Sunday, April 18, 2010

Week 14: Not The End but A New Beginning!

This marks the final week in LIS 568 and overall, I have enjoyed the course. I learned some new techniques such as Web 2.0 tools such as Wikis, podcasts, blogs, googledocs and many others but, most importantly the affect they have on a school, students and SLMS in running successful technology in a school library.

I just finished my iSafe certification and having completed that, I am only going to be more cautious about downloading and using communication tools such as chatting and instant messaging as well as social networking sites. Anybody can be a predator because you don't know the person on the other side which all the more reason not to add anybody unless you personally know the person and it is someone you can trust. All of the activities and stories were interesting enough and I believe that before students use these tools, they must be educated on them and learn the risks and precautions that come with them. I look forward to someday setting up an implementation plan and share what I have learned through my school so they can be safe on the internet.

The last discussion topic is on the Saber Tooth Curriculum and how it will impact the School Library Media Center and Specialists. After reading the entire document, the curriculum to me seems more practical because of its focus on doing rather than thinking. It's one thing to have an idea but, the idea is worthless unless action is taken and the idea is brought to life. That is definitely a practice I will apply to when I become a Library Media Specialist.

Lastly, to Sue, Thank you for your guidance, teachings and criticism. I have learned a lot and as you said there is a lot more and I do agree that we should all continue to educate ourselves. I look forward to hoping to see you in the future and share all of the accomplishments.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

LIS 568 Week 13

This week in LIS 568 is all about sharing what we have learned about computer applications in the School Library Media. I have said before that before starting this course, I was a bit frightened because my knowledge of some of the tools were limited and when I heard that I had to use googledocs for one of my projects, I had heard about it but have not used it.

This week we have to submit the last item in our portfolio, our resume. Luckily for me I have already created one and all I have to do is update it. Sue told us to include our ISafe certification due to the percentage of applicants hired having their certification making it a crucial element of our portfolio. I have watched the stream video on resume building given by the University of Buffalo and I have gotten some really good tips for the future for updating my resume such as emphasizing your education and work experience in relation to the job you are applying for.

We were asked in the discussion board that now have learned all of the necessary tools, have we developed our vision of the computer applications portion of being a SLMS. I mentioned that technology changes everyday and it is IMPORTANT that we stay on top and inform students, teahcers, parents and administration of those changes and implement them. Technology is a unique different learning approach and the simplicity, helpful, engaging and most importantly interesting attracting students to learn.

Before this class, my knowledge on Copyright was limited also and thanks to Carol Simpson my knowledge has piqued. Now I have the right amount of knowledge to increase awareness in my library of copyright especially with material taken from the internet. Not everything on the internet is copyright free and if there are royalties included, the proper steps to grant these royalties or clearance for the material are now known.

I have learned so much out of this class and I am now more comfortable with blogs, wikis, podcasts, googledocs etc. Comfortable enough to apply and implement them in my school library. With even more tools out there, I can't wait to search and explore more tools to add to my tool belt.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

LIS 568 Week 12

I am going to start this blog by saying how accomplished I feel for completing my professional development workshop. I am in love with book trailers and what they bring to the library. When I become a SLMS and have my own library, I would definitely be using and creating them for a new way of booktalks.

This week in LIS 568 is all about Creativity, Copyright and Web 2.0. Throughout this course, my knowledge of Web 2.0 has increased and I am amazed how many tools are out there to add to our tool belt. Since tool belts were last weeks topic, this week is all about copyright and the role it plays to SLMS. The big question was should SLMS be responsible for copyright issues whether or not colleagues, students and administration are liable for infringement. I believe that the SLMS role is all about awareness and bringing forth the consequences and penalties that are associated with infringement. When it comes to the actual infringement penalty and enforcing, it falls on the administrator's (Principal) shoulders.

I am in shock how fast this semester went and happy that I am in a course that really sparked my interest and looked forward to every week. I enjoyed both textbooks and will definitely be using them in the future, especially Carol Simpson's Copyright for Schools: A Practical Guide. I know much more about copyright and I am certain that my interest has peaked. More to follow in next week's post.

Monday, March 29, 2010

LIS 568 Week 11

Well, this week is Crunch Time! It is almost the end of the semester and the projects and reports are starting to pile up. This is the final week to work on the Professional Development Workshop and as of right now I do believe that I am in a good place making this the best presentation I have ever done in my entire college career and with this being a Masters course. I have learned so much about book trailers and was fascinated with them so much that I was actually saving some articles on the side of jobs constructing book trailers. Since I do have a production background and the majority of my experience revolves around videos, it seems like a great fit so after this workshop I am going to look into it more in depth.

This week is all about e-books and how they have their place in the library. Sue mentioned that e-books are not a commodity in most libraries and this week's discussion question Sue wants our opinion on that. Personally, I think e-books are the greatest material ever invented due to the implication of technology mixed with reading and research shows that kids prefer to watch movies than read books hence the creation of movies based on books. Also from a reference perspective when I was in school we were restricted to checking out fiction and non fiction books and reference material could not be checked out. E-books allows students to access the same reference book they need for their project and work on it on the go without even stepping foot inside the library.

To conclude this week's blog, I continue to perservere in making my professional development workshop presentation the best it can be and have it in by Sunday 4/4 and I really hope Sue and my fellow colleagues learn something from it and apply it to their careers.

Monday, March 22, 2010

LIS 568 Week 10

This week in LIS 568 was talking about tools to add to our belt and implement them when we go on to great careers as a SLMS. Sue mentioned that there were some that felt that they would not use our social bookmarking site Diigo because all it does is that it lists websites and doesn't provide features to implement the sites and send to others. Sue mentioned in response to that, the reason why Diigo specifically said to add tags to the websites because the tags are what gives suggestions to other websites that relate to that specific topic to add on to the toolbelt and that there is a feature to create folders in Diigo for better organization of sites.

This week Sue introduced us to Google Earth and Primary Access to broaden our tools and see what else is available to share with our students, faculty, parents and administration. I was fascinated how effective google earth was creating the exact location of where you want to go such as The Metropolitan Museum of Art to the Buffalo Science Museum or even the Planetarium without leaving the classroom. Technology has revolutionized everyday tasks and now has created a new spin on taking a field trip right from your classroom.

I have to conclude this blog by saying that the more tools I am introduced to, the more I am going to share with students and colleagues. I did feel a bit ambitious by having the vision of have a "technology library" that would be 100% electronic with no paper materials. After realizing that I would be cutting out a big chunk of multimodal resources out. Hearing about major newspapers possibly eliminating paper copies and making it all electronic tells me that the view is not too ambitious and with the invention of ebooks it makes the dream much more possible and most importantly achievable.

Monday, March 15, 2010

LIS 568 Week 9

After a relaxing week long break, I am ready to get "back to the ol grind" with LIS 568. This week we will be attending an online conference on Professional Development Workshops and what it takes for a successful, interesting and captivating presentation. We must respond on the discussion board 6 times and this time we won't be in our two groups (G and H). Each board will be broken down by each thread presented in the conference and we have to respond to at least 4 classmates to increase sharing of ideas.

I have never been to an online conference and the topics threads that Sue mention sound interesting and exciting. The two that caught my eye immediately were "Week In The Classroom" and "Leading the Change." In comparing the two one was intriguing and interactive and the other was lecture based comprised of useful information to help with construction of my Professional Development Workshop. My favorite one had to be "Week In The Classroom" and the Keynote speaker Rachel Boyd. Boyd constructed a presentation that provided so many visual aspects making it hard to not pay attention. I was initially shocked to find out that her six-year-old students are learning Web 2.0 tools such as googledocs, blogs and wikis to display their work and EVEN critique work of other students across the globe AT SIX YEARS OLD! It's amazing to see how technology implements skills that everyone can take with them whatever they do.

Overall, I had a good time attending the conference and learn about all the different Web 2.0 tools out there implemented in classrooms. Reading comments from my classmates was fun finding out how they reacted to the presentations and I picked up some suggestive tips in constructing my Professional Development Workshop.

Hopefully, by the next time I write in my blog I'll have more information about the progress of the Professional Development Workshop. After hearing advice from professionals and pointers from my classmates, I feel a lot better going into the presentation and striving for nothing but excellence.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

LIS 568 Week 8

This week in LIS 568 the moment has come and our biggest project ever that is essential for our portfolio has finally begun. We have to begin our Professional Development Workshop. Overall by the sound of the project I was a little intimidated and frightened by the whole thing but after listening to Sue's podcast and the podcast by Dave (an expert presenter), I feel a lot better.

Having a communications background will really allow me to shine for this project. For the project we have to use Microsoft Powerpoint to construct our presentation. There are so many elements to powerpoint that can make or break a presentation such as font, colors, animations, content, pictures, clip art and the overall function. I have dealt with so many situations where little things like these have completely ruined the overall performance of my presentation and the professional development workshop is no exception for not being overall the best and professionally done.

I had a balst working with my group for the googledocs paper on "what constitutes a good library website." We equally contributed to a section and communicated frequently to make sure each question was answered the best it can. I am dying to know how we did since we submitted it on Sunday but, now it is time to get back to work and stop anticipating due to how much the Porfessional Development Workshop is worth and since it is a portfolio item, it could be the deciding factor on whether or not I will have a job after I graduate from library school. Hope to see you next week for Week 9.

Monday, February 22, 2010

LIS 568 Week 7

This week in LIS 568, the topic of Collaboration was discussed and how it plays an important role in a successfull School Library. When I first discussed this topic for one of my other classes (LIS 585), I have to admit I was scared. When you are first starting as a Library Media Specialist, none of the faculty and staff will know you. You are fresh out of the boat and in order to collaborate successfully with a fellow faculty member, they have to see what the library is capable of and most importantly how your teaching will impact their assignment. From talking with current SLMS, I was able to get the notion that your first year will have some difficulties but then as the years go on, it will become natural.

This discussion thread asked "Whether or not we should use blogs, wikis and other online tools in our library?" Before starting this class, I knew what a blog was but never wrote one myself, and I had no clue what a wiki was. I thought a wiki at first believe it or not, was a shorter saying of wikipedia. From Sue's class wiki and her exercise every week for us to write our own blog enhances the practice of using these tools and having the confidence and ability to not only use them in our library but, teach how to use them to students.

This week our collaboration google docs paper is due with our groups. I am very excited to work with the girls that I am assigned to and from reading their discussion threads and seeing the sites they posted on diigo, I know that they will bring a lot to the table. I was unfamiliar with google docs until I did my field experience at West Middle and how the SLMS uses google docs to send tasks and awards to her student library aides. Now, I am using google docs a lot and can't wait to see what this assignment will take us on what constitutes an effective, successful library website.

Thank you for reading the Week 7 post and look for more to come in Week 8.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

LIS 568 Week 6

This week is on internet safety and how the internet because of its accessibility brings caution to online writers and publisher such as ourselves. Having a computer and communication background, my knowledge on copyright and liability is strong. It brings back a memory I had when one of my friends asked me to help out with the Student Activities Commitee's presentation of Thank You For Smoking in promotion of drug free week. Because this was being shown in front of a massive crowd with admission charged for fundraising purposes, we had to call Fox Searchlight and find out how we can get the movie cleared to be shown at the school. Fox searchlight in the long run said no and the movie ended up not being shown.

A lot of comments in the discussion board this week reflected how we would handle a copyright infringement act being played at our school. From an awareness standpoint, our role is crucial! It is our job to be proactive to increase awareness to ALL members of the school (students, faculty, administration, staff etc.). From an enforcing standpoint, I am slightly uncomfortable as one of my classmates put it as "saying freeze to someone and accuse them for copyright infringement." I think that is the job of administration since they are at the top of the hierarchy but as SLMS we are still being leaders while increasing awareness and making the situation known to administration.

I did sign up for my I-Safe account and I look forward to doing all there is to get my certification. Sue mentioned that after we have received our certification, we should put it on our resume immediately due to I-Safe being a strong component of our background to attract employers that will hopefully help us get hired for our dream job.

We also found out our groups for the library website and I look forward to working with the girls I am with and no matter what the result is, I will try to give it my best and gain as much experience that I can in constructing a solid, stable, consistent and most importantly effective website. Thank you for reading and I will see you next week to see what else is in store!

Monday, February 8, 2010

LIS 568 Week 5

This week was all about Searching and Communication and how it affects the school library media center. The important tool the library has that provides both searching and communication is the automation system. To those that aren't familiar with automation systems its the program where you can type a multimodal resource (book, video, database etc.) and it will tell you whether or not the library carries it or not.

We were asked in the discussion thread "What will be your ideal library tool? What will it include? How will it impact? I made a visit to West Seneca West Middle and during my field experience almost the entire West Seneca District and they all use Follett Destiny as their automation system. Follet provides the students with Destiny Quest which is appealing to the eye and very direct with searches and keeps track of all the library statistics such as collection management, library transactions and overdue materials. Follet provides it all without having to spend the extra money for another system to do that.

Also from an administration standpoint, Follet does not provide a feature to manage the library budget. Another system has to be purchased in order to fulfill that function. If there was only one automation system that fullfilled all the requirements of a stable library, then extra money would not be spent saving the school tons of money for other resources such as online databases, computers and other multimodal resources that can be available to students.

Automation system were really intriguing and crucial in running a consistent, well functioned, stable library system. I was waiting for a long time for this to be brought up and had quite some fun exploring the different databases from different districts and exploring Follett Destiny a little bit more as well. Until next week, stay posted and keep reading!

Monday, February 1, 2010

LIS 568 Week 4

This week in class we discussed Information Literacy and Information Communication Technology and how to implement it in the School Library Media Center. Sue demonstrated this lesson by giving us a webquest to follow. Before this lesson I was fairly familiar with webquests but haven't done any further research on them. I downloaded the webquest onto my desktop and reviewed it in powerpoint and the setup I thought was going to be confusing and I'd be lost on the first slide but it actually was easy to follow and an interesting tool. One section in particular titled "task" and the task was given as follows; "You are the new teacher-librarian in the school. It is your job to integrate TL/ICT skills into the curriculum. A teacher has asked you to collaborate and help them include IL/ICT into their next lesson. You are using this webquest to learn what you need to know to successfully integrate IL/ICT into the curriculum."

When I saw this task at first, I panicked and looked back to when I took LIS 585 and how much time we spent on talking about collaboration and how it could make or break your career as a SLMS but the webquest provided excellent advice including attending the right meetings. Sue defines the "right meetings" as curriculum team, technology, and curriculum mapping to name three reason being that they are influenced on what the collaboration is taking place and its an opportunity to know how your collaborating teacher sets lesson plans and an opportunity for her to know how you plan.

Also on the webquest, there are two examples given of certain webquests on subject areas including math and science. One webquest I looked at was on Jurassic Park and I was blown away on how interactive it was providing the students an opportunity to be more "hands on" by solving all these scenarios for practice. I have always believed in the saying "practice makes perfect" and that webquest in particular fulfilled that requirement.

After reading the provided materials on IL/ICT, I can honestly say that both topics can imply the same reason why their essential for a SLMS and that reason is change. Teaching children how to judge and review an appropriate online source for their research paper without hackers coming in and being able to use all of the automation systems, online databases and websites appropriately are important to elevate and expand their learning. Not to mention that the webquests can be fun too.

In conclusion, the webquest has to be interactive and be related to the topic taught. Attending the right meetings and also being proactive are essential ingredients for a solid collaboration. I look forward to exploring more in webquests and visiting Bloom's revised taxonomy website to maybe learn how to create my own webquest. Stay in touch for next week for more to share in LIS 568 Computer Applications in the School Library Media.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

LIS 568 Week 3

This week in LIS 568 is all about accessibility and how its essential for the well functioning of a library media center. Various technology including databases, automation systems and the library's website are useful tools that I believe are needed in the library due to the quick, easy, and less hassle approach to accessing information. With online accessibility constantly growing, some journals and magazine publications are utilizing the online accessibility more than print due to the frequent use and convenience of the online publications.

Also, Sue Allen gave us some questions and tips to ask the Library Media Specialist at the school that we decide for our visitation. The school that I have chosen is West Seneca West Senior High due to the praise other SLMS have given her and I am really looking forward to seeing how she manages the library and the automation systems she uses. One of the questions in particular that Sue told us to ask is "Filtering:

  • do they have filtering
  • who controls it
  • how does it affect the SLMC program?"
I have visited a school (school is going to remain nameless) this past semester for field experience where filtering played a big role in resolving this computer issue. Students were playing around the computer and one thing lead to another leaving the entire row of computers' log in screens shaking vigorously. Administration stepped in immediately and handled the situation discretely. Due to this new experience, I am curious to see how filtering is used in other schools.

This week I am almost done with my newsletter on assistive devices with my fictitious school of New Lockwood Valley High School a suburban school just outside the town of Bel Air Maryland. This newsletter is directed to the parents introducing new assistive technology the library has inputted to further enhance disability needs. With these new devices, there is no excuse why every student should be able to read.

I look forward to what lies ahead this week in the discussion boards (youth and technology), diigo accounts and the completion of my newsletter. More to follow on next week's blog.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Week 2 of LIS 568 1/18-1/24

This week in LIS 568 we were asked to view a YouTube video on the ALA State of America's Library Report which the president Loriene Roy and the Executive Director, Keith Michael Fleis explained the importance of the creation of the State of America's Library Report and the impact it has on libraries. What intrigued me the most about this video was Mr. Fleis' examination of gaming in the library. Gaming is a new concept that was introduced recently and continues to grow throughout libraries across America. The involvement, interaction and response customers are giving on this concept is fascinating and I look forward to seeing how far gaming will go in the library.

On the note of gaming, I was exploring the website of thinkfinity ( and the games featured on the site. I got the chance to play three of them (A Touch of Class, Create a Word, and the Factor Game). All three games were interactive, educational and most importantly fun. Every game has a grade level displayed (i.e. K-2, 3-5 etc.) and all of the games are available to both teachers and students to display and play anywhere.

Overall, I spent this week as well growing familiar with the new tools introduced last week such as diigo and google reader. I have added new websites as bookmarks that relate to books, copyright, children and young adult readers that could be beneficial to the class. I hope the class views my diigo page to find these useful sites and use them in the future. The sites include; shelfari, digital booktalk, copyright center and many more. Thanks for reading and hope to see you for next weeks blog.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Week 1 of LIS 568

This course is my second online course that I have taken this year. I took the reference course online and did very well earning myself an A. I have a strong background in computers and technology that I am excited and I anticipate highly of what lies ahead. Honestly, I have never heard of diigo until this course. I am aware of delicious but I have never heard of diigo. Now having an account created, I look forward to exploring and learning more about diigo and what it can do to increase my knowledge on library science technology. I look forward to learning new concepts, sharing my thoughts and knowledge and most importantly, try to have fun with it even though it is work.