Monday, January 26, 2015

AASL School Crisis Toolkit: Where Does Your School Stand?

Depending on where your school are some reminders of tools that may work for you. 

How are things going? I estimate that we are close to the mid point of the school year. Is the library in dire straights or are things thriving? A place to start if your school library is in dire straights...School Library Crisis Toolkit.

Evidence-Based Practice is a hot topic as of late. Since this topic was not discussed in the graduate program enrolled in, I am very curious about its applications in a school setting.  I wonder what connections if any EBP has to prosperous school library programs. If interested I recommend checking out the January/February 2015 edition of AASL's Knowledge Quest.

Infographics Galore

Make a statement and change the conversation with AASL Advocacy Resources.

Don't forget about white papers such as Causality: School Libraries and Student Success (CLASS) and personal learning networks, they may help point you in a direction that works for you and your patrons.

Good luck and my motto is just ask! 

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

STEM/STEAM Series: Recreating Library Spaces

STEM science technology engineering math written in white chalk on a black chalkboard isolated on white - stock photo

At the next monthly meeting with my principal I am setting the tone by asking the following questions. The ball is in his court.

How do you want to reinvent the library? How do you envision the library in the next 5, 10, 15 years?

If STEM/STEAM is moving along nicely in your school district this may be an avenue to pursue for teacher librarians. Don't worry if you aren't a STEAM superstar since providing guidance, support, knowledge, and options to explore are keys to success in the school library.

Articles that may be of interest

Knowledge Quest article January/February 2015 New Territory for School Library Research: Let the Data Speak by Mega Subramaniam

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Book Review: The Testing, by Joelle Charbonneau

In the United Commonwealth, the Testing is one of the highest honors a student could receive.  In the Five Lakes Colony, Cia has dreamed of being selected for the Testing since she was a child, though no one has been selected from Five Lakes in recent memory.  When she graduates and still no one is selected, her dreams are crushed and her future is uncertain.

But when a government official arrives the next day, after transportation troubles, Cia and three of her classmates discover that they have been chosen for the Testing, and will leave their families the following day to travel to Tosu City.  After Cia’s initial excitement, she is nervous and hesitant, especially after her father tells her about nightmares he still has after he went through the Testing, even after a memory wipe, and he tells her to trust no one.

So many questions follow Cia on her journey.  What exactly is the Testing?  Why are there so many secrets surrounding the Testing?  Who can Cia trust?  Will she ever see her family again?  And what kind of future can she expect after the Testing...or will she have a future at all?

The Testing, by Joelle Charbonneau, is a fast-paced dystopian novel, along the lines of Hunger Games and Divergent.  Some similar themes include government secrets and control, contestants with the desire and ability to take out the competition, and mind games.  The other books in the trilogy, Independent Study and Graduation Day, are available as well.  If you are looking for a new dystopian thriller, give The Testing a try.

Monday, January 12, 2015

STEM/STEAM Series: Full STEAM Ahead Collaboratively with Consortiums

Where can we to start to implement STEM/STEAM? I am thinking that purchasing STEM/STEAM items and marketing them could be a starting point. 

No library can collect everything so collaborative collection development is how libraries
maximize access and stretch their budgets. 

Possible funding sources could be:
● The consortium’s overseeing body
● Individual institutional end-of-year funds
● Outside grants
● Potential donors

If each consortium developed lists of titles (print, multimedia, electronic) to spend the money then the resources could be shared. 

Next groups create target audiences for the campaigns and services or
resources you want to market. Having some sort of marketing campaign artifact and plan helps reach your designated population and makes your product marketable. 

A guide that may be useful is YALSA Wiki STEM_Resources

Friday, January 9, 2015

Thinking About Thinking? Let Tips From AASL Webinar Help

Getting organized so you can think less and accomplish more may be in store for you. 

View details in your web browser.

Don't Miss This Upcoming Webinar

Get Thinking! Making the Most of Your Library Time

See How to Challenge and Engage Learners, Expect More, and Support Academic Achievement

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

7:00 p.m. Eastern / 6:00 p.m. Central /
5:00 p.m. Mountain / 4:00 p.m. Pacific

Presenters: Paige Jaeger and Mary Boyd Ratzer
This generation will grow up and run the world, so let's get them thinking! The educational paradigm is shifting, requiring us to move from rote and recall to rigor and research. In this webinar, we'll share 10 examples of assignments, read-alouds, research essential questions, and library activities that require students to think! This will be a fun hour to contemplate whether you are tapping into our student's greatest asset--the brain! Register Now!
Note: Attendance at the live webinar is open to all. Only AASL members and AASL eCOLLAB subscribers will have access to the webinar archive. A seat in the live webinar is guaranteed to the first 100 attendees. As a webinar registrant, you will receive follow up correspondence from AASL.

Did you know?

In eCOLLAB | Your eLearning Laboratory - a feature of AASL membership - you'll find webcasts, podcasts, and resources from various AASL professional development events. Members can also view a read-only version of the latest issue of AASL’s print journal, Knowledge Quest. Fit professional development into your schedule! Visit eCOLLAB today!

Monday, January 5, 2015

STEM/STEAM Series: Left Brain & Too Much STEM

Left brain thinking and STEM too much of a good thing?

School libraries support the curriculum and recreational interests of all students and staff. We want students to have a well balanced education as well as provide opportunities for people to discover subjects in depth.

These two articles remind me of the strong influences of educational movements and how they influence the educational philosophies and day to day lives of our youth. Educational, social and economic movements impact school library services.

Is the U.S. Focusing Too Much on STEM?
"Some critics say the recent obsession with science and tech compromises other parts of kids' education" (Ossola).

Left-Brian America: STEM Education in the 21st century

Just some food for thought as we enter the year 2015.