Engaging in this subject has reinforced the significance of my role within the dynamic of the whole school context. As a TL I have the unique position of seeing every child in the school each week and wholeheartedly believe that as an effective TL, as a mainstay I have the opportunity to guide authentic learning, instil a love of literacy in all learners, and share information and knowledge with all students to help them understand the value of being literate and knowing the true affordances of reading and where it can take them.

As curriculum leaders, TLs are responsible for promoting the importance of students acquiring information skills via resource-based learning. They are actively engaged in planning and teaching collaboratively with classroom teachers to ensure the functional integration of information resources and technologies into student literacy learning. Above all, it is the TLs responsibility to maintain literacy as a high priority by engaging students in reading, viewing and listening to multimodal texts for learning and leisure (ASLA, 2014).

When TLs are at the forefront of literacy learning, they are able to take students on an intellectual and emotional journey, guide them to their own understandings, and encourage creative authentic responses to narrative because reading can change your life. “Reading unlocks worlds unknown or forgotten, taking travellers around the world and through time. Reading helps you escape the confines of school and pursue your own education. Through characters – the saints and sinners, real or imagined – reading shows you how to be a better human being” (Miller, 2009, p. 29).

Each week in the library I display books based on a theme. There are always picture books there (especially because I start my week with the Kindergarten classes), however throughout the week all grades (including Year 6) always want me to read the latest Aaron Blabey, Mo Williams, Pamela Allen, Leila Rudge, Katrina Germein or whatever I have on display. I’d like to think that because of this, they have become more diverse and discerning with their critical-eye by demonstrating their willingness to listen to any new book in the collection.

The literary discussions that ensue are filled with student insights, observations, and questions. They may be related to the characters, setting, plot, and author, along with connections to student experiences. These discussions engage students in higher-level thinking and reflection by encouraging collaboration and constructing meaning with other readers (Lamb, 2007).

Gaining a deeper understanding of the connectedness between reader and viewer that picture books can afford literacy learning has been just one of the highlights of this course. Confirming that when students are listening to and viewing a story, or participating in discussion, they are engaging in meaningful, authentic learning. As a TL, choosing appropriate texts for reading aloud is considered an imperative activity for enabling students to build knowledge and make connections to the world around them.

I will continue to choose books that are well written, books with engaging characters and plots, and books that afford many opportunities to model fluent and expressive reading. Including an assortment of text genres, formats and modes to ensure students are exposed to a wide-variety of literature learning (Lane & Wright, 2007).



Australian School Library Association (ASLA). (2014). What is a teacher librarian?. Retrieved from

Lamb, A. (2007). Theory to practice: Literature circles. In Literature Learning Ladders. Retrieved from

Lane, H. B., & Wright, T. L. (2007). Maximizing the effectiveness of reading aloud. The Reading Teacher, 60(7), 668-675.

Miller, D. (2009). The book whisperer: Awakening the inner reader in every child. Chichester, United Kingdom: John Wiley & Sons.


I am nearly at the end of my MEd (TL) course and I recently handed in an assessment task. Days after submitting it, I now realise, I misconstrued what I was supposed to do. I was to demonstrate how picture books can supplement curricular learning across all KLA’s (not just in literacy). I was to sample five assorted resources to demonstrate this. But in my “determined’ (and erroneous) way, I happily chose five resources to supplement one particular area of the curriculum. Now, as I begin the next assessment task, I realise I have made a ridiculous and careless error, by not choosing a variety of picture books as examples. I think this because assessment task two is about choosing one topical unit or theme within a subject and providing examples of high interest, quality literature to address learning outcomes in curriculum programs.

I (like most students) put a great deal of effort into my assignments (sometimes I think too much – just ask my family!) And now, nearly at the end, I feel I have faltered, and am a little disillusioned, confused and very disappointed in myself.
It’s bad to hold on to negative feelings, so I needed to post this ‘amendment’ just to make it right for me. I may even send the link to this post to my subject coordinator, by way of apology of being so misguided in my interpretation of what the task was. (Sorry Kasey!)


With Book Week just behind us, I had been reading some great resources that I could have used in my assessment task. Just in my library there are thousands of books to choose from, but to keep it relevant, here is a brief summary of three 2017 Children’s Book Council of Australia Winners (CBCA, 2017) and a snapshot of how they can enhance learning across the curriculum.

Rockhopping (2016) by Trace Balla, is the CBCA 2017 Book of the Year for Younger Readers. It is an intimately illustrated picture book in a graphic novel format that takes readers on an adventure of discovery in the Grampians National Park in Victoria. The book details a camping trip between Clancy and her Uncle Egg as they hike the Gariwerd (the Grampians) in search of the source of the Glenelg River. Along the way they examine and identify many features in the surrounding environment in detail, which is illustrated in the story. Great links to geography (location and environment), maths (mapping, time, distance) and the connectedness of Aboriginal people to their land can easily be made with this text.


Go Home, Cheeky Animals! (2016) by Johanna Bell is the CBCA 2017 Early Childhood Book of the Year. It is interestingly illustrated by Dion Beasley and tells a funny and thought-provoking tale about family, home and place. The story of Johanna and Dion’s collaboration to create this story ( is an excellent way to bring students into further discussion about this book. Links with the geography syllabus (location – place and Country), maths (counting), and learning about Aboriginal perspective through cultural awareness. Also a great lesson in meeting Australian Curriculum general capabilities standards, for students to gain personal and social capabilities, and ethical and intercultural understanding (ACARA, 2016).


Gary (2016) by Leila Rudge (also illustrator) is a 2017 CBCA Early Childhood Honour book. It is a thoughtfully and amusingly-illustrated picture book about a racing pigeon that can’t fly. Gary listens carefully to the other pigeon’s adventurous travel stories and carefully records all the details in his scrapbook. One day, Gary accidently ends up in the travel basket and finds himself lost and alone and a very long way from his loft. However, he soon discovers that flying is not the only way to get home.

Students found it interesting to learn about racing pigeons and their behaviours, as well as the fact that some played a significant role in wartime manoeuvres. Connections to the history curriculum can be made here, as well as to maths (mapping, measurement, time and distance).


I would also like to state for the record, that (like all TL’s) when I read to my students, I constantly make reference to (and encourage discovery of) their curriculum learning (past, present and future). Importantly, I ask open-ended questions so they can feel a connectedness to their own real-world experiences and learning beyond school.




Gary. [Cover image]. Retrieved from

 Go home, cheeky animals! [Cover image]. Retrieved from

 Rockhopping. [Cover image]. Retrieved from

You can’t live a positive life with a negative mind. Retrieved from

Your mind is a garden. Retrieved from



Australian Curriculum and Assessment Reporting Authority (ACARA). (2016). General capabilities. Retrieved from

Balla, T. (2016). Rockhopping. Allen and Unwin: Australia.

Bell, J. (2016). Go home, cheeky animals!. Allen and Unwin: Australia.

Children’s Book Council of Australia (CBCA). (2017). Book of the year winners 2017. Retrieved from

Rudge, L. (2016). Gary. Walker Books: Australia.

ETL523 Assignment 2: Part B

ETL523 Digital Citizenship in Schools – Reflective Post.

THANK YOU for a subject that was pertinent, current and contextually relevant to my professionalism.

The course modules are brilliant! Again, so practical and tangible. So many readings, blogs, clips, policies, texts etc., (that I still haven’t conquered) that deepened my holistic understanding of the digital world in general. So many great references from these that I can use in my everyday teaching world to better cater for my students, support my pedagogy and that of my peers, and be inspired to not be afraid!

I feel much more confident and buoyed by my learning in this course to go forth and inspire our learners and inculcate them with the 21st century skills they will need to function in a divergent and capricious world. I understand the importance of changing my mindset and ‘thinking big’.

With this newfound confidence comes opportunity to step up and be an agent for change (thanks Julie). With that in mind, I am happy to be earnestly considering become an information leader in our school and not be intimidated by all those GenY’s I work with.

I’m on a mission to spread the word that we are all capable of enacting change (again, thanks Julie) and, as leaders of learning, we must first inspire and engender ourselves to go forth with competence and confidence in implementing change to deliver ‘new’ learning.

Before undertaking this course, I thought I was passionate about 21st century pedagogy – now I know I am – and I believe I can contribute greatly to implementing it with greater purpose at my school. I love the philosophy of the Melbourne Declaration where students become “successful learners, confident and creative individuals, and active and informed citizens” (MCEETYA, 2009, p. 3).

Particular relevant to the context in which I work, something has to change. Our kids have lost interest in learning. Nothing inspires them, nothing seems to ignite their curiosity or passion. They are very insular in their thinking and limited in their experiential knowledge.

Our students are obsessively attached to their devices. They live and breathe connectedness via the internet every day! Yet, so many of them do not understand the power of what they hold in their hands – the capability of what it can teach them – as opposed to it being an extension of their social life. Mind you, I realise a balance has to be found between the leisure / learning paradigm.

A comprehensive Digital Citizenship program in a K-6 school (and beyond) will definitely meet the 4C’s criteria. After completing the first assignment in this course, I was fully immersed (along with my awesome collaborators) in how to implement such a program. The practicality of undertaking that assessment has proved invaluable to my professional development on so many levels. Firstly, my new technological skills are great (I can’t believe I made and animation and posted it on YouTube!) Secondly, the collaboration that went into producing the end product really helped me ‘step into students shoes’ to see how intimidating it is (at first), and then how wonderfully rewarding it is at the completion of the project.

Finally, the knowledge and resources I gathered during the process will be used in my teaching program. Wow! A semester of teaching already organised. Knowing that these resources were specifically chosen to target teaching digital citizenship to students in a K-6 setting, now, here, in the real world is both rewarding and very excitingly motivating to continue my journey of learning.

With the completion of this assessment task, I am looking forward to presenting my semesters’ work to my principal and colleagues as some ‘food for thought’.



Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs (MCEETYA). (2008). Melbourne declaration on education goals for young Australians. Retrieved from


ETL505 – Assessment Task 2 – Part C


ETL505 – Describing and analysing education resources. Sounded relatively simple! You choose a resource, you try it, and it’s either useful or it’s not. Then you can describe the ‘why’s’ about its usefulness, or lack thereof. However, the addition of ‘metadata’ changes the dynamics substantially.

The course text by Philip Hider, was actually a great read. Terminology aside, it really explained the history, context, justification and implication for information resource description in an easy-to-read format. Sullivan (2013) comments that “[Hider] has a special knack of encapsulating concepts, explaining what he is writing about in simple terms. Given that at times metadata as a concept can be remarkably abstract – this skill of Hider is remarkable” (p.188).

The history of subject classification – DDC, that was first published in 1876 and now, its 23rd edition, currently maintained by the OCLC through the online version – WebDewey; and the LCC that was created and adopted in 1897, with the addition of a set of subject headings (Hider, 2012), sets the scene to understand the significance of the ongoing development of information resource description and the relationship and crucial function of metadata in the continuous advancement of information organisation via the description and classification of resources.

The tools of library organisation – arrangements, indexes, databases, library catalogues, federated search systems, digital collections, search engines, and, online directories – all interplay to facilitate the success of searching to – find, identify, select and obtain – all with the end-user in mind. Information retrieval systems can use metadata only if it is available” (Hider, 2012, p.59).

The evolution of metadata standards and cataloguing rules for information resource creators has enabled information professionals to develop a set of standards that guide conformity and uniformity for cataloguing rules. The standards that guide cataloguing and data entry “set forth a framework for understanding the bibliographic universe” (Oliver, 2010, p.24), and have enabled the interoperability of catalogue records that is now possible through global networking via the internet and World Wide Web (Intner & Weihs, 2014). This also highlights the importance of professional library affiliations that support, guide and oversee the implementation and regulation of these standards.

Metadata standards can be influenced by a wide range of factors in any given context and many are adapted for use in their specific domains. With this in mind, having access to the SCIS catalogue is undeniably advantageous. The SCIS Standards for Cataloguing and Data Entry and SCIS Subject Headings that guide the expertise of the SCIS cataloguers are exceptional and purposeful. “The touchstone for all decisions about classification policy is usefulness to school libraries” (SCIS, 2015, p.3-7).

Learning about the intricacies of information resource description and discovering the many ways in which you can search for a resource has taken me on an enlightening and fulfilling learning journey. The future of online catalogues that display records in a remarkable number of creative ways (Kelsey, 2014), and the speed with which technology continues to develop presents an interesting paradigm into where the libraries of the future will go. The way data, resources and knowledge is shared across the globe makes libraries accessible in every corner of the Earth.

The implications for us as Librarians? Greater interconnectedness. Accessibility to far-reaching resources, places and other specialists in our field. Ongoing professional and personal development. Continuing along our life-wide learning journey and savouring every moment along the way – living life in the Information Age.


Footnote: No idea why this is underlined, but I can not remove it for whatever reason!

ETL503 Assessment Task 2: Part C – Reflection

Wow! Where to start? My head is spinning after completing the latest mammoth assessment task! So much reading. So much to take in and consider in my humble little role as TL!! Here’s what I’ve got so far….Make a collection management policy! (Hughes-Hassell & Mancall, 2005). Keep better tabs on resources ordered (books and sundry) & newly accessioned (probably a report in OASIS for that!)

TPL for me in OASIS, SCIS etc., and then the new OLIVER system – can’t wait for that because of it being a much better library management system that I will get training for and it offers library access to students, teachers and the wider learning community 24/7! Including lots of e-resources which our library doesn’t currently have. E-resources and e-books is something I want to promote in our library. I am currently investigating subscriptions.

Replacing 10% of your collection is an interesting statistic. My collection definitely needs a good ‘weed’ – as opposed to it only getting a good ‘read’ – but not sure budgetary-wise whether it will sustain the suggested replacement stat. So maybe a ‘mini-map’ to review one section at a time! (and keep working on advocating for, or finding, more $$$!) Maybe some e-magazine subscriptions – have lots of visual literacy learners (particularly boys) who love fishing, cars, bikes, sports and cooking! Great appeal to a wide audience but I am concerned about the number of advertisements in commercial magazines (like the print version) (Moody, 2005).

Lots of work to do for a one-woman-show! Must remember to ask for help and see if I can get some regular volunteers to help with book covering and shelving.

Another area I am working on is aesthetics by making some changes to the physical space as well as how the collection is housed. Making some interest boxes and author boxes for popular titles for ease of access, especially for K-2 readers.

The more I search for books to support students and teachers, I realise I have so many resources, especially teacher resources (class sets of books, reading and comprehension kits etc.) it’s really sinking in how well you have to know your collection in order to be able to put your hand on a resource. Yes, I know you can search for it via an inquiry, but “knowing” the resource is so much better. This is also extremely true for fiction titles. To be able to advise students on the content and/or match it to their level of interest is yet another talent for TLs (me) to develop. Especially after all that reading about censorship – conscious or not! (Johnson, 2010).

It’s a huge job – collection management! Maintaining and managing the physical collection, let alone e-resources and other technological ever-changing platforms! The physical space – is a fine balance of change and stability. There is a comfort for some students that the library space brings in its consistency of look and feel. However, we live in an ever-changing world, so our libraries should reflect that with changing displays, new books, new artworks, posters, digital presentations (by students) scrolling on the IWB, new maker spaces! As TLs we have been entrusted with big responsibility as someone who has final say/control of the space and its contents across a whole school context (Braxton, 2014).

Weeding! Unfortunately, I have lots of resources that meet the MUSTIE/MUSTY criteria!

Well, as usual, too much to say and not a big enough word limit to say it in! Leant lots, but so much more to learn and get my head around – let alone master!

503 Annotated Resource Guide

Butler, J. (2015). What’s up with the weather? [Caulfield Grammar School]. Retrieved from

This is user-friendly website has been developed and maintained by a teacher librarian from an Australian school. It explores a wide-variety of weather conditions and other weather-related aspects such as: climate, how weather has changed over time, human impact on climate change, the impact of weather on the environment, how weather influences where and how we live.

It is an interactive site that has multiple links for users to explore. It is contextually appropriate and has plenty of Australian content to make it relevant. The information is modern and presents videos, real-life situations, short documentaries, animations, games and puzzles.

Once this site has been introduced by the teacher, students will then be able to explore it easily. The content is appropriate to a Stage 1 period of learning and will also offer extension work for students to engage in deep understanding and higher order thinking projects. An extremely useful resource easily accessed by a LibGuides Community search using the K-12 filter.

Education Services Australia Limited. (2015). Changing lands and skies. [TLF-IDM014081]. Retrieved from

This Australian resource is accessible via the internet and has been composited by experienced teachers. These ‘scientific discovery’ units align with outcomes from the Australian curriculum and include lesson plans, maps, digital resources, Indigenous weather knowledge, PowerPoint presentations, and worksheets to consolidate student learning.

This unit is designed to be teacher-driven and use the hyperlinked resources and downloadable learning materials. As lifelong learners, it is important that teachers search new resources to keep themselves up to date with the latest curricular content and materials, especially with the implementation of the National curriculum. This unit provides teachers with a great opportunity to do this.

The work in this unit demonstrates how science can be used in daily life. It also places great emphasises on the connectedness of Aboriginal people with the land and skies. Specific tabs provide links to material that has Australian content about weather.

This resource was succinctly found with Scootle and refining the search using the Year level filter.


Forte, D. (Producer), Muehl, B., & Sevenson, J. (Writers). (2004). The Magic School Bus: Wonders of weather [DVD]. United States: Scholastic Media.

This audio-visual electronic resource is in a DVD format. It contains two weather-related episodes of the Magic School Bus that investigate thunderstorms and the water cycle.

While this resource could be considered dated (first produced in the 1990’s), it is still relevant for students because this particular content investigates “what makes weather?” The exploration of this question enables students to gain good background knowledge on what the weather is and how it happens.

Students enjoy watching shows that are made specifically for them. The Magic School Bus series presents science in a unique, imaginative and informative student-centred way with a huge focus on visual literacy. This format provides a passive option for students to learn, which assists teachers in catering for all types of learners.

This source is from my school library and was found using a general enquiry about weather via the current library management system (OASIS).


French, J. (2011). Flood. Sydney: Scholastic Australia.

Jackie French is a prolific Australian author. She wrote this book after the devastating Queensland floods of 2010-2011. Greatly relevant to the Australian way of life, it tells the story of this natural disaster through the eyes of a cattle dog that has lost his family. This aspect places students in situ and helps them to see and ‘feel’ the events through an alternative perspective.

This striking picture book describes the Queensland floods with a simple but powerful storyline. However, Bruce Whatley’s evocative water-colour illustrations, truly shows the devastation and champions the book’s impact.

This book graphically depicts Australia’s extreme weather events and shows how respect for all people, positivity and kindness can help on a national level.

This resource is from my library and needs no searching! Other books in this series are Fire and the new Cyclone.

NOTE: Jackie French reading the book at:

and; dramatic time-lapse photography of the Brisbane River in flood at: 


Gallagher, B. (2015). 100 facts: weather. United Kingdom: Miles Kelly Publishing Ltd.

This large-format child-friendly 48-page nonfiction print resource is fantastically illustrated. It provides learners with 100 numbered facts that cover a wide range of topics from climate zones all around the world. It also has quizzes and cartoons and some crafty activities that show students how to make a variety of weather-measuring instruments. Great for scientific investigations!

In line with my resource acquisition policy and budgetary considerations, I purchased 4 copies of this book from the UK’s Book Depository (@ $6.43 per copy & free shipping). Having multiple copies means students can access this resource more effectively. Without having to constantly share a single resource, students have time to explore, identify and gather information they need to complete their work.

This is a modern, contemporary resource with up-to-date information. It was initially mentioned in Scootle, viewed in Goodreads and eventually, purchased from Brook Depository.


Germein, K. (2002). Big rain coming. Australia: Penguin.

This book is beautifully illustrated by Bronwen Bancroft and tells the story of people in an isolated Aboriginal community waiting for it to rain. It describes the feelings of the people as they wait for the rain to come and dramatically visually expresses the changes in the sky as the rain approaches.

It showcases the Australian outback and how significant the weather (particularly rain) effects the people and landscape. This story truly supports Australian curriculum outcomes in showcasing the significance of connectedness of Aboriginal people with the land and skies.

The sparse text is morphed into Bronwen Bancroft’s stunningly beautiful artworks to help dramatise the story. The illustrations reflect Aboriginal themes and make a bold visual statement that supports the importance of rain in our dry Australian climate.

This resource is relevant and contemporary and is from my school library and was found using a title search in the current library management system (OASIS).


Moon, M. (2013). How the clouds were made – Dreamtime story (the first rain cloud). [Video clip]. Australia: Cloudskipper Dreaming. Retrieved from

To complement Katrina Germein’s Big Rain Coming, students could view this YouTube clip. It runs for 2:13 minutes and tells an Aboriginal story of how the first rain cloud was made. It has great visual appeal and is accompanied by a soundtrack that includes traditional Indigenous musical instruments. Students read the story on the screen or could have it read to them by an Aboriginal student or community member to further enhance Aboriginal Dreamtime beliefs and connectedness to country.

This resource provides a quiet, reflective opportunity for students to feel their own connectedness to the sky and earth. Its ‘quietness’ is in contrast to the traditional ‘noise’ associated with weather. It is a brief but alternative resource that may meet the needs of a different set of learners.

This resource was found with a YouTube search using ‘Aboriginal stories about weather’ as criteria.


O’Rourke, A. (2016). Extreme Weather. [Middleton Cross Plains Schools]. Retrieved from

This web-based American resource is teacher-created and provides students with a username and password that has them one click away from directly linking to TrueFlix. TrueFlix is powered by Scholastic (USA) and presents their award-winning theme content that has a global overview, through purposeful technology-based inquiry.

With ‘extreme weather’ in mind, students can easily navigate their way around the TrueFlix site to watch a short, vividly presented video and then read the e-book about their chosen subject (e.g. thunderstorms, droughts, floods). By using linked tabs, students can explore more via the web, look at project ideas and visit an activity centre to assess their learning.

On the homepage, students can access National Geographic for kids, Weather Wiz kids and video links to severe weather experiences. Students could be provided with the URL to participate in independent or small group learning. Another extremely beneficial teacher/student resource discovered easily via a LibGuides Community search with the K-12 option as a filter.


weatherzone° website. (2016) Australian radar/lightening map. Retrieved from

This website presents weather forecasts, current weather conditions, radar images and warnings from the Bureau of Meteorology (an executive agency of the Australian Government since 1906!) as well as numerous other weather-related reports, maps and facts. It is a very reliable and highly-relevant source.

The weatherzone° website is a great tool for introducing the topic. It is a very user-friendly site that can be easily negotiated by students. It is especially pertinent to our school because the rain/storm tracker actually has our suburb clearly labelled on the satellite map. Students are placed directly in the ‘weather zone’ when viewing this live feed.

The weatherzone° website can offer a great starting point to every day. From here, students can obtain information to update their class weather chart and discuss the predicted weather for the day.

This website has great visual and interactive appeal to a variety of learners and provides a constant source of current information. I have used this resource repetitively over the years and originally sourced it from Google using ‘rain radar NSW’.


Whitaker, R. (2007). All about the weather. Sydney: Young Read

This resource is a large-format print nonfiction book. It is a fantastic resource for both students and teachers. This book presents a variety of current weather-related topics in a double-page spread. Colourful photographic images, maps, charts and graphics showcase the information which is highly readable and succinct.

From experience, I know this book series is very popular with students. Pages in this book could be copied (being mindful of copyright issues) for students to use to gather information when writing about a specific weather topic or issue of their choice. This means more students can explore, identify and gather information they need to complete tasks and demonstrate their learning.

The book suggests photographing clouds on a daily basis and then creating a time-lapse slideshow with the images to create an authentic reflective teaching tool. Easy integration of technology too!

This source is from my school library and was found using a general enquiry about weather via the current library management system (OASIS).