A whole world of knowledge can be found online if you just know where to look. For example you can find others searching for the same answers to copyright questions you may have, find librarians debating the use of Kindle’s in the library, get ideas to prove that you as a LMS are vital to the school, find an untold number of book reviews, interviews with authors and much more.
When looking at the LM_NET postings I found a few of interest. The first one was from Becky Schallar and it was a copyright question, specifically student use of images found online. This is of particular interest to me as a Desktop Publishing teacher. The final consensus was images found online may be used in an educational setting as long as there is a limited audience and proper citation. For example my students could use photographs found online for their travel brochures as long as they have proper citations because only myself and their classmates will see the work. If anything is to be posted online or distributed we would need to get permission from the author.
The second point of interest was Carol Van Brocklin, a librarian in the Philippines who is questioning the use of Kindle’s in the library. So far there had been no responses to Van Brocklin’s question but she shared what information she had found out. Amazon is talking about going to a 1:1 ratio of one Kindle to one account which means books could not be shared among devices. She did find that right now though it is still 1:6 so one account can be attached to six Kindles.
Finally I found a posting by Toni Koontz. In this posting she gives ideas for staying organized and keeping track of all that is done as a Library Media Specialist throughout the school year so a through end of the year report can be given to the principal.
Moving on to a different type of knowledge I went to reading blogs. The first blog I read was Adult Books 4 Teens. This is something I would have been interested in when I was younger because sometimes teen books were written below my reading level so I found them boring. Just checking back over the entries for the end of the week was enlightening. One book was about sexual exploitation in the US, another was hugely science fiction and the third was a graphic novel about eating disorders. Lucille by Ludovic Debeurme is the graphic novel in question. I had never considered how a graphic novel about a subject such as eating disorders could be so impactful. With the graphic novel readers are forced to see the damage to a person’s body an eating disorder can cause.
From there I switched gears and looked at the ALA TechSource blog and read up on their opinion of what Smartphone internet usage means for libraries. The first point is libraries must make sure their webpages are compatible with Smartphones. The second is libraries need to prove they provide the only access to high speed internet for many people. I know from experience if I want to get on the internet when I visit my parents I have to make my dad take me to his work after hours or go to the library since my parents can only get dial-up internet at home. After so much time spent with high speed I just cannot do dial-up anymore!
Next I went to read Doug Johnson’s Blue Skunk Blog and today’s entry made me smile. He was talking about the changing mindset of librarians and teachers entering those fields. Some of his points I had to add my own opinion to. Under the “Librarian’s entering the field today” heading with number 1, I have never typed a catalog card but do still remember learning how to use one and thinking they were cool back in elementary school. Going to 6, I will never purchase filmstrips, but will still have the fond memories of them in my 8th grade history class (mind you this was in 1998-1999 so they were pretty old even then). Then my personal favorite on his librarians list is 8, I will never check out the floppy disks of games but I still maintain Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego and Oregon Trail were the best games ever. Now when it comes to his list “Teachers entering the profession” I heartily disagree with his points 2 and 7. Number 2 says these teachers will never keep a paper gradebook, my school still requires a hardcopy along with the online grades in case something happens. Then number 7 says all teachers have a phone and voicemail in their classroom. I think there are 4 teachers in the building with a phone in their classroom.
When choosing podcasts to listen to (I really wanted to listen to the Teen Podcast from Seattle Public Libraries entitled “Harry and the Potters” which was teens playing music inspired by the Harry Potter books, but I wasn’t sure if it qualified as educational) I decided to go for the NPR: Books Podcast entitled “New Teen Novels, Terry Pratchett, Vampires, Werewolves and More dated August 18, 2011 and the Books on the Night Stand (BOTNS) episode 143 dated August 23, 2011. Both podcasts contained some book reviews.
The BOTNS began with an interesting innovation coming from a small publisher, Melville House Publishing, the hybrid book. This publisher is publishing books with a QR code (those square symbols you scan with your Smartphone) which takes the reader to “illuminations” which help fill in the backstory of the plot. It is likened to DVD extras for a book. Following this several new to paperback books were introduced one of which The Language of Flowers was also talked about in the Adult Books 4 Teens blog.
The NPR podcast began with 5 new young adult books worth reading either as a teen or even an adult. They included:
· Flip by Martin Bedford
· Delirium by Lauren Oliver
· 10 Miles Past Normal by Francis O’Roark Dowell
· Trapped by Michael Northup
· Karma by Cathy Ostlere
This section was followed by an interview with Terry Pratchett discussing his views on doctor assisted suicide, a review of The Family Fang (also included in the Adult Books for Teens) an interview with the author of Thick as Thieves and an interview with a close friend of LA Banks who recently passed away from cancer. This was probably my favorite part because I had read some of her books and enjoyed them. She was writing about vampires and werewolves before the days of Twilight and True Blood.