29 August 2006

Reading Cafe Launched by Sue

Susan H has been working hard at her College! Here's her report.

Reading Cafe launched.

Each fortnight our Library becomes a hive of reading activity as students from years 7-10 share book titles, reading experiences, read, eat their lunch & have a drink & sweet treat provided by the library.

The gains in literacy, confidence and having a good time are already evident within most English classes & certainly in fiction borrowing in the library generally.

The CEO Literacy Book Week Grant 2006 will certainly further add to our fiction collection, as most members of the Reading Cafe have provided wish lists of book titles.

We also hope to be able to get visiting Authors such as Catherine Jinks, Stephen Herrick and Morris Gleitzman to speak to the students at lunch.

Booksellers such as Bloomin' Books Kate and Jenny from Megalong Books at Leura are coming to speak to the students.

Short book reviews are going to be published from the Cafe on the school intranet.

The photos show the students catching a bit of the reading pleasure, even an artistic Year 12 student has got involved by designing Thelma, our Reading Cafe Mascot.

Online guide to "primary sources"

You might like to consider this on-line guide to primary sources (materials from or directly related to the past).

It is free for libraries, schools and educators world wide and links to more than 100,000 sources at national archives, libraries, universities and government web sites.

It has an alphabetical subject index
http://www.awesomestories.com/fast_find/index.shtml of more than 325 pages, including listings of video clips,

You just have to request a free membership using this form.

Internet and Information Skills

This year we have had two professional development days for Parramatta Diocese teachers and teacher librarians, presented by James Herring of Charles Sturt University on the topic Enabling Curriculum through Information Literacy and ICT.

Here is some information about James own book:
The Internet and Information Skills: A guide for teachers and school librarians

As a result of recent developments in teaching and learning, teachers and educators are being encouraged through their training to use ICT to develop more innovative teaching methods, and students are frequently required to use electronic information resources as part of their assignments.

Networked internet access is now the norm in both primary and secondary schools, and is available not only in the school library but in computer suites and classrooms. Increasingly both teachers and school librarians recognize that information literacy is a key skill needed by today's pupils, who are tomorrow's workers in the knowledge economy. Thus the need for students to become effective information users is paramount.

This new book provides teachers and school librarians with the ability to exploit the internet effectively both as a learning and a teaching resource; in particular to improve their skills in accessing the most relevant parts of the internet to improve their teaching and provide suitable information sources to aid students' learning. It offers valuable insights into information literacy skills and provides help with, and examples of, the most effective ways of teaching information skills to students.

Available at the CEO Library. Contact Erika or Lisa on 9840 5737 or 9840 5735 to borrow a copy.

22 August 2006

Queensland's Online Literature Festival will run on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday for three weeks, August 28 - September 14, 2006.

Many Australian children's authors and illustrators will be available to chat online with students.
Authors include RL Stine (Goosebumps Series), James Moloney, Nick Earls, David J Smith (overseas author)...with more authors to be advertised shortly.....

Registration is now open!!!

Please note: They now have a waiting list facility, if a session is full. Put yourself on the waiting list, in case a school cancels. If a chat is found to be popular (waiting lists have more than three schools on) then they may be able to contact the authors to offer extra sessions, to those on the waiting list.

21 August 2006

Learning at the British Library

The British Library's new Learning website is devoted to promoting the wonders of the book, and to opening up the mysterious and magical qualities of the Library's collection.

Virtual visitors can browse a treasure trove of fascinating texts and images: from medieval banquet menus to ancient Iranian myths, from 18th century ship's logs to Russian Constructivist book covers, from Victorian freak show posters to WWII maps.

There are over a thousand texts on the site, as well as wonderful audio recordings from the Sound archive, and a range of multimedia elements. The site is divided into six themed sections, making navigation easy and enjoyable. In launching the new website, the Learning team aims to bring the British Library's world renowned collection to a wider audience, and to inspire learners of all ages. The material provides myriad opportunities for personalised learning, individual research projects and classroom activity

Peter Scott's Library Blog

14 August 2006

Plagiarism Seminar

This seminar is intended for teachers and teacher librarians who wish to develop further understanding of the issues in preparation for the NSW Board of Studies Program HSC - All My Own Work.

The Keynote session will be presented by Dr Joy McGregor from Charles Sturt University, whose research into 'plagiarism' makes a significant contribution to our overall understanding.
The program includes the following topics and speakers in this order:
  • Working with others (Judy O'Connell, CEO)
  • Acknowledging sources (Di Laycock, Barker)
  • Scholarship principles and practices (Colleen Foley, DET)
  • Copyright (Debbie Leatham, Kings School)
  • Plagiarism (June Wall, Riverview).
Organised by the Australian School Library Association. Flyer and registration form is available here.

13 August 2006


Thanks to Halina Levenets, Teacher Librarian at St Bernadette's School for finding and sharing this blog with us.

This blog is for school children to celebrate literature in 2006 in a different manner. We will look at a number of titles that have been shortlisted by the Children's Book Council of Australia, and the children will record their thoughts on the books we share.

Perhaps some of your students would like to add some comments to this blog?

10 August 2006

Learning Technology Forum

Wednesday and Thursday this week saw Learning Technology teachers from primary and secondary schools in the Parramatta Diocese gather for a two-day forum.

The presentations from this forum will be made available via podcast - and I hope provide the links for you when they are available .

The forum was opened by Kevin Jones, and as Head of Curriculum he was able to provide some clear insights to 'set the scene'.

Kevin focussed on the beliefs that underpin/enable/epitomise 21st century learning, and the approaches that will enable (if not ensure) quality 21st century learning. Some of the key points were about the beliefs that must drive our understanding and the staffroom approaches that help us be more effective.

The Beliefs
Learning in the 21st century is about

  • student “centredness”.
  • Student ownership
  • Student choices
  • Student responsibility

The Approach
Collaborative work practices (staffroom approaches) will help us meet the learning needs of our students.

These practices must include use of technology that enhances collaborative work practices for:

  • Programming Organisation of assessment
  • Marking to standards
  • Evaluation
  • Cross-curricular approaches

As Kevin explained, "Our approaches and practices have to reflect our beliefs about individualised learning". "We need to think about our own approach" "We need to think about what our current practices indicate about our beliefs about learning".

Then we will engage more effectively in how to use the tools.

I followed with a presentation on Engaging the google generation through Web 2.0. For this session I drew from the article of the same title published in SCAN, Vol 25 No 3 August 2006.

09 August 2006

International School Library Day

The International School Library Day committee invites you to
consider participating in activities to celebrate this globlal celebration of school

Visit the International School Library Day 2006 webpage here.

Time is running out to sign up for the Bookmark Project. This is a worldwide project involving students creating a bookmark which will be sent to another school on or before October 23. Deadline for matching will be September 8. After that day, no further schools will be matched. Sign up now. More information is available here.

Don't forget to share what you are planning for International School Library Day with others. You can submit your ideas at here. Your submissions will be available for others to view soon!

Don't wait, share your ideas now.

Rick Mulholland
Teacher-librarian (Surrey, BC, Canada)
International School Library Day Coordinator (IASL)

07 August 2006

Enabling Curriculum - Learning at Emmaus

Today we have a group of teachers and teacher librarians gathered for the day to work with James Herring on Information Literacy and ICT.

Participants have brought a range of experiences and expertise to contribute to the discussions today. I am blogging this event during the first session after lunch - Advanced searching and search engine design.

Participants are exploring advanced searching techniques in Google after discussion of options and possibilities when searching the web for learning materials. Try using Google to do a domain search of the BBC site. Google provides a powerful search tool to use for site searches. Don't forget, it is possible to search for specific file formats such as word or powerpoint.

Try this in the Advanced search:

Type in year 7 discovering democracy. Now go to the Domain box and type in det.nsw.edu.au (note that you don't need www). Now click Google Search. You will see year 7 discovering democracy site:det.nsw.edu.au so Google is searching for your information only in that site and nowhere else. This demonstrates the way that complex sites can be searched using the power of Google.

James explains that Google is now the most popular and most used search engine across the world, but we shold not always restrict our searches to Google, even using advanced searching. After exploring Google, participants then worked with a range of other metasearch engines, learning about the variations, and discovering the particular features of visual search engines such as Kartoo , a visual meta search engine. Participants also explored Clusty and Mooter.

Developing advanced searching techniques and understanding the myriad of ways to search for information is a vital part of our skillset. We need to share this information with our teachers and each other.

Thank you to Sharon and Emmaus staff for hosting a lovely day!

04 August 2006

Educaton au Seminar - changes in learning

Friday 4 August I am attending a seminar hosted by Educationau. I was spotted when I arrived looking for a powerpoint for my tablet PC, so that I could blog the event. I was provided with a 3M wireless card for computer, and away I went.

The whole seminar is interactive and being published in various ways on the web.

The ideas are not new. But for the group that we have here today it is a strong opportunity to share and discuss, and after listening to key speakers take time to reflect on the directions we are going with our Web 2.0 technologies.

Collect the podcasts here.

Go to Technoratic and search the tag "eduaueventaug06" to see what is written.

Go to these blogs...
Learning with the Fang
Al Upton and the miniLegends

RSS blog is available here.

02 August 2006

IFLA Section - School Libraries and Media Centers

From the School Libraries section of the International Federation of Library Associations:

The IFLA Section School Libraries and Media Centers recently added a school library advocacy kit to its webpages. You can find the document here: http://www.ifla.org/VII/s11/pubs/s11_AdvocacyKit.html

In the document you will find links to resources you can use to promote school libraries with you
institution, association, or (educational) authorities. The advocacy kit supports the Ifla/Unesco School Library Manifesto and the Ifla/Unesco School Library Guidelines. This document is only a start.

Take a little time to read through the site, and in particular take note of International Research Links and other important statements.

The Alexandria Proclamation on Information Literacy may be accessed here.