27 November 2007

Leading Learning Through the School Library

Ross Todd presented this full day seminar, Leading learning through the school library: Part 11: Transforming information into deep knowledge and did not disappoint. Syba Signs has done a great job of facilitating leading edge events over the last year. Long may they continue.

For the full story go to CISSL where you can link through to Guided Inquiry, and get details of Carol Kuhlthau's new book. But here are a few of the thoughts from the day that stayed with me. Apologies if I am miss quoting Ross here, but there are some lines that I know I can't have got wrong as he repeated them so often:

Have a vision for your library. What can you see? Practice stems from vision.

Position yourself in the knowledge commons.

Do not be accomplices to mediocrity.

Engage with disciplinary knowledge.

Do not water rocks.

At the end of the day Teacher Librarian Lee Fitzgerald of Loreto Kirribilli gave an excellent overview of Guided Inquiry as practiced in her school this year. Practice is the proof of the pudding and the place to really learn about this process for us all. For a taste of this see the article Guided Inquiry the KISS Way in aisNSW Teacher librarian Newsletter, Term 4, 2007

Finally, those promised pics.

Standards for the 21st Century Learner

Ross Todd referred to this document at last week's Syba Signs Seminar Leading Learning Through the School Library Part II. Launched last month by the American Association of School Librarians, Standards for the 21st Century Learner starts with nine common beliefs:
  • Reading is a window to the world.
  • Inquiry provides a framework for learning.
  • Ethical behavior in the use of information must be taught.
  • Technology skills are crucial for future employment needs.
  • Equitable access is a key component for education.
  • The definition of information literacy has become more complex as resources and technologies have changed.
  • The continuing expansion of information demands that all individuals acquire the thinking skills that will enable them to learn on their own.
  • Learning has a social context.
  • School libraries are essential to the development of learning skills.

You can download an eight page colour version of the Standards (link above). Well worth reading.

And whilst looking for a link to Ross I came across this fabulous School Library Journal cover and article: Ross to the Rescue! about the quest to renew school libraries. It is by SLJ's Editor in Chief Brian Kenney from April, 2006.

19 November 2007

Life After powerpoint – 50 Ways

Participate in the free K12 Online Conference

If you are weary of seeing student tasks presented in PowerPoint then I am with you. This is not to say that kids aren't pretty good at using the software. I have seen lots of student engagement working on PPT presentations, plenty of scope for peer learning and real experience of design principles - usually implicit. But there are plenty of other fun ways of presenting in our Web 2.0 world and Alan Levine has tried 50 of them.

Linked to another K12Online07 presentation, Alan has had a go at telling the same story in 50 different ways and the result, Dominoe 50 Ways, is a ready made menu for you to sample. If you prefer to start another way you could go a classified list of names and descriptions of the Story Tools. This also has a few examples of each. For a more guided narrative experience take yourself (and maybe a friend) through Alan's workshop 50 Web 2.0 Ways to Tell a Story.

Now, all tools are not created equal, but part of the learning is about finding the right one for your purpose. Explore and enjoy, and try letting some kids lose with this list. Below is my own first attempt at using Animoto:

16 November 2007

This blog's reading level is...

cash advance

Now this may rank with those surveys you do in magazines that you claim not to buy, or it might be based on an authentic readability formula, but it is lots of fun regardless. And particularly because this blog is apparently awesome ...or just very difficult to read.

Find it here. It also works on Livejournal, Facebook, Myspace profiles and most websites, apparently. I saw it at bookboy, which is a nice blog to follow.

12 November 2007

Voices around the world

Sometimes it is interesting to know how we find stuff.
Judy posted in HeyJude about an mp3 creator and mentioned the sound was better in Voki. So I checked out Voki. There, in the bottom right corner was the image below, referring to the September task. Well I just HAD to go there, didn't I! And then I found the other tasks. So, thank you Judy!

Voices around the world is a class project from students at Dundee High School in Scotland. Each month they set a different project, using different Web 2.0 appplications. I loved the national anthems last month, and the month before they used Voki to record messages to hear each other's languages.
Have a look - It brought a smile to my face and although it is a HS project, the contributors are from Grade 1 up.
This time they are using Onetruemedia to create a slideshow.

Have fun! Let us know if you contribute.

Jan, who will be back at Delany next Monday!