Monday, September 30, 2013

How does one advocate for information literacy?

Our national and state governments have declared October as Information Literacy Awareness Month.   Find out more about the National Forum On Information Literacy


What are the factors affecting the implementation of information literacy among teacher librarians? At the bottom of this blog webpage is a poll asking you to reflect and think about how you can change your library setting to work towards change.  The poll is open until October 31st. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Book Review: The 5th Wave

Cassie Sullivan is living a quiet life with her family, with the normal concerns of a teenage girl,   when an alien ship is spotted within our solar system.  Are they friendly?  Will they attack?  For days, nothing happens.  Then suddenly, all electricity is knocked out throughout the world.  Days later, tsunamis take out the coasts.  Next, sickness kills a large percentage of the population.  In the fourth wave, aliens systematically hunt the remaining humans.  But the worst is yet to come in...the fifth wave.  How will Cassie survive?  How will she know who to trust?  And how can she save not only what remains of her family, but possibly the remainder of her own humanity?

The 5th Wave, by Rick Yancey, is an action-packed science fiction novel that asks the question, “What if an alien invasion isn’t the full-out attack we think it will be?”  The characters are likable and realistic, and the plot keeps you guessing until the end.  Readers who enjoy end-of-the world type novels like Life as We Knew It or Ashfall, or alien invasion books such as The Host or Ender's Game, will love The 5th Wave.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Freedom to Read and Banned Books Week Working to Promote Intellectual Freedom

“The freedom to read is essential to our democracy. It is continuously under attack...." — Freedom to Read Statement

At the AASL Affiliate Assembly, state associations were encouraged to consider an organizational membership in The Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF), a non-profit legal and educational organization affiliated with (but not part of) the American Library Association. While the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom offers advice and resources related to intellectual freedom, the FTRF actually supports litigation related to censorship and other intellectual freedom issues. For $50, the Iowa Association of School Librarians now is an organizational member supporting important work in defense of free speech.
Find the FTRF on facebook at:

Banned Books Week Sept. 22-28, 2013

One: Stay Informed
Two: Challenge Censorship
Three: Support Your Local Schools and Libraries
Four: Check out a Banned Book!

Did you know…. Dav Pilkey's Captain Underpants tops the frequently challenged books list of 2012

“Every burned book enlightens the world.” Ralph Waldo Emerson

Check out the link below to find...this map is drawn from cases documented by ALA and the Kids' Right to Read Project, a collaboration of the National Coalition Against Censorship and the American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression. 

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Sharing Ideas as Advocacy

"What is obvious to you, is amazing to others."

In our profession, we must share our ideas, our experiences, our successes and failures with one another - and with the public. If we stay silent, we keep others from sharing in our "genius" moments, and worst of all, hide the great things we and our colleagues do for students in our schools.

Thanks to Kathy Kaldenberg for always reminding us of this saying and "living" it in real life, too! You can follow Kathy (@scsdmedia) and other great Iowa Teacher Librarians on Twitter. Follow our organization @IowaASL and check our followers and following lists for more inspirational folks to add to your PLN!

Let's all share our ideas and advocate for our students' right to great librarians!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Join us in Coralville for IASL Membership Meeting

The Iowa Association of School Librarians holds its Annual Membership Meeting as part of the Iowa Library Association Conference each year. This year’s conference runs from October 16-18 in Coralville.

This year’s IASL Membership meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Oct. 17th, from 4:30-5:15 at the Coralville Marriott.  Our meeting will be held in the following room, Oakdale III.

This year’s theme is Healthy Libraries Build Healthy Communities. Jean Thompson, author of this year’s All Iowa Reads title The Year We Left Home, will speak at Friday’s luncheon. Other presenters include Ted Wegner, the Grassroots Coordinator for the American Library Association Washington Office, and Emily Sheketoff, the Associate Executive Director of the American Library Association’s Washington Office. Ted is the son of retiring State Librarian Mary Wegner.

More information about the conference is available on the ILA Web Site at

Here is a link to the July/August 2013 Catalyst , which features articles about the conference:

As IASL's representative on the ILA Planning Committee, I welcome your input on the ILA Conference. You can contact me at: 

School Librarians as Technology Integration Leaders

What does 21st century learning look like to you and how are you making it a reality in your school? Join an upcoming webinar sponsored by Atomic Learning to participate in the process of becoming a technology instructor. Sessions last 30 minutes. 

Going Mobile in the Classroom

Do you have a BYOD or 1-1 initiative that has begun or is already in full swing?  Are you looking for resources for energizing the classroom in using mobile devices?  Attend this 30 minute webinar to see how the resources in Atomic Learning can help you effectively use mobile devices in your classroom!

Register for a session now by clicking a date below:

Research Paper Basics for Teachers and Students

Did you know Atomic Learning has what you need to refresh yourself on writing research papers?  Whether you are a graduate student or having students write research papers, stop in on this 30 minute session to see how Atomic Learning can help you (and your students) with the research strategies all the way through from the title page to bibliography!

Register for a session now by clicking a date below


"I'm not sure how to get to the T in STEM… how do I effectively bring technology into my classes?  I know my students should be using technology, but I don't know how to teach something I don't understand myself."

If you've had thoughts like these, join us to see how Atomic Learning can support you and your efforts with our 21st Century Skills projects and tech skills tutorials.

Register for a session now by clicking a date below:

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Iowa Teen Award Nominees

Need a quick run down of the 15 titles nominated for the Iowa Teen Award this year?

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Madam ? speaks

Our very own Diane Brown who serves as chair of the membership committee shares her thoughts about working as a teacher librarian.  Who is the fictional character Diane would most like to be for a day? Watch the video to find out!