Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Questions....Not Answers...Giving and Receiving Assignments



Welcome back to your profession!

Hope that everyone is rested, relaxed, and recharged as much as one can be this time of year.  

Here is some food for thought as we enter another school year of providing the best services and resources possible in our respective areas.  

Articles to inspire and ponder new beginnings.

These themes in these articles really speak to me this time of year.




I am challenging myself this year to raise more questions and not expect answers to everything in library land.  I will keep investigating issues while giving and receiving assignments from those around me as well as the ones I assign to myself. 

Best wishes for an awesome school year!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Multiple Literacy Series: Transliteracy

Transliteracy and the School Library Program: bringing all the literacy concepts together. 

The term transliteracy refers to the connects between the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools and media from text, signing and orality through handwriting, print, television, streaming video, computer programs and software, mash-ups, radio and film, to digital, mobile , and social networks. 

Transliteracy does not replace other literacy, but rather incorporates, media literacy, digital literacy, mobile literacy, visual literacy, and social literacy (Thomas, et al).

Libraries and transliteracy / @librarianbyday | #readyfortransliteracy

AND...

The site Libraries and Transliteracy discusses transliteracy as a set of 21st century skills defined as " the ability to read, write and interact across a range of platforms, tools, and media, from signing and orality through handwriting, print, TV, radio and film, to digital social networks."



Articles to explore and learn more about transliteracy including the perspective of a school librarian trying to fit into the school setting. School librarians are trained to participate in collaboration and we understand that teaching and learning is a two way street.
School Library Research: Literacy and transliteracy
slideshare: Libraries and transliteracy
Scoop.it: Transliteracy and Libraries
Transliteracy from the perspective of an information literacy advocate
AASL's 2012 Fall Forum Focused on Transliteracy
Transliteracy and Participatory Librarianship


Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Multiple Literacy Series: Media Literacy

What is Media Literacy? A Definition...and More.


The definition most often cited in the US is a succinct sentence hammered out by participants at the 1992 Aspen Media Literacy Leadership Institute:CML's definition focuses media literacy as education for 21st century.
 … the ability to access, analyze, evaluate and create media in a variety of forms.
Definitions, however, evolve over time and a more robust definition is now needed to situate media literacy in the context of its importance for the education of students in a 21st century media culture. CML uses this expanded definition:

• Media Literacy is a 21st century approach to education.
• It provides a framework to access, analyze, evaluate and create messages in a variety of forms - from print to video to the Internet.
• Media literacy builds an understanding of the role of media in society as well as essential skills of inquiry and self-expression necessary for citizens of a democracy.
Taken directly from source: Center for Media Literacy

Articles to familiarize yourself about media literacy

Recommended books

Hobbs, Renee. Digital and Media Literacy: Connecting Culture and Classroom. Thousand Oaks, CA: Corwin, 2011. Print.
Tyner, Kathleen R. Literacy in a Digital World: Teaching and Learning in the Age of Information. Mahwah, NJ: Erlbaum, 1998. Print.


Resources from a Media Literacy and Youth course at the University of Illinois 

Also was thinking about the issue of media justice. The links below explore how activists are trying to advocate for media literacy practices through various social justice movements. 
Critical Media Literacy: http://criticalmedialiteracyconference.blogspot.com/p/what-is-critical-media-literacy.html
Mobile Justice: http://medialiteracyproject.org/campaigns/mobile-justice
Digital Justice for Us: http://medialiteracyproject.org/programs/digital-justice-for-us
Center for Media Literacy-Communicating for Justice: http://www.medialit.org/reading-room/communicating-justice
Kaiser Family Foundation. Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18-Year Olds.http://www.kff.org/entmedia/mh012010pkg.cfm
Pew Internet & American Life Project. "Library Services in the Digital Age." January 22, 2013. http://libraries.pewinternet.org/2013/01/22/library-services/

Media Literacy Education in K-12 Schools and Public Libraries
  • Foss, Elisabeth, Allison Druin, Jason Yip, Whitney Ford, Evan Golub and Hilary Hutchinson. “Adolescent Search Roles.”JASIST (Journal of the American Society for Information Science and Technology) 64.1 (January 2013): 173-189.
  • Watch the TedxBlue Talk: Angela Duckworth, “True GRIT: Can Perseverance be Taught?”http://tedxtalks.ted.com/video/TEDxBlue-Angela-Lee-Duckworth-
  • Paul Mihailidis & Valerie Diggs. “From Information Reserve to Media Literacy Learning Commons: Revisiting the 21st Century Library as the Home for Media Literacy Education.” Public Library Quarterly29.4 (2010): 279-292.
  • Lisa Tripp. “Digital Youth, Libraries, and New Media Literacy.” The Reference Librarian 52:4 (2011): 329-341.
  • Domine, Vanessa. "Think Global, Act Local: Expanding the Agenda for Media Literacy Education in the United States." Library Trends 60.2 (Fall 2011): 440-453.
Civic Engagement: Media Literacy and the Youth Citizen
TEDxUIllinois - Dr. Lisa Nakamura - 5 Types of Online Racism and Why You Should Care

Digital Citizenship and Online Safety

  • CommonSense Media Look through website, particularly at curriculum lessons and resources for K-5 Digital Literacy and Citizenship and 6-8 Cyberbullying: Crossing the Line.
  • danah boyd, Jenny Ryan, and Alex Leavitt. "Pro-Self-Harm and the Visibility of Youth-Generated Problematic Content."I/S: A Journal of Law and Policy for the Information Society 7.1 (2011)http://moritzlaw.osu.edu/students/groups/is/archives/volume-71-2/

Next time on the multiple literacy series: Information Literacy

Friday, August 8, 2014

Teacher Librarians Attend ILA Leadership Institute

Every other year, the Iowa Library Association invites leadership expert and former ALA President Maureen Sullivan to present to current and potential leaders in the Iowa Library world. August 6th-8th, four Teacher Librarians were a part of this institute in Cedar Rapids along with three academic librarians and twenty-two public librarians.

Left to Right: Maureen Sullivan, Elizabeth Schau, Jenna Spiering, 
Chelsea Sims, Kat Rogers (not pictured)

The Leadership Institute covered various models of leadership styles, approaches to risk-taking, embracing creativity, becoming a change agent, effective teamwork, negotiating conflict, coaching and more. 

As an IASL Board member, it was so energizing to meet and collaborate with librarians from so many types and sizes of libraries. I learned a great deal about how other libraries operate and was so impressed by the passionate and talented group of colleagues we have in our state.  

It is often easy for us to assume that our libraries are so much different than those in other institutions, but when we were discussing challenges we face in our libraries, all of our lists were all nearly identical!  Our profession as a whole is dealing with changing library landscapes, a misunderstanding by many of the services we can and do offer, making sure our services/collections remain responsive, ensuring we have enough funding/staffing/training to complete our mission, and finding ways to collaborate to improve our work.  Our institutions may be different, but we are all really alike in our goals and challenges.

I left feeling extremely hopeful about the possibilities we have to be more collaborative among divisions of ILA and various types of librarians in general. Public Librarians want to work with us on programming and supporting school curriculum. Academic Librarians were very vocal about how much what we do helps them when students get to higher ed, and want to work with us more to develop the skills students need. 

I have been inspired to do more to reach out to public librarians and academic librarians in (or beyond!) my area to begin a collaborative relationship. These types of relationships will not only help us to learn more about the strengths of other libraries, but also to improve the services we all offer to our patrons - whether they are babies, students, or adults. 

We already know the value of collaborating within our schools, but we are at the perfect point in time for us to reach beyond our silos and embrace the incredible skills and opportunities we can offer when we work together as a profession.  I encourage you to reach out, attend ILA Conference in October, and stay committed to improving the contributions our profession makes to the world!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Summer Reading Memories of ICCA authors

Summer reading serves an important academic role. Kids who read in the summer maintain or increase their reading achievement when they return to school in the fall. They expand their vocabulary, background knowledge, and understanding of text structure. In the best of situations they also form positive memories of the act of reading which support literacy learning at school.

In their book Memory At Work In The Classroom Bailey and Pransky describe our autobiographical memory as "the information we remember about our personal lives, including specific remembered events....it is a synthesis of our experiences and includes our likes, dislikes, and preferences. It profoundly informs our sense of self: it is our identity."  
Inviting our students to share their memories of summer reading and learning help to form their identity as someone who reads.

Adding to the previous set of summer reading memories here is another batch from authors of Iowa Children's Choice Award nominated books.  Perhaps these autobiographical pieces could be the spark for a quick write session to gather student's summer reading memories.  Posting these vignettes around the library would be a great back-to-school display. Speaking of displays - Amy Kay, literacy teacher at Creek, is organizing a school-wide reading display. To kick things off teachers send in a photo of themselves reading in their favorite summer spot with a book they would like to promote in the new school year (wish I had thought of this idea!). My contribution to the effort is pictured here and I will share the completed display soon. Did you read some of the nominated titles this summer?  Share your memories and reactions on twitter using the hashtag #iakidpicks



"I grew up in Cincinnati, OHio.  It is very hot and humid in summer, and we did not have air conditioning. I remember trying to find the coolest possible spot to read.  There was a ginko tree next to an abandoned school building that was perfect for climbing, and this is where I spent hours with a book.  I had a special perch that was very comfortable because three branches were close together, forming a perfect seat.  I went there alone very early in the morning and read The Secret Garden.  Sometimes as it got later, neighbors would join me, and each person brought a book.  Sometimes when we finished books, we traded them with each other so I had a chance to read comic books and mysteries that I might not have selected on my own.  It was fun when two or three of us read the same book so we could talk about our favorite parts.  Climbing trees and reading books were my favorite summertime activities."  ~Andrea Chang




"I spent my whole summers reading when I was in school. I always took a pile of books with me to camp. When I was old enough to have a job, I took a book with me on the long, blistering hot subway ride from Brooklyn into Manhattan and back. Books were the only way I could make it bearable. Books filled a whole wall of my bedroom. The first thing I ever bought with my own money was a book: John Myers Myers The Alamo."  ~ Eric A. Kimmel







"I have an impressive scar on my knee from my summer reading adventures!  Picture a skinny kid riding two miles on a bike with a cloth book bag filled full in one hand, and steering with the other hand. It was a real balancing act, and one day I must have chosen one Laura Ingalls Wilder, or Beverly Cleary, or Roald Dahl book too many, and down I crashed.  That scrape didn’t stop me from returning the next day to the air-conditioned, hushed, full-of-wonder Waterloo library.  We were a big, hustle and bustle family of readers, and a library card was essential all year long, but especially those long summer months.  Summer reading could give a kid ideas, too.  Reading “My Side of the Mountain” kept me scouring the woods looking for a tree that was big enough to live in, just like Sam.  Reading “Henry and the Paper Route” inspired me to get a summer paper route, and the “Scouts in Action” feature in Boys’ Life Magazine (a favorite!) made me on the watch for anyone in need of rescue. 


I remember feeling giddy, grateful, and also a little powerful entering our public library, and those feelings have remained, just like the scar on my knee!" ~ Maribeth Boelts



"I spent my childhood summers on a small island in the middle of Lake Michigan.  We didn’t have a television, home computers and video games hadn’t been invented yet so we had to make our own fun.  One day when I was around ten years old, my father brought home a giant black rubber inner tube he’d picked up somewhere.  My sister and I took turns curling up inside it and rolling down a sand dune.  It was dizzying fun!  We  floated around the lake in it for hours of course, and bounced on it like a trampoline, but one afternoon when it was too cold and windy for swimming, and my sister was busy with a friend I found a new use for the inner tube.  I plucked a paperback mystery off the shelf – I’ve always been a mystery lover - rolled the inner tube down to the beach, plopped it down in the sand and climbed in. What a perfect beach chair it made!  The sun shone on the black rubber, warming it up, and as the waves lapped at the shoreline and the gulls wheeled overhead, I read that book cover to cover. It was pure bliss." ~ Sarah Weeks

Posted by Ernie Cox  /@erniec