Saturday, April 25, 2009

027.8 Library of Congress: Going Where the Users Are!

Library of Congress videos on YouTube...potential overdose for this  history & trivia dabbler! But how cool of them to take all their great stuff and put it out for all to see and use! Going where the users are instead of sitting back and waiting for them to come to them.* Aren't libraries just getting so smart these days! ;-) 

Look at the two samples I pulled up in the first five minutes I was in the new collection.

[I have requested conversions of these from Zamzar so they can be seen in district. When I get them and have a few moments to upload them...I'll add them. Even more reason for this important resource to be available at school...ALL schools!]


*I intend to still  get there some day to the "real thing" and be able to stare up into that beautiful dome!

Friday, April 24, 2009

027.8 A Good List of Librarians

If you want to check out what blogging librarians are talking about these days, here's a Top 50 list...although it really is a Top 40s + 10 Tweeters...and I won't go there tonight...still trying to wrap my head around that concept. Suffice it to say, the Tweeters have plenty of important (and fun) things to say too!

I have read and follow regularly 9 out of the top 10 plus a bunch further down the line. And I am pleased to say that I have had opportunity to hear many of these fine folks in extra treat! I have a feeling I'll be adding a few more once I give myself time to completely work through the list. 

There are a few missing from the list in my opinion. Among them are Blue Skunk and Library Stuff who have been teaching me a lot over several years! But it's not my list. Enjoy what is there!

Take a'll learn something...all the time!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

612.8 The Power of Touch

A good friend sent this to me.

Please take the minute AND 40 seconds it takes to watch the ENTIRE video. It is worth it!
And then tell me you couldn't make several lessons for any age level.
I dare you!

And then go hold hands (even virtually) with someone!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

004.165 Shouting from the Rooftops: I Have a MAC!!

Yippy skippy! Good things DO come to those who wait...can't help it...I have a brand new sleek, slick, shiny new MacBook Pro with ( yes, screen envy made me do it)... a S-E-V-E-N-T-E-E-N INCH screen!

Just look at how beautiful this desktop is. One reason is it is computers are just so clean aren't they?  And second reason...the picture is gorgeous...many in my circle will understand the significance of the view! 

I will admit I do miss the adobe/little blue window/chili pepper desktop of my old PC, but not all the PC drama! It has been a long, often painful wait to come back to Mac. 

Can't help it, it's cool. My NECC adventure last summer...when virtually all the cool people people doing the coolest things were ALL doing them on sealed the deal...and dropping my PC during my post-IKE move last September didn't hurt...hummmm, did you say subconscious "accident"...just now thought of that. No, I really did just now think about that!

The trash can is in the lower right corner where all good trash cans should be...and it is a cute little silver mesh one...and when you throw something hear the crumbling of the paper. But the best...screen shots...yup, you hear the little camera click!!

and look at the cute little stickies

Yes, I know simple pleasures...
but I don't's mine and I get to play with it all I want! And I intend to have a lot of fun!

Friday, April 10, 2009

973.0992 Presidents: Playful Presentations

Gave myself permission to spend some time playing so in doing so I made a stop by YouTube and look what I found. 

I did take time to convert these two videos using the Zamzar site so that it would be available in district (and other places where YouTube is blocked.) This time it was successful although the uploading sure did seem to take a long time. Guess I just need to remember patience is a virtue and all good things come to those who wait!

Anyway...this first  video morphs the presidents from Washington to Obama. I found myself concentrating on the eyes as the changes were made. Take a look...I think you will find it interesting on some level.

This second video is a rap of the presidential list, again from Washington to Obama. Catchy little tune goes with it!

I know neither of these items is heavy-duty in the learning and education department...not brain surgery or nuclear science...but they are fun...and similar types of activities could be created by students and a lot of learning value could be had.

For now, I'm just asking you to enjoy!

P.S. Visited the Educational Rap site. Would be worth some time. It also has its own channel on YouTube as well. Who knew there would be a rap about photosynthesis!

The morphed video was originally uploaded by polvideo.

Monday, April 6, 2009

025.4 Dewey Decimal Fun

Can't help it...too much fun not to share.


I went ahead and converted it from Youtube with Zamzar because I wanted you to see it whenever you wanted! UPDATE 4-10-09: Got the converted file to load so now you can see in district or wherever Youtube is blocked.

Anyway...think the kids got more out doing this than just learning the bet!

Originally created and uploaded to YouTube by scooterstories

Sunday, April 5, 2009

028.5 Multi-tasking Librarian: In the Right Place

I have said it many times, but it is never enough. I work with the greatest bunch of school librarians. I have made a promise to try and show them off as much as I can. I started my efforts here and here.

Check out the latest efforts of this elementary librarian. When a gift fell into her lap, she jumped at the chance and gave some of her students a wonderful experience with an author and his very popular books...all the same time she was preparing an outstanding presentation to give to administrators seeking answers to how libraries (and more importantly, librarians) can impact student success! Check out the Animoto of her kids. She is a walking advertisement for that type of success.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

027.8 Librarians at Play: TLA Presentation about 2.0 Tools

A 23 Things friend asked me to visit her TLA presentation during TLA conference last week. I am glad because it was a great discussion of using things pre-K /12 and I saw some ideas that were new to me...and fun and exciting!

There was a group of private school librarians who were presenting 2.0  things that they had used with their students during the past year. Some of them work in schools where every student has access to a laptop and nothing on the internet is blocked. Others operate with similar roadblocks that the rest of us must endure. But everyone encouraged the audience to do what they could!

As a group, they realize that security, working within the context of existing tools, advertising issues on some sites, filters, and time are all things that have to be considered with learning new things and teaching them to students.

Some statements that stood out to me were:
"Try everything! Try a few things, but try something!"
"It is ok to fail."
"Joyce Valenza for real people" --paying homage to the queen of library 2.0 matters, while recognizing that not all of us can do it at her level!

My friend presented the project that her 2nd grade students did with Flat Stanley and tied it to a Google maps activity. They mailed Flat Stanley to long distance family members and asked them to take him along on an adventure and send pictures back. Here is a link to an Animoto about the project. 

Her 4th grade students studied about magazines and then created a magazine cover using animals and other science topics as the themes for their magazines. Here is an Animoto about them.

Another presenter uses Library Thing to advertise the new books that have been added to the school's collection. If my notes are correct, she scans the bar code on the back of the book and that pulls up a cover which she adds to other titles to make a collage. The collage is placed in emails to students and teachers and she also prints out a copy for reference when students come in. They often refer to the books by cover rather than title! I am not familiar with this procedure myself, but I'm sure it something for which there is more info. She also writes about books in her blog Print Matters.

Another librarian talked about the benefits of Google docs, especially with middle school students who can't drive themselves to collaboration opportunities. She told the group that her students come form 28 zip codes!!...and to do group projects is often impossible because the students live so far apart. But Google docs eliminated some the problems. She did mention that Google docs dow not support PPT 2007, but they found that Zoho docs does so when they need to, they use that resource as well.

A few more topics covered in the presentation included:
Creating a ning for historical people of importance. Group them according the time period. The students write profiles, etc. based on the individuals they are studying.
The Horizon Projects...a wiki with lots of things from the educational 2.0 world. and music for the library links under one link to make sharing easier. 

Their TLA conference handout Get Busy: Unique Challenges in Private Schools and Web 2.0 is not active yet, but if it does become available, I will hot link it here.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

025.3 Checking Out Cataloging at TLA

There were several cataloging sessions presented at TLA this year and I decided that they would be at the top of my list as much as possible. I know you are asking why and there are several very good reasons. First off, I am the cataloger of record in my district, and although we have a very serious rule of "buy processed," I still get asked some tough questions by the librarians in my circle of influence and I have to be on top of what is what so that I can be sure the vendors "do it right" as well. I am teaching cataloging to some new librarians and I wanted to be sure I was teaching the right stuff...turns out I was/am with one small exception which I will touch on later.
Several of the topics were simply interesting...and some of the presenters are simply "rock stars" in the field and deserved my time for what they know!

As anyone who has attended TLA knows all too well, you can't see and do it all so there were some cataloging sessions I missed. One was Cataloging Reconsidered: Is LOC Still the Nation's Cataloger. The link takes you to some useful information found on the LOC site. Another session, Not the Dreaded Cart Again! A Cataloger's Nightmare is currently not active in the session handouts section. The info was presented by Scott Piepenburg who has put several books together that do help a librarian who finds herself/himself having to take care of cataloging issues. 

I did attend the session about MarcEdit. another session that currently does not have an active link on the
 TLA page  I hate to admit that I came away not totally understanding it and all that it can do for individual librarians. But the website is very comprehensive and I do plan to go thru it carefully for any assistance it can provide.

I also attended the session Cataloging 101 for School and Public Librarians presented by a true rock star of the cataloging world, Joanna Fountain. She knows everything, but has such a realistic view of what busy school librarians can and can not spend time on when it comes to cataloging materials. I have always appreciated how she takes large amounts of information and distills it down to the essential components. You can learn a lot from her sample book as to what is needed in records covering all formats.

Some her comments during the session included 
what is the catalog for
to show what the library has
and what ELSE does the library have
Users should be able to make successful choices based on the info...that is an important job of the cataloger to be sure that can happen and then also being sure that the info to find the material is properly complete.

The librarian/cataloger must understand the audience, know the system that will contain the records and understand content rules, be they AACR2 or the upcoming RDA

As far as having a classification tool, the Dewey abridged is sufficient. LC subject  authorities are available online for free at the LOC website

Fountain did explain with the change in the rules that are being worked on, the term  preferred instead of authority will be the new term of choice in RDA

Steps the librarian/cataloger must think about include:
1st what is this item?
2nd what is chief source of info for this kind of item?
3rd is there a MARC template for this type of material to guide in deciding what is needed, and needed correctly?

Fountain also brought certain things about some fields/tags and sub-headings:

245 - Keep all the diacritics in the title and author , but watch the system you use. Some systems turn them into weird characters!
And the same thing I have to remain my students...Capitalize only the first word and proper nouns in any titles...for get what you learned in English...for the moment!

260 - Why is the place of publication important? Because it can affect the version selected. And what about all those publishers and imprints...go with what appears on the title page...even if it is an imprint! And just as I have always tried to explain...there is a difference between publication date (printing) and the copyright. If you choose to use the copyright date, it always needs the "c" before it. It is best to use the newest date, but very important to be consistent. I know in our district we have that consistency. Newest date first!

When talking a little about AV, Fountain reminded all of us that when working on videos, we now have to think about VHS (on its way out), DVD, or  Blu-ray...the newest format that will need to be included in 538.

She also mentioned that the 2nd indicator in the subject fields (600, 650, 651, etc.) should be filled with a "1" indicating that the material is in a children's CATALOG, not necessarily that the material is a child's book!   

Fountain also shared information about the IFLA (International Federation of Library Associations. There is lots of info about cataloging electronic materials...useful for libraries trying to keep up with all the great stuff online!

She indicated that she would try to answer questions

Time well spent!

027.8 School Librarians, Libraries and Administrators

Today was the first full conference day at TLA. The Strong Libraries, Strong Scores Administrators' Conference was held today. We had about 85 principals, assistant principals, central office staff and some trustees from around the state come to hear learn from, and work with a series of speakers who filled them in on the value of their school librarians, libraries, and the contributions of both to the overall school success.

The early reactions seem to be all positive. The administrators' learned and shared and went away with lots of information to use in making changes back on their campuses...OR left knowing that their programs are indeed contributing to success already!

Keith Curry Lance, Marla McGhee, Barbara Jansen and two local principal-librarian teams from Pasadena and Spring Branch shared valuable statistics, important concepts and LOTS of practical things to use and do. Both presenters and participants alike asked and answered lots questions and covered lots of concerns.

This is the 5th time that administrators have been invited to participate in this event that was conceived from the White House 2002 meeting about school libraries. And with anything worth doing, this year added to the success found during each of the preceding years. Lots of school children and teens will benefit from the gathering today. That's the best anyone can wish!

P.S. Thanks to the group responsible for the fun and games at the party earlier this evening...especially the music! I knew all the words. Needless to say, the great band that played, played lots and lots and lots of oldies, but goodies. It was hard at time to know who was having more fun---the performers or the audience!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

027.8 Teamwork & School Librarians...With a Little Multi-tasking Thrown In

Today was a busy day at TLA. The Strong Libraries, Strong Scores Administrators' Conference was held today...more about that important event in detail a bit later! That necessitated a committee of school librarians who were willing to give of most of one day at conference to help this mini-conference happen.

And this year, this all-important volunteer opportunity fell on a group of librarians from my district, who, when I asked, stepped up to the plate and said yes to whatever! Some parts of the morning were busy, some parts were a tad stressful, but most parts were just plain boring with a lot of sitting around...waiting, and waiting much more patiently than I!

But never let it be said that this group of librarians ever let an opportunity for bonding, relationship building, collaborating, and /or sharing go by. Some were sharing knowledge about personal learning devices (aka fancy phones!), some were learning tips and tricks from each other while allowing a colleague to practice a presentation, and others were just taking time to get to know each other a bit better...all at the same time remaining poised to take on any conference task that bubbled to the surface.

The group of librarians in my circle of influence and my learning community are the greatest, and today only proved the point one more time! Nothing, absolutely nothing did they let go by...they took care of details, large and small, and with smiles on their faces. They counted and recounted simply because I asked; they made trips down the long halls or over to the convention center just because I needed something checked on...again! Some of them even babysat lunches...while important sessions over in the convention center went on without them.

They know who they are, but here is a visual record of my all my right-hands from today. They insisted that I had to be part or there would be no visual record. I am proud to be among them even though I did grumble a bit!

And now for the multi-tasking part: I took advantage of sharing their smiling faces along with how proud I am to call them not only colleagues but friends, but to also showcase two samples of image generator new to me-- BeFunky, and a favorite Dumpr and a particular technique found in both. Pretty cool don't you think?
P.S. Thanks AGAIN to the team...and to BF, a helper from a neighboring district!