MICDS – Reinventing the Media Centre

Today I presented at MICDS, St. Louis. It was a half day session for Teacher Librarians about how we can reinvent the Media Centre (what we’d call the Library in Australia). The outline for the session was this;

Working as a Teacher-Librarian has always had its challenges, but today, maybe more that ever, there is a need to respond to the changing nature of the world we are living in. Communication mediums have changed; this represents opportunities for Teacher-Librarians to rethink their role in their school and rethink the traditional library, both the space and delivery of information.

Resources supporting the session are embedded in pages on my Wiki. There are five pages there that you are welcome to explore;

How do you become a change agent in your school?

How can we deliver information using new tools?

What is the future of books in a digital age?

Library Spaces -how are they changing?

Forming a Personal Learning Network for Professional Learning.

There was a lot of lively discussion amongst the participants; some agreement, some disagreement. All healthy discourse as we try to grapple with the changing nature of the job and what being a Teacher-librarian looks like today. I’ve tried to include plenty of links and embedded content so that you can read and ponder for yourself some of the issues and discussion around the topics.

Elizabeth Helfant and Patrick Woessner have been wonderful hosts at MICDS. Tonight, Elizabeth accompanied myself, Dean Groom and Andrew Churches into the city centre of St. Louis. Andrew and I took the funny little bubble elevator up to the top of the famous St. Louis Gateway Arch and took in a wonderful view.

My body clock still hasn’t adjusted to time over here. I keep waking up at 3.00am and toss and turn until I finally give up and just get up! Hoping to sleep well tonight and get ready to fly out of St. Louis tomorrow headed for Denver and the ISTE Conference.

Thanks once again to Elizabeth for being such an obliging host and inviting me to present at the MICDS Summer Teacher Institute. I’ve enjoyed seeing your beautiful school and having the opportunity to share some thinking with you, Patrick, Amy, Al, Dean and Andrew.

Onto Denver!

Don’t reinvent the wheel

I’m a firm believer in not reinventing the wheel. I’ve been in plenty of staffrooms where people covet their lesson plans and refuse to share. I’ve never done that. In the days of hard copy, I’d photocopy a worksheet and lay it on the desks of teachers who taught the same subject. I just can’t see the point of not sharing and making the load easier for others. I know I always appreciate it when other teachers share their ideas, but it’s a sad fact of life that it doesn’t always happen.

Andrew Churches has a wonderful wiki called Educational Origami where he shares many of the resources he has created. Today I was reading his blog and discovered posts he had written about starter sheets he has created about a variety of Web 2.0 apps.  They are available to download as a PDF and I’m assuming he is fine to have people use them in their schools. I couldn’t find a creative commons licence on them so I’m a bit unclear about this. (Hopefully he’ll read this post and provide some clarification in a comment).

Starter Sheets are available for Delicious, Voicethread, Google Maps, Wikispaces and Google Advanced Search. The advanced search has an extension sheet explaining Boolean Searches. They are attractively presented and link to the Bloom’s Digital Taxonomy that he created. If you haven’t seen that yet you must. It’s invaluable for curriculum planning with the integration of technology in mind.

external image voicethread-page2-212x300.jpg

So, don’t go reinventing the wheel. Access this fabulous wiki and download the PDFs. I can see them looking just great laminated and used as resources for staff and students alike. Thanks Andrew.

* Update.   Andrew Churches responded in a comment;

Teaching is about sharing and collaboration, it’s not a competition. Please feel free to use the resources and materials on the wiki. Everything published on the wiki is under the creative commons licence.

If you have any suggestions, recommendations or perhaps more importantly corrections let me know I appreciate the feedback.

I love this line. “Teaching is about sharing and collaboration, it’s not a competition.”

It sure is.





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