11 Replies Latest reply: Feb 11, 2011 3:08 PM by smccaslin123 RSS

Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?

smccaslin123 New User
Currently Being Moderated

Welcome! Thank you for visiting this group. Hopefully you will stay a bit and share some of your wonderful ideas.

Hey, my first group! And just the other day I created my first blog! I am so excited about reaching out.

My current professional situation is both an honor and a challenge. Our district library program was cut last year. I was one of those librarians, and was hired to

vision a program that will bring educational technology and information literacy into our schools. And out of the ashes...

The words that have come up to describe this possible new role are: educational technology coach or advocate, information literacy specialist, teacher-coach, etc.

Back to you - enough about me. I welcome your insights, ideas, questions, or your fully-developed educational tech / information literacy programs plus scope and sequences for 21st century learners. Hey, it doesn't hurt to put it out there.

Let's share! - With the suggestion at the outset that we set aside our fears. I know many librarians who have been hurt or dishonored by the changes we face. What I am asking is that we agree that getting stuck in the cycle of negativity will not help us or the students we hope to engage. I hope that doesn't offend. Just want to set the climate for creative and open-minded sharing.

Thanks!

  • Re: Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
    Jane Brown Master
    Currently Being Moderated

    What is the library of the future going to look like? Will it be a repository of information in print and digital form that students seek out and absorb?

     

    Will it be a place where information is created, using 21st Century online tools, such as Wikis, blogs, discussions and other social media?

     

    How do you see the library of the future?

    • Re: Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
      smccaslin123 New User
      Currently Being Moderated

      A place? I believe that the actual facility needs to remain an exciting book filled resource, where students of all ages can come and search for literature, information, entertainment in books and media. But, we need to bring down the walls. As information professionals, we may need to let go of the program model that has been so wonderful for so long, but now is a rather limiting role.

      Maybe we need to let the library be the library, but the librarian needs to expand beyond the familiar role. The role now is more a response to the information needs of students when they are engaged in meaningful units of study. Maybe not so much a place as an instructional model of information literacy, empowered learning.  Leadership.

       

      Can we do all this? Can we move past our comfort level, to embrace what is needed now? I feel kind of like a hermit crab that has outgrown it's shell. That in between, vulnerable place. Can we get through this together?

       

      I wonder...can we have it all?

    • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
      wbutler@pusd.us New User
      Currently Being Moderated

      Gazing into the crystal ball ... I'm not sure we can say exactly what the library will look like.  But I do feel that there has been a misunderstanding what the library's purpose has been at schools, or what it ought to have been at its core.  Even now, I have sat in meetings where the focus has been solely on books... fiction books. Is that all the library and librarian is about?  Even with talks about a digital library... eBooks seem to still be at the focus.  Kindles and Nooks as ways to have access to more titles.  Is this revolutionary for a library?

       

      I think schools need to embrace what is at the library's core... access to information.  How do we access information?  Where do we find information?  What is "information"?  There might be more problems and complications as we navigate resources in the digital world and the "anarchy" of the internet, but at the root... libraries have always been there to guide its community members to resources that will support their needs.   This is the unique role of the library in its school.  In addition, it ought to be the information hub of the school.  It ought to be shaped so that the library has its finger on the pulse of activity at the school to serve as the information hub. The resources themselves may change their faces, but the library's mission and purpose will still be the same at the core.  And I strongly feel there is nothing else at a school or within a community that can replace or supplement that role.  

  • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
    wbutler@pusd.us New User
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    Thank you for initiating this group!  I hope many others find us.  I am a new librarian at my district, and we are in the middle of pushing a literacy initiative at all the campuses in the district centered around the libraries.  At my campus I am creating a two-front attack by collaborating with the english teachers with their efforts in the Accelerated Reader program, and then the second approach is to establish an information literacy curriculum that will apply across the curriculum and grade levels.   

     

     

    The school I am with is grades 6 - 12.  So, my focus with information literacy is going to start with the 12th grade, since I feel that they desperately need an understanding of the skills embedded in information literacy in order to better adjust to post-high school life... whether that's at a university, vocational school, or going immediately into a career, I can't imagine them being as successful without some guidance first.  However, I am just at the beginnings of developing this curriculum... I hope to have a more solid picture of it before the beginning of the second semester.  I am planning on using TRAILS, an online assessment for information literacy developed by Kent University to assist in targeting areas that the students may need extra assistance with, but I feel that the assessment really concentrates on a few key skills, instead of a broad, rich understanding of information literacy.  So, developing a curriculum that will support and go beyond TRAILS to tie in with State standards and ALA's Standards for the 21st Century Learner is going to be the trick. (not to mention creating activities to correspond with established curriculum and teachers' own projects, plans, etc.)

     

    But I'm very exicited about the prospect of creating this, and sharing with others the successes and trip-ups that will come down the road with it as well.  I'm also looking forward to hearing about yours and others experiences as we grapple with re-defining the role of the library at our schools/districts.

    • Re: Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
      smccaslin123 New User
      Currently Being Moderated

      Congratulations - What state are you from? I like your two pronged approach.

      I just got goose bumps - I am so excited to have reached out, but even more so to have you respond. OK - this is going to be fun. One of the things I think will happen is that each of us may assume that we all speak the same language, are aware of common resources, etc. But, the reality is we don't. This is a very new place, and the fantastic reality of it is that we all have different foundations we are growing from.

      I don't know TRAILS, but have been using the new program guide developed by AASL and Britannica based on ALA's Stds for 21st Learner, Empowered learners. This collaboration is good, a working assessment, but the tech support stinks. I am discouraged with it, but want it to work, so will hang in there.

      Do you use the Big 6 structure for problem solving/inquiry based learning? There are many out there, but this one speaks to me.

      I will look at the Kent University stuff.

      Hope to hear more.

      • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
        wbutler@pusd.us New User
        Currently Being Moderated

        I am in California. And because I am still relatively new to the school, I am uncertain if any of the teachers utilize The Big 6 at the school.  After speaking with a few parents, it seems unlikely (as they have not heard of it being used).  I think Big 6 has a simple enough structure to make it workable in any information literacy structure. 

        • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
          smccaslin123 New User
          Currently Being Moderated

          http://www.big6.com/kids/7-12.htm

           

          I just wrote a long reply to your message, then somehow lost it. Will try again later. The above site is Big 6 info.

          Thanks for talking about this with me. It really helps!

          • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
            cc_powell New User
            Currently Being Moderated

            I am not a media/library person. I am a technology coach. I was interested in your topic since my office is in the library of a middle school.

            I like Walter's thoughts in his post marked helpful answer. I think information is why people visit libraries: new books, research, new skills, and many more.

            In SC we have a technology assessment which all teachers and students are being asked to take. Mastery levels are grade level specific. It is copyrighted by the state so I can't really share. We use ISTE/NETS standards as the underlying framework.

            My job is to add to the possibilities and skills that teachers have to use in planning their lessons. Thinkfinity is one of the tools our state asks us to pass on. The partners here are hard to beat, and they keep adding to them!

             

            Enough of that...the Big 6 link seems only to be a word press blog...? Is there another way in and more to it than that?

            • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
              smccaslin123 New User
              Currently Being Moderated

              Thanks for your input. First: The Big 6 site should be:  http://www.big6.com/  I find the site visually difficult - but the info and resources are endless. Eisenberg has taken this strategy and evolved (sp?) it as time has passed. Now it has become far more technology infused. Which is great.

               

              I would absolutely love to see the assessment that you mentioned, that has mastery levels for grades.

               

              I also agree with Walter regarding information being the driving force. I believe that inquiry based learning is essential, yet undeveloped in education at this point. We are at a cusp, a transition, a shift - and those times are uncomfortable, at best. We continue to try to use proven modalities that have served us in the past. Seems like round hole into square peg. Professional development in the form of in-services hasn't worked for many reasons. And now we face financial chaos. Personally, I think these transition times are when magic can happen, when change is creatively handled so we can move forward into the 21st century learning and teaching reality.

               

              I am so envious of your job. It sounds exactly like the model I am trying to develop for our district.

              Hope to hear from you soon - grade level assessments???

  • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
    tgibbon Novice
    Currently Being Moderated

    I just want to say I love the hope and inspiration running through this thread.  I wish we could bottle it up for me to distribute at my trainings.

     

    T

    • Can we collaborate on a vision for future learning - libraries?
      smccaslin123 New User
      Currently Being Moderated

      Really, we are all the vessels. What is challenging is remembering that non-reactive optimism when confronted with people who feel over-burdened and exhausted, who are spiraling into that black hole.

      It's a balancing practice for me: to honor their reality, without buying into it. To model a different vision, without alienating yourself or being judged as naive.

      Hey, nobody said that change of this magnitude would be graceful or easy.

      But, it sure feels great to have others sharing the possibilities! Thanks for your part in this.

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