiteboards.  In addition to these, librarians need to be aware of their patrons with disabilities.  Having resources like large print materials, books in Braille, magnifiers and hearing devices can help make important resources available to more students.  Finally one of the most important pieces of technology used by teachers is the mobile computer lab.  In my building, the mobile computer labs are in constant use.  The mobile computer lab/cart makes computer access for all students convenient.  Teachers can take the computers to the classroom for work on projects.  The logistics of a mobile computer lab can be a struggle for librarians.  Deciding on the cart, the storage, the maintenance and the movement of the cart can be hectic, but this technology is still a good choice for teachers.

Taking care of the administration of the school library can be a very complex task.  There are many things to consider including an automated card catalog and check out system, bar coding and student computer maintenance.  The selection of an automated catalog and checkout system is one that requires consideration of cost, technical support and maintenance.  Automation systems take care of things like circulation, interlibrary loan and security.  Planning technology for a school library takes a great deal of forethought, funding consideration and planning.  You have to be sure that you do not under plan for the future nor over spend for your budget.  You have to tie it to standards, set goals and get input from a variety of people.  In addition to planning, maintaining student computers can be a challenge.  There has to be a procedure in place to check the condition of the computers, to find the best positioning for the computers, to ensure that the software is updated, and to plan for upgrading the technology.  The librarian also has to set the standard for policies about games, e-mail, and access to information on the internet.  Finally this section outlined the need for security in some libraries.  There are different strategies that libraries use to maintain security which could include using electromagnetic strips or radio frequency.  Different buildings have different needs when is comes to security depending on the age group and the past issues with materials.  Something that I think some teachers don’t realize is all of the work that goes into securing the materials in the library and making sure everything is working properly for students and staff.

Most school librarians have a background in teaching so it makes perfect sense that the librarian serve as an instructor in any school building.  Often times librarians are left out of the teaching faculty even though they not only teach students but teachers as well.  One of the most important things that a librarian can do is teach teachers what the library has to offer so they can pass it along to their students.  In order to do this, librarians have to find a way to bring teachers into the library for professional development.  This can be a difficult task because teachers are busy and have very little free time.  Some things to consider are providing training during the school day, identifying objectives and goals, being enthusiastic about the topic and providing some incentives for teachers.  A lunch time session might be appropriate for this type of training because teacher are already at work, they enjoy a free lunch and it can be convenient and a fun change of pace.  This also really adds to the well publicized library.  One thing I had not considered until my Foundations class was the marketing piece of librarianship and how important it is to promote the library programs.  Not only can librarians teach about the library resources but also about the wide variety of Web 2.0 capabilities including blogs, wikis, content sharing sites and social networking.

In conclusion, the school librarian is also a teacher, a technology specialist, a record keeper, and an administrator!  There are so many things to consider in running a well used and maintained library.  The school librarian needs to not only stay on top of the latest publications but also the latest technology.  There are many skills required to coordinate all of the resources in the library and the library staff must work diligently to keep everything running smoothly for the students that it serves.  I would recommend this book to all media specialists, teachers and librarians.  It really helps you to realize all that goes into being an effective school librarian.

Jurkowski, O. (2010). Technology and the school library: A comprehensive guide for media specialists and other educators. 2nd Edition. Lanham,MD: Scarecrow Press.

 

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