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I was surprised a few months ago by an email from the editor from Ed Tech Magazine inviting me to write a column on the role of school librarians in today's schools. It illustrated for me excatly how inter-connected we have all become. How did he come to ask me for this? A mention in David Warlick's blog following an opportunity to talk with him at dinner, prior to an all-day workshop with teachers in my school district caught his eye. Also present at dinner was the new administrator for our distirct's soon-to-be-launched online high school, and I was attempting to engage him in conversation about the need for a teacher-librarian to be a part of his staff. I am not sure I made much progress in convincing this young adminstrator to add a "cybrarian" to his staff, but perhaps my words can have an impact somewhere! Here is a link to the article. What do you think? Do school librarians have a place in an online school?
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Boy Toy by Barry Lyga

This book is over 400 pages and I couldn't stop reading it- what a super read- very unsettling and compelling. Josh Mendel was 12 when his middle school teacher molested him. I learned that individuals can't always TRULY confront what happens to them even with psychological takes Josh over 5 years to finally come to terms with what happened to he has pushed everyone away and really can't deal with many issues due to the trauma of not understanding sex, love and many other life emotional feelings- highly recommend this!
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Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle ZevinPosted by BJ Neary on June 30, 2008 at 8:52am This is a Reading Olympic book I read (give it 5 stars out of 5!) and now I have to make up 5 questions and the answers with pg # and chapters... I really liked the main character, Naomi,a teen of 16 years who falls while returning to school to get the yearbook camera. Zevin nailed the protagonist's angst, humor, anger and introspective thoughts. You could really feel Naomi's amnesia---loved Will, her best friend ---and James, the darkly handsome, new guy in school who saves Naomi ---and Ace, the jock boyfriend who has it all. Her dad was really quirky and sweet and Naomi's new outlook, "forget the past, who cares?" ---helps their relationship grow. I learned you can make changes, Naomi in the school play...and the resulting future can be a good one.
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Thinking about the research skills that we use as adults has got me thinking (ok, that is a bit circular, but you get the point). What do non-TLs consider to be the research skills they use everyday? Maybe that is how we focus and sell it to our students. I worry that we have a research lingo that the general populace doesn't share (what in the heck is information literacy anyway???)I am going to make it a point to ask regular folks (at the swim pool, during bike rides, at the grocery store) what research skills they employ on a daily or weekly basis, and work from there.Here are some hypotheses:1. keyword and subject searches happen pretty regularly (internet, phonebook)2. summarizing and notetaking (sharing articles and info with friends, summarizing tv shows and conversations, notetaking (even in our heads) about events of the day, prices at the store)3. versions of graphic organizers- where is the cheapest gas and which is closest to my house (does this count?)4. reading for information- how do I put these shelves together? (am I being too self referential here?)anyway...what are your hypotheses...and how do they bear out?
Read more… to get em psyched!

So sometimes I get down about doing research in school with students and teachers. Don't get me wrong, I think it is fun...I think it is valuable...and I think all students should have multiple opportunities to practice research skills. However, teachers don't always share this viewpoint. I know they have a lot on their plate- the WASL, scope and sequence and a myriad of other responsibilities tug and pull on them and their time. I truly believe, though, that we are doing a disservice to students by not providing them multiple opportunities to do research, to practice skills that will definitely help them long term. I also think that by golly, by gosh, if you can write a decent research paper, you will pass the WASL!So, what are some ways to get others to believe like we do? How do we get them to be as passionate about it as us? (ok, that might be unrealistic) How do we get teachers to provide research opportunities for their students?I don't want to be top down, and have the principal require it...but maybe that is an option? Or is top down not the way to "get em psyched?"What are some ways to get em psyched about the value of doing quality research?
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