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We've redesigned our website. Please drop by and check out the changes?

You'll no longer have to login to access our resource kits.

We've added a direct link to the Information Fluency Group here on the TeacherLibrarian Network to our main menu.

We're developing an integrated blog and wiki.

We've added an online store that will streamline Moodle course registration.

The conversion process to our new server has been a long and interesting road. We've still got a few bumps to smooth out. If you notice a problem let us know.In the meantime, take a look and them let us know what you think of the new design?

Dennis & Carl
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Slam Poetry

This is a promotion of a sort. And in the spirit of the students who invited me to listen, and record, I am going to lay myself a little bare in explaining why all of this mattered.
I am burned out. I spend my days not sure whether to cry or rage. I am frustrated with entitled students who either a) don't want to learn or b) don't want to think. I know it seems like the same thing but in this era of testing they can consume information without thinking, and feel as if they are learning. I am frustrated beating my head against the same brick wall of staff members that I have for the last 8 years. They will not consider changing, no matter what the suggestion made by who, the thinking goes "we are a good school, we are doing it right, why should we consider doing anything different." I am ready to throw the baby out with the bath water when it comes to technology so irritated am I by what I cannot do for no established reason, and by the mere fact that the systems in place DO NOT WORK! I am limited in my opportunities. I need a new challenge, something to bring the passion back to what it is I do - because once, once I LOVED this job. And really I still do - but I am burned out right now.
So I have a deal with my spouse - he does not ask me how my day went, and I will not tell him. 2 weeks ago I came home totally hyped up. I had what was one of the best student and teacher experiences that I had in say, 5 years. I was invited (well, really I invited myself) to sit in on a "modified" poetry slam, a reading for AAI (our school within a school Arts Institute.) I recorded the poems and promised to post them online - which I have done in a wiki which is a work in progress. I was blown away by their performances, the interest in the room, and the commitment that the students made to this assignment. Today I recorded another set of performances that I will post to the wiki over Winter break.
Meanwhile they have continued to impress me. On their own several students attended a local slam. They have viewed the wiki, and discussed whether to post their names, should it be promoted, if posting the text of their poetry will change the nature of the reading, and stunningly they asked how to protect their intellectual property. We agreed on a Creative Commons license. They are excited about their poetry, and their performances were funny, challenging, personal, sad, uplifting, and really just fun.
I invite people to come listen...... but this is not PG stuff, it is not "school approriate" necessarily (not hosted on our school website for that reason). They were dealing with controversial issues, and like any good library there is something to offend everyone so we aren't really promoting this - but I do have their permission to invite you.
And I thank them for being honest, for allowing me to have a little faith in our students, to open a door for true collaboration with their teachers, to helping me introduce something a little new and different to teachers, to embracing technology - that does work (no tech guy). And I thank them for reminding me that I love words, the rhythm of a spoken poem, the bareness of teens speaking their thoughts without the umms and uhhs, and likes. My favorite by the way is Love/Hate.

And soon I will be posting another promotion - about the arts institute's new book - which they self published through Lulu - which is also a very cool project.
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I don't remember how I came upon this site: Answer Board Librarians at, but I signed up much like I do for others sites like this and then "sat on it" for a while. Takes me some time to get the feel for a site and decide to participate even if I am a member.

This site seems to be mostly participated in by public library staff, but why not have a school library contingent? Check it out and let me know what you think.

Have you seen this? Have you been there? What do you think? Who sends in these questions anyway? I know, the world. I've been a member for a while now, but am just starting to delve into this site and it's usefulness to me and me to it. I am not an answer board librarian. Should I be?

What is it? This is an idea-sharing wiki for librarians who post to answer boards, like's WikiAnswers (, Yahoo Answers or Amazon's Askville. It is kind of like AskColorado only not just library type questions. It seems much, much larger and free. The answer board librarians recognize that this wiki and being an answer board librarian can help promote the idea that librarians are active and dynamic participants in the web 2.0 community, and they're not just waiting for the questions to come in! For that reason alone, we should participate. . .

Go to: Slam the Boards and look for the August original post to find out more about this little opportunity. Where do these folks find the time to do this? Do you do this? Where could we find the time? Even Ask Colorado evening shifts are run by folks all over the world that are hired by a subcontractor.

One thing I recently found out about AskColorado - they have no school librarians answering the online questions currently but most of the calls are from middle school age students. Thank you public librarians for helping our kids.

Sadly I think that school librarians are so overworked, their ability to participate in this larger global culture is extremely limited. What can we do?

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wow cool

its my first blog post. joined the ning to know more about joyce. also was searching for web2.0 and RSS and WIKIs . so the list is immense. a lot to do .bye talk to me any one.
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Using Primary Sources for research

Over the past month, I've had opportunity to attend sessions on using Primary Sources with students in their research. The first session was a part of the ISLMA assoications annual conference. I took part in the all day session at the Abraham Lincoln Presidental Library and Museum. The facilitator, Erin Bishop, is the Director of Education there. She did a wonderful job of showing us what is available for educators through the museum. We also got to spend time at this truly amazing interactive museum. I came away with lots to share with my staff.

Today, and for the next two days, I am involved in training for use of the Library of Congress holdings. Wow! Our instructor, is from DePaul University. They just grazed the surface this morning, touching on visual literacy mostly. I'm very excited about being able to show my teachers what is available to them!

How do you use Primary sources in your schools for research? At what grade levels do you see teachers and students using them?

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