Friday, October 3, 2008

OCTOBER is School Library Month

Very busy week ... but blog is done just before midnight!

Thanks to David and the Grenfell crew for the great "Let's do Lunch" session today. We ate sushi and reviewed the bevy of wonderful electronic resources that are much more readily available now that some schools have BCeSIS! Being able to work with an entire staff in this way was a real opportunity to promote teacher-librarianship as well as resources. In preparing for this workshop, I took my direction from Mary, Lorraine, Wendy, Linda ... and then phoned Sylvia at the last minute when the technology failed us. In case you didn't know, I can't believe how extremely fortunate I am to work with Vancouver TLs!

Also had a great day at the Surrey SFU campus this week where ERAC resources were the subject. Photos in the next blog ... Heather Daly from Coquitlam, our BCTLA president, and I took a quick lunch-time tour of the library of our dreams. And I wondered how many classes I would have attended at SFU Burnaby campus if the shopping mall had been two floors down by escalator. Quite the place.

One other highlight of the week was the Ministry webcast after school at Thompson. The focus on the topic of assessment for learning is both interesting and important to both teachers and teacher-librarians. The next webcast is scheduled for January.

This weekend will find me pushing to submit my summary of the IASL conference for publication in the upcoming issue of The Bookmark. I am re-writing the back-blog for publication.

Let's Celebrate in October!

There are lots of Pro D opportunities this month: check the Pro D Connections. Consider Accounting for TLs, eLibrary and Culturegrams (this week), or TL Studio. Refer TOCs to the 2-part Horizon/School Library training.

DEAR: Val H's blog offers all the materials and ideas you need to promote Drop Everything and Read on October 27 in your school. Thanks, Val.

Also, resources from the IASL for International School Library Month are available at School Libraries Online. Great posters and bookmarks, for example, and lots of ideas: As part of the celebration of International School Library Month 2008, you or your association can become members of the IASL. Why not celebrate school libraries by becoming part of a worldwide organization. Information regarding membership can be found on the IASL website (but I recommend you send a request to post-date your membership to January as presently memberships run for the calendar year).

From Rick Mulholland, a former BC teacher-librarian and currently Coordinator of the celebration for the IASL:

The ISLM (International School Library Month) committee is experimenting with ways to reach school library personnel. One way of doing this is to add another way for school library personnel to share ideas, links etc on school library celebrations in preparation for International School Library Month, the committee has started a blog. It can be accessed [here] .... As the subtitle says this is “A place for school library personnel to discuss International School Library Month. This blog is intended as a supplement to the main ISLM page.” Please contribute to this blog. Cheers, Rick.

Upcoming Events:

BCTLA PSA Conference: Mission Literacy: Teacher-librarians / Not-so-secret agents of change -- there's easy online registration and also a blog for information about the location, workshops, and related links.

Sarah Guilmant-Smith, Teacher-Librarian Helping Teacher & Curriculum Support in Surrey, has asked me to share this upcoming event with you:

Mike Eisenberg, of the "Big 6" information literacy program, is coming to Surrey's Focus Day for a day-long session on November 21, 2008. Details about registration can be accessed here at the Surrey website.

More Resources:

For great social studies links, click onto links on the BC Social Studies Teachers' Association Website .

From Linda Hof's Webbits a website to complement goals for sustainability:

Gapminder -- In London, riders on the Tube are reminded to "Mind the Gap". On this website, you are reminded to mind a variety of gaps, whether they be in income inequality or quality of health care. This website was created to promote "sustainable global development and achievement of the UN Millennium Development Goals by increased use and understanding of statistics and other information." The site offers visualizations for questions like"Which country has the best teeth in the world?" and "Who gets what: Farm subsidies." Find such information under the "Latest News" area, and also check the videos, "Gapcasts," and world charts, or use your own own set of statistical indicators to create your own Gapminder-like bubble graph. It's a powerful tool. (Internet Scout Project 1994-2006)

From Alan Zisman:
Cyberbullying: new phenomenon or the playground gone online? By (John Timmer)

A study of Internet using teens reveals that much of the cyberbullying they experience differs from their real-world experiences only in terms of the medium. To paraphrase von Clausewitz, cyberbullying may just be childhood by other means. "The authors feel strongly that the fact that real-world bullying strongly predicts cyberbullying and the parallels in behavior both suggest that cyberbullying may not actually be a distinct phenomenon .... These findings further underscore the continuity between adolescents' social worlds in school and online."

Also there's a new edition of the VSB publication "Responding to Cyberbullying" from Learning Services; your administrator probably received a copy. This might be an item for circulating from the school's Professional Collection.

In the News:

Books for the Elementary collections from Steve Mulligan will be arriving soon. In case you didn't see it, I am including the article this week on our now-retired colleague Susan Harman. It perfectly underscores the need for the continuing work of our Diversity/Anti-homophobia consultant extraordinaire. Has he brought lunch to your school yet? Thanks, Steve, on behalf of the elementary school library programs:

A mother’s plea to keep her gay son from harm
The Vancouver Sun page B1
02 Oct 2008

Here we are today, 40 years after the Stonewall riots, 35 years after the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from its official list of mental disorders, 30 years after Denmark became the first government to recognize civil more...

Tech Tags:


Globe & Mail (2008 August 20) Arts Funding Cut

The Tories are committed to cutting $44.8-million in spending on arts and culture by April of 2010, The Globe and Mail has learned. As criticism of recent cuts continues, ... details of several new cutbacks are emerging ....The most expensive of five new cuts approved in February was the $11.7-million Canadian Memory Fund, which gives federal agencies money to digitize collections and mount them online. Also chopped were the $3.8-million Web portal; the $560,000 Canadian Cultural Observatory; the $5.64-million research and development component of Canadian Culture Online; and the $2.1-million Northern Distribution Program, which distributes the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network signal to 96 Northern communities.

Funding to the Book Publishing Industry Development Program and the Canada Magazine Fund will also drop by $1-million and $500,000 respectively. July brought another round of cuts, a Heritage Department spokesman said, which included the previously reported $300,000 Audio-Visual Trust, the $1.5-million Canadian Independent Film and Video Fund, the $2.5-million National Training Program for the Film and Video Sector and the $7.13-million Trade Routes, in addition to cuts and reductions totalling $3.4-million to the Stabilization Project and Capacity Building elements of the Canadian Arts and Heritage Sustainability Program.

In August, you might have heard the outcry in response to cuts to Arts funding. Have you read any Atwood lately? Here's a little not-so-light reading. Margaret Atwood's recent volley in response to Stephen Harper's cuts to the Arts has set of a firestorm of response. Here's the link to her article in The Globe and Mail (Sept 24, 20008) for your consideration. In our role as stewards of Canadian culture, there is surely cause for us to be concerned.

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