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A community for teacher-librarians and other educators

Librarians without borders: For those of us who connect, teach, share, and lead in new information landscapes.

Don't worry! A slight Ning redirect!

Hi Friends,

Just wanted to let you know that our Ning is going through a little refresh.  Your community will continue, but we are refocusing a bit to incorporate more global participation and the building or collaborative global projects.

Please also feel free to join our companion Google+ Community: GlobalTL.

Start thinking of how we might connect to each others and to our classroom teacher partners as librarians without borders!

Joyce

TL Guides: for all of us

Please visit and volunteer to help me build TLGuides

LibGuides/Springshare has given us a subscription to build for the profession and I would love just a few good editors.

Write me?

joycevalenza@gmail.com

 

Mighty Little Librarian

Library Wall Quotes

Three years ago during July of 2012, I posted about our library wall quotes and word cloud that I put up when we moved into the new library. Just three years later, and I felt like it was time for … Continue reading

The Sting of Rejection

I’ve been struggling with the idea of writing this post. I don’t want to come across as a complainer…I am incredibly blessed to have a career I love, and I feel that my hard work and commitment to my profession … Continue reading

The Digital Diva

SLJ News

The Nest by Kenneth Oppel | SLJ Review

Oppel, Kenneth. The Nest. illus. by Jon Klassen. 256p. ebook available. S. & S. Oct. 2015. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781481432320.

Gr 5-7–Steve has always been a worrier, but since his brother was born he’s become even more anxious. When Steve starts having dreams about otherworldly wasps, he takes comfort in their message that everything will be okay. But the more he learns about their plan to “fix” the baby’s congenital condition, the more he’s conflicted. The tension and unease grow as [...]

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon | SLJ Review

Yoon, Nicola. Everything, Everything. 320p. ebook available. Delacorte. Sept. 2015. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9780553496642.

Gr 10 Up–From the first page, Madeline Whittier is a sympathetic character who has had to watch the world from the inside of a bubble—literally. Her diagnosed condition of Severe Combined Immunodeficiency is a life sentence that limits her to a world of two people: her mother, who is a doctor, and her nurse. Everything changes when Olly and his family move into the house next door. [...]

The Seventh Most Important Thing by Shelley Pearsall | SLJ Review

Pearsall, Shelley. The Seventh Most Important Thing. 288p. ebook available. Knopf. Sept. 2015. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780553497281; lib. ed. $19.99. ISBN 9780553497298.

Gr 4-7–A middle school student learns the meaning of redemption in this excellent coming-of-age story. For the rest of the country, it was the year President Kennedy was assassinated. For Arthur Owens, it would always be the year his Dad died. Arthur is struggling to adapt. When he sees his Dad’s hat being worn by the neighborhood “Junk Man,” [...]

Strike Up the Band | M.T. Anderson and the Story Behind the Leningrad Symphony

SLJ chats with M.T. Anderson, SummerTeen speaker, about his first work of narrative nonfiction, Symphony for the City of the Dead, and the power of music to change lives and make history.

The Keeper by Darragh | SLJ Review

Martin, Darragh. The Keeper. 280p. glossary. Little Island. Jul. 2015. pap. $15.99. ISBN 9781908195845.

Gr 7 Up–Twelve-year-old Oisin Keane has grown up in the suburbs of Dublin without the slightest clue that he coexists with the ancient magic of the land. He and his youthful looking Granny Keane are the only members of the family with green eyes. Celtic folklore and legends attribute magical powers to those with green eyes, because green is said to be the color of Fairies’ eyes. [...]

ALA TechSource

New Library Technology Report: Library Services Platforms

Library Technology Reports (Vol. 51, No. 6) Library Services Platforms: A Mature Genre of Products, by Marshall Breeding, is at the printer. You can read it now, however, on ALA’s journal site: journals.ala.org/ltr.

The Report starts with an explanation of this class of products and how it has diverged from the traditional integrated library system to take advantage of platform architecture. You’ll see in-depth descriptions of Ex Libris Alma, Kuali OLE, OCLC WorldShare Management Services, ProQuest Intota, and Innovative Interfaces Sierra. While neutral on product recommendations, Breeding offers advice on selection and procurement strategies.

Library Technology Reports is open access through June 2015. We also have a special $99 offer on our digital subscription, which includes Smart Libraries Newsletter.

Subscribe to Library Technology Reports and Smart Libraries Newsletter for $99

Library Technology Reports and Marshall Breeding’s Smart Libraries Newsletter will be open access for another month. Be sure to check them out. And, if you like what you see, please subscribe. Our best offer is on—a 15-month digital subscription is only $99. Your library will save $150 off the regular price. And your purchase will fund advocacy, awareness, and accreditation programs for library professionals worldwide.

Now Open: Library Technology Reports and Smart Libraries Newsletter

Library Technology Reports and Smart Libraries Newsletter are on a new hosting platform, using Open Journal Systems. For a limited time, through June, both will be open access.

We’re hoping you will like what you see and get your library to subscribe.

This year brought a new cover design to our Library Technology Reports. Here's what's inside.

David Lee King, who has managed to keep a still up-to-date personal blog, wrote Managing Your Libraries Social Media Channels. Bohyun Kim wrote Understanding Gamification. She will also present a workshop on gamification Wednesday, May 6. If you’ve purchased it or are thinking about it, download her report. For our newest issue, Coding for Librarians, Andromeda Yelton surveyed colleagues to get ready-to-use-or-adapt snippets of code, as well as “deep dive” examples. She set up a companion website on Github. Even if you have the print issue in hand, you’ll want to download the PDF to link directly to the code samples on GitHub.

Marshall Breeding is libraryland’s authority on product development in the library automation industry. His Smart Libraries Newsletter presents news and analysis on both the business and technology side. Breeding recently published vendor responses to a survey on the privacy and security functions of major automation and discovery products. His goal was to increase awareness and start a conversation that might lead to needed improvements. How are your vendors protecting patron privacy? See Smart Libraries Newsletter, January 2015. A regular writer of Library Technology Reports, Breeding’s most recent issue is “Library Resource Discovery Products: Context, Library Perspectives, and Vendor Positions” and his “Library Services Platforms” is our forthcoming May/June 2015 issue.

We migrated the Library Technology Reports and Smart Libraries Newsletter archives from our previous platform. As report titles did not carry over, the archive list is by date of issue only, making findability a little challenging. The author index and search will help. To give you a taste of what's there, I'll point to a few “known-items,” hidden gems, especially for LIS students or anybody looking for background in a new area. Karen Coyle offers remarkably clear explanations of complex concepts, writing the back-to-back reports in 2010, Understanding the Semantic Web: Bibliographic Data and Metadata and RDA Vocabularies for a 21st Century Data Environment and then in 2012, Linked Data Tools: Connecting on the Web. In 2013, Mirela Roncevic wrote E-book Platforms for Libraries, surveying 51 vendors. Though product offerings have changed since, the report shows the breadth of the marketplace and various approaches to the business model.

The archives will remain open for Library Technology Reports one year after publication and for Smart Libraries Newsletter six months after publication.

We're joined on the platform by several other ALA publications. See the full list at journals.ala.org.

App Learning for Librarians

Nicole Hennig would love to see more librarians reviewing apps.

“Have you noticed how uniformed many of the app-store reviews are?” she asks readers of her recent Library Technology Report "Selecting and Evaluating the Best Mobile Apps for Library Services." Often people write a review without understanding what the app was meant to do. Or they dash off a technical support question. Librarianship has a long tradition of reviewing books. Now is the time to apply those well-honed skills to apps and help your community find what they need in a chaotic marketplace.

ltr_50_8_300.jpg

For a general guide to reviewing, Nicole recommends the the thorough Elements for Basic Reviews: A Guide for Writers and Readers of Reviews of Works in All Mediums and Genres,from the ALA/RUSA CODES Materials Reviewing Committee (2005).

She supplements that guide with her own checklist for reviewing mobile apps.

Nicole Hennig is busy writing and presenting on all things apps for librarians. She will be leading the ALA ecourse “Apps for Librarians: Empower Your Users with Mobile App Literacy” starting Monday, February 2 (also Groundhog day). In addition to selection and evaluation criteria, she covers a full range of library services, including accessibilty, content creation, and reference. For a taste of what’s covered, check out the recording of her November 2014 webinar. Visit Nicole’s web page for Apps4Librians.com for additional information about the course, a self-study version, and her other offerings. 

CES 2015 Press Day

Jason Griffey reports on what he saw at CES press day-- a few 3D printers, including Ultimaker, a good library option; another small robot programmable in Google's Blockly, a visual programming editor; Samsung's SSD; and a drone. The soundtrack starts rough, but is much better after one minute.

Jason's coverage of CES is sponsored by Spingshare. Visit his blog Pattern Recognition for ongoing reports.

Share your cutting edge practice!

OITP, LITA seek nominations for cutting-edge technology practices

Washington, D.C. – The American Library Association (ALA) Office for Information Technology Policy (OITP) and the Library & Information Technology Association (LITA) are soliciting nominations for best library practices using cutting-edge technology.

“Cutting edge” refers to tested and successful implementations of technological advancements used in services such as:

  • Improvements in traditional services and processes by inventing/re-inventing/twisting technology
  • Introduction of new, innovative services that are flexible and responsive to community needs
  • Methods for connecting libraries to their communities
  • Funding initiatives or organizational models that ensure library information technology will remain current
Nominations may be may for work in any of the following sample areas:
  • Application development (apps)
  • Architecture and design
  • Circulation (sorting, remote distribution, materials handling, delivery mechanisms)
  • Collections
  • Community services (to include equity, outreach, programming and assessment of services)
  • Curation
  • E-resources management services
  • Instruction/information literacy
  • Knowledge creation
  • Open source
  • Pathfinders
  • Patron services (to include self-services and privacy protection)
  • Participatory services (e.g., student-created content, community polling, wikis)
  • Professional development
  • Readers’ advisory
  • Reference services
  • Staff management (use of self-scheduling, recruitment and evaluation)
  • Unique missions
  • User interface
  • Web services
  • Other

Nominations should include the following:

  • A description of the project/service
  • An explanation of how the service/procedure is cutting-edge
  • Information about the evolution of the project (identification of need, why it is novel, funding sources/options, challenges, how success was measured, and recommendations)

Applicants may also submit supporting materials in a variety of media, such as Flickr, YouTube, video, audio, blogs, etc.).

Nominations:

  • Must involve the use of technology
  • Must be a novel idea or implementation of a service
  • Must be able to be documented for replication
  • Must be for a library that has been involved in the development of the service or product (can’t just buy something off the shelf) or has enhanced the product for added value

A joint committee of members from the Subcommittee on America’s Libraries for the 21st Century and LITA will review all nominations and may conduct selected interviews or site visits to identify those libraries that are truly offering a best practice or most innovative service.  Libraries or library service areas will be publicized via the OITP and LITA websites, as well as highlighted through ALA publications and programs at the ALA Annual Conference in 2012. 

The nomination form (.docx) is available online and may be emailed or faxed to Larra Clark at lclark@alawash.org or fax 202-628-8419.

Learn more about the program and past winners on the OITP website.

 

ISTE Conference! Join us in Philadelphia

Connected Learning. Connected World.

Check out ISTE at a glance 

Forum

Lesson plan resources for pre-k through 6th grade - New Librarian 4 Replies

Started by Amy Skrovan. Last reply by Wafaa el Jammal Jul 16.

Fines in Secondary 10 Replies

Started by Suzanna L. Panter. Last reply by Shawn Jul 7.

Kindles in the library

Started by Pat Rideout Apr 2.

Brain Hive?

Started by Kelly A. Clark Mar 16.

Rationale for Library Redesign 3 Replies

Started by Elizabeth Ullrich. Last reply by EJ Mar 16.

How quiet is your library? 2 Replies

Started by EJ. Last reply by Alice Sajdera Jan 29.

Maker Spaces for the Financially Challenged 3 Replies

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Don't miss the new wiki Elementary Library Routines. Share your best ideas and learn from others in your tribe!

Blog Posts

More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

More Happy Than Not More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



Thank you to NetGalley, Soho Press and Soho Teen for the ARC, More Happy Than… Continue

Posted by BJ Neary on July 31, 2015 at 7:53pm

Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray

Lair of Dreams (The Diviners, #2) Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



Thank you to NetGalley and Little, Brown Books for Young Readers for the ARC, Lair of Dreams by… Continue

Posted by BJ Neary on July 19, 2015 at 8:36pm

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

<a href="https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/18693763-everything-i-never-told-you" style="float: left; padding-right: 20px"><img alt="Everything I Never Told You" border="0" src="https://d.gr-assets.com/books/1386795198m/18693763.jpg" /></a><a href="…

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Posted by BJ Neary on July 13, 2015 at 6:27pm

Girl On a Train by Paula Hawkins

The Girl on the Train The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins

My rating: 4 of 5 stars



I loved the voices of Rachel, Megan and Anna in this thriller… Continue

Posted by BJ Neary on July 13, 2015 at 6:23pm

X: a Novel by Ilyasah and Kekla Magoon

X: A Novel X: A Novel by Ilyasah Shabazz

My rating: 5 of 5 stars



X is the fictional retelling of the early life of Malcolm X with his daughter and stellar, Kekla Magoon. Thoroughly… Continue

Posted by BJ Neary on July 13, 2015 at 6:11pm

Cha...cha..cha..changes!

Well, isn't that the life of a teacher librarian? We are constantly changing what we do and how we do it.

This summer I moved every book in my library and discarded some very old non-essential materials and made lists to replace them with 21st century materials. I also dumped all of my VHS tapes. Yes, you read this correctly. ALL VHS tapes are gone.

There are two reasons for dumping the technology. First, it is ancient technology in schools today when we have laptops instead of…

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Posted by Shawn on July 7, 2015 at 6:49pm

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More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

More Happy Than Not by Adam SilveraMy rating: 5 of 5 starsThank you to NetGalley, Soho Press and Soho Teen for the ARC, More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera. Aaron Soto is a character you will not soon…See More
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