ETL 503 Reflective Analysis

I previously believed resourcing the curriculum entailed the teacher librarian (TL) choosing resources they thought appropriate for supporting the curriculum and reading for pleasure. I now know there are several steps in collection development and management and many elements in each. The processes are selection criteria and evaluation, collection evaluation and deselection (weeding). There are also ethical, budgeting and censorship issues to consider.

An important aspect for the collection is balance. This is more than a balance of fiction versus non-fiction or physical verses digital as I thought. Selecting resources incorporates learning styles, pedagogy, student abilities and backgrounds (IFLA, 2006, p.34). The collection also needs to be balanced in that it is diverse and inclusive of all students and perspectives (National Library of New Zealand, n.d.).

I am now aware of different ways of evaluating the collection (user and collection centred) to identify usage and gaps (Johnson, 2014, p.302). This is evident in the forum post ‘Using output measures as tools for purchasing’ (Silver, 2020a) and my reply to another student’s post in ‘Collection Analysis’ (Silver, 2020b).In the future, I will be able to use a larger range of strategies to gain more in depth evaluation of collection usefulness.

Curation is an important aspect of collection development to help users access useful resources. (Oddone, 2019). Curation can be equally applied to digital and physical resources. The TL can assist resource integration of cross-curriculum priorities (CCP) into programs through annotated bibliographies of available resources.

From my learning I was able to discern areas to build upon previous experiences in collection development and management. Some of these are detailed in the blog post ‘Resourcing the curriculum – collection development process’. (Silver, 2020c)

A librarian’s job is to provide information and multiple perspectives (IFLA, n.d). Many librarians self-censor to avoid controversy (Dawkins, 2018, p.9). One way to overcome this is by including the issue of censorship in the collection development policy (CDP). This allows the TL to raise the issue with the principal and gain their views and support (Dawkins, 2018, p.9). I will definitely use this strategy in the future.

Digital resources require a balance of infrastructure and accession costs (licences, fees etc) within the budget. Whilst digital resources can be evaluated by several of the same criteria as print, they also require specific evaluations. These need to take into account elements such as accessibility (indexes, interactivity) and features for users with special needs (read aloud, highlighting etc) There is also a need to consider factors such as technical issues, budgeting costs (initial purchase and on-going), legal and licensing issues and access (how and for how long, how many users at once, effects of cancellation).(IFLA, 2006 p.34).

A reluctant weeder in the past, I have come to the realisation that weeding is important to increase a user’s ability to find relevant, current material (Morgester, 2018, p.27). There are many ways to weed, other than appearance (the main criteria I used to use). Date and relevance to curriculum and user needs are important (Vnuk, 2015, p.6). It reflects badly on the library and undermines user’s confidence and work if resources are outdated in information or attitudes (National Library of New Zealand, n.d).

Increasing digital resources usage and their ability to be shared raises many copyright issues (Moody, 2018, p.10). The TL can use Creative Commons to educate staff and students on how they can responsibly share, and remix work. I have furthered my knowledge about copyright and school exemptions as outlined in the Educational Licencing agreements. By studying the regulation outlines on the Smartcopying website (ref), I was able to apply these to common school situations (blog post, forum copyright questions). I now feel more confident in aiding the school community in this area

Reflecting upon the readings the future of the library looks exciting with the library being a multi-faceted place of learning in the areas of study, reading, collaboration and creating (Loh, 2018, p.4). This supports and extends student learning in a variety of ways from individual study to collaboration. It is a case of not only providing digital resource for information but tools (physical and electronic) as well to help the school community to create and communicate their own knowledge (School District of Palm Beach County, 2019). A virtual presence for the library can be achieved with consideration to budget and access. Libraries can create libguides, databases, curate free web resources, embed instructions and provide access to digital resources (Boyers, 2016, p.6).

The CDP is an important documented library plan. It supports the school’s vision and values (ALIAS & VCTL, 2011, p.8) and provides a framework for achieving this (Gregory, 2019, p.29). The CDP ensures efficient guidance of resourcing by matching user needs to the collection to support teaching and learning (Agee, 2019, p.6). It can be used as a reference for issues regarding selection, acquisition, deselection decisions and material challenges (Johnson, 2018, p.86)

By regularly reviewing the CDP it will remain a strategic document to future proof the collection. This allows for changes in pedagogy, curriculum and technological developments to be accommodated. There is a need for the TL to keep up with trends and changes in technology within library services and schools. Sources such as the Horizon Report (2015) outline these trends which can influence the direction of the CDP.

Changes in the information landscape such as increasing use of digital resources and the internet influence what the CDP includes. For example, increasing use of mobile technologies widen the digital divide as more resources are available online (IFLA, 2016, p.8). Libraries can create more equality via provision of internet access, digital skills, an understanding of digital issues (privacy etc) and combating fake news (Robinson, 2018, p.14).

Changing curriculum needs within digital technologies needs consideration in the CDP to support teaching and learning. Both students and teachers will need to be able to access resources that are relevant to the curriculum. Keeping abreast with changes in the Australian Curriculum and relevant state syllabuses can influence the CDP. Knowing the changes allows for planning of resources to accommodate new curriculums, which can be listed as a curriculum goal or priority in the CDP.

The major realisation from this subject is that resourcing the curriculum is not the sole responsibility of the TL, it is a collaborative effort. Teachers as subject experts need to be involved in requesting resources (IFLA, 2006, p.34), the deselection process (New Zealand Library Services, n.d.) and curriculum mapping (Gregory, 2019, p.39). There are many other opportunities to involve the school community in the collection including patron driven acquisitions, surveys, and selection committees.

 

 

 

References:

Agee, S. (2019). Curate a digital collection for all learners. Knowledge Quest, 48(2), 6-7. www.knowledgequest.aasl.org

Australian Library and Information Association School, & Victorian Catholic Teacher Librarians. (2007). A manual for developing policies and procedures in Australian school library resource centres. http://www.asla.org.au/policy/policy-development-manual.aspx

Boyer, B. (2016). Meet Your Learners Where They Are: Virtualizing the School Library. Internet@Schools, 23(1), 4–6.

Dawkins, A.M. (2018). The decision by school librarians to self-censor: The impact of perceived administrative discomfort. Teacher Librarian, 45(3),8-12.

Johnson, P. (2014). Fundamentals of collection development and management.

Loh, Chin Ee. (2019). Envisioning the School Library of the Future: A 21 st Century Framework. https//.doi.org./10.13140/RG.2.2.32524.36489

Moody, G. (2018). Libraries are Under Attack: Here’s How They Can Fight Back. IFLA Trend Reporthttp://trends.ifla.org

Oddone, K. (2020, April 6). Digital content curation: How to do it right! [blog post]. https://scis.edublogs.org/tag/collection-development/

Robinson, C. (2018). Libraries Matter. IFLA Trend Reporthttp://trends.ifla.org

Silver, T. (2020a, April 16). Using output measures as tools for purchasing [Online discussion comment]. Interact 2. https://iteract2.csu.edu.au

Silver, T. (2020b, May 9). Collection analysis [Online discussion comment]. Interact 2. https://iteract2.csu.edu.au

Silver, T. (2020c, April 27). Resourcing the curriculum – Collection development process [blog post]. https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2020/04/27/resourcing-the-curriculum-collection-development-process/

Vnuk, R (2018). The weeding handbook: A shelf-by-shelf guide. ALA Editions.

 

 

Creative Commons – lets share that creativity!

 

Share your ideas“Share your ideas” by tiachachat is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

You know when you see something really cool – a poster, infograph, music or artwork that just explains a concept really well and you just want to share it around? Before you do, stop and think, that will have a copyright. A great way to find resources that you can reuse are to search for ones that have creative common licences. Under this licence the creator still has copyright but has given permission to users to share the resource. There are different versions of the licence as detailed in the infographic below.

Creative Commons: free photos for bloggers – the ultimate guide by Foter.com’ by Foter is licenced under CC-BY-SA 3.0

If you would like more details, Sara Hawkins (2014) explains Creative Commons in an easy to understand manner on her website here.

Using Creative Commons is a great way to share ideas and resources and possibly recreate/mix and share again. They provide a great platform for students and teachers to use, reuse and possibly modify works to build knowledge, staying within the copyright laws.

You can learn more about Creative Commons in Australia on my blog post ‘Wait, I can’t just copy that photo?’ (Silver, 2018).

 

References:

Foter. (n.d). Creative Commons: Free photos for bloggers – the ultimate guide. https://foter.com/blog/how-to-attribute-creative-commons-photos/

Hawkins, S. (2014). Creative Commons licenses explained in plain English. https://sarafhawkins.com/creative-commons-licenses-explained-plain-english/

Silver, T. (2018). Wait, I can’t just copy that photo?. Library learnings. https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/03/14/wait-i-cant-just-copy-that-photo/

Copyright – don’t be in the wrong

Image by mohamed Hassan from Pixabay

As a teacher I knew that there were copyright laws about the amount of work we were allowed to legally copy – 10% or 1 chapter of a book.

During this subject I have learnt that there is so much more to copyright in schools and it is the TL’s roles to make others in the school community aware of copyright laws. Whilst I used to teach students to acknowledge where they got the information from (that is, not to plagiarise) I used to wonder about copyright specifically for education. Questions arose such as:

  • can a teacher copy parts of the text book, commercially produced work and worksheets for tests?
  • is a student able to put licensed popular music in their presentations?
  • Can the school use music for the bell song?
  • Is it OK to copy class sets of worksheets?
  • can you copy parts of videos and music to incorporate into your own work off the internet?

I found these answers and more on the  Smartcopy website (National Copyright Unit, n.d.-a) , which  details copyright information specifically for education institutions in Australia.

My main takeaways from the site were that Australian educational providers have extra allowances to the copyright laws under two licences.

  1. The Education Licence A: Statutory Broadcast Licence (National Copyright Unit, n.d.-b)  which relates to the copying of television and radio programs;  and
  2. The Education Licence B: Statutory Text and Artistic Works Licence (National Copyright Unit, n.d.-c) which  outlines guidelines for copying literary, dramatic, musical and artistic works.

Schools are covered by extra licences relating to music and video files. These are the:

However, the licences must be read carefully as there are certain criteria to be met and some services/copying are excluded (for example, streaming services such as Netflix).

A copyright infringement I was unaware of was that schools are breaking copyright if they show/view movies unless it is for an educational purpose. If the viewing is for a non-educational purpose (such as showing on a bus trip, wet weather entertainment etc) the school must have  a co-curricular licence. This is not a blanket licence cover for NSW Department of Education schools. (National Copyright Unit, n.d. -g).

The rules of copyright can be complex, however, the Smartcopying website is relatively straight forward, easy to understand and has provided answers to my questions.

References:

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-a). Smartcopying. http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/home

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-b). Education Licence A: Statutory Broadcast Licence. Smartcopying. http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/copyright-guidelines/education-licences-(statutory-and-voluntary-licences)/education-licence-a-statutory-broadcast-licence

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-c). Education Licence B: Statutory Text and Artistic Works Licence. Smartcopying.  http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/copyright-guidelines/education-licences-(statutory-and-voluntary-licences)/education-licence-b-statutory-text-and-artistic-works-licence

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-d). Education Licence C: APRA Licence. Smartcopying. http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/copyright-guidelines/education-licences-(statutory-and-voluntary-licences)/education-licence-c-apra-licence

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-e). Education Licence D: AMCOS Licence. Smartcopying. http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/copyright-guidelines/education-licences-(statutory-and-voluntary-licences)/education-licence-d-amcos-licence

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-f). Education Licence E: AMCOS/ARIA/APRA Licence. Smartcopying.  http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/copyright-guidelines/education-licences-(statutory-and-voluntary-licences)/education-licence-e-amcos-aria-apra-licence

National Copyright Unit. (n.d.-g). Playing Films for Non-Educational Purposes. Smartcopying. http://www.smartcopying.edu.au/information-sheets/schools/playing-films-for-non-educational-purposes

Resourcing the curriculum – resource selection criteria

Image by klimkin from Pixabay

Resourcing the curriculum, what does this mean?

When I worked for a year as a temporary teacher in charge of the library (before beginning this masters) I thought resourcing the curriculum was providing resources for students and staff. This is in part true, however, my evaluation and selection of resources  were based on limited criteria. These were:

  • relevant to the curriculum
  • appealing to users – eye catching design (front cover, graphics/photos/illustrations in resource), useful features such as quick facts, easy to read ( level, style – such as graphic novel)
  • current
  • closing a gap in the collection
  • popular (for student literature)
  • from a noteable list (such as Premier’s Reading Challenge new book or Children’s Book Council Award nominee)

After readings in this subject I now realise that these criteria were a good start to evaluation and selection but there are elements I hadn’t considered when resourcing the curriculum. Referring specifically to collection evaluation and selection there are more criteria I could add. According to Australian Library and Information Association Schools and Australian Victorian Catholic Teacher Librarians (2017, p.12) these include:

  • respectful of all peoples – free from stereotypes and roles in society based on gender .
  • authoritative – the author is credible in this field of expertise.

Kimmel (2014) adds:

  • suitability to reader – the content is emotionally and intellectually appropriate for the user.

E-books were an area I was interested in but didn’t have the opportunity to purchase. When I do I will take into account Zipke’s (2014) criteria for evaluating e-books including navigation, sound, interactions and teaching specific skills. There is also the area of digital resource evaluation, with the below criteria outlined by Gregory (2019, p.56):

  • Does it have authority? Is it from a reputable source?
  • Do features make it more accessible to users than print resources?
  • Are there licencing costs and restrictions?
  • Can the library support the technology  – hardware and software?

When purchasing World Book Online (WBO) I unknowingly took into account Gregory’s criteria. It is a reputable source (having previously published hardbound print editions of encyclopedias). Features, including search functions and highlighting text to speech make it easier to access, especially for those students with print difficulties. I examined the licencing costs and restrictions and managed to negotiate a deal with the representative for the first year of fees. Whilst the library didn’t have the computers to support the use of WBO it was accessible to the teachers and students via online log in and therefore could be used on the smartboards in classrooms, classroom access to laptops and at home.

Knowing these extra criteria will help me to select the most appropriate resources in the future for user needs.

References:

Australian Library and Information Association Schools and Victorian Catholic Teacher Librarians. (2017).  A Manual for Developing Policies and Procedures in Australian School Library Resource Centres (2nd edition). https://www.alia.org.au/sites/default/files/ALIA%20Schools%20policies%20and%20procedures%20manual_FINAL.pd

Gregory, V. (2019). Collection development and management for 21st century library collections: An introduction (2nd ed). American Library Association.

Kimmel, S.C. (2014). Developing collections to empower learners, American Library Association. ProQuest Ebook Central. http://ebookcentral.proquest.com/

Zipke, M. (2014). Building an E-Book Library. Reading Teacher67(5), 375–383.  https://doi.10.1002/TRTR.1221

Resourcing the curriculum – collection development process

Image by klimkin from Pixabay

Previously whilst working as a teacher in charge of the library and having had no formal training in the collection development processes I found myself overwhelmed with where to start for resourcing the curriculum. I have since discovered there are several steps in the process. I will briefly outline these and what I did and didn’t do in the past.

  1. Know the school community – if there are wide variances in reading levels different resources on the same subject may need to be purchased (Stephens & Franklin, 2013, p.36). Being new to the school (and not wanting to make waves or be seen as pushy) I had no idea what the requirements were of the school community. It was only later in the year after I had had all of the classes for the year and built a rapport with some of the teachers that I started to find out different the different reading levels of students. One of the best sources for information was one of the learning support officers who I used to encourage to use the library for her services (much better than sitting in the cold hallways!). After discussions with her I was able to order in hi-lo books for some of the stage 3 students for her to use for individual reading with them. Without speaking to the learning support officer I would not have known of this need. In the future other ways I would get to know the school community is by consulting the school policy, NAPLAN results and asking to attend literacy meetings. I did rotate around stage meetings each week and this was a good way to get to know the teachers and what they wanted curriculum wise.

A balanced collection should also include resources representing groups of the school community, such as indigenous, English as second other language (ESOL) and other special interest groups (National Library, n.d.,  building an inclusive collection). For the school I was at I would also include more resources on indigenous culture (resources in this area were lacking in number and some  were outdated and /or disrespectful using ancient terminology and views. I did purchase some indigenous game cards which were popular in NAIDOC week.

2. Consult collection management policy (Evans, p.83). This was non – existent or well hidden because I did not find one. Having viewed some collection management policies (such as this one from Windsor High School Library) I now have a better idea of what to include or be thinking about for collection management.

3. Examine current collection to identify gaps; weed any unsuitable resources. Weeding is essential, however, like some of the librarians described by Morgester (2018, p.27) I had trouble letting go of some of the collection. However, in the back of my mind, I held beliefs similar to Sawyer (cited in Matthews, 2010, p.54) that deselection makes the library more credible and increases circulation of the current and relevant resources. There was a lot of deselection to be done, with many resources being over 10 years old or no longer relevant to the needs of users. Some posters were even from the 1970s  and sets of encyclopedias from the 1980s. I spent a lot of my time just collecting items from the shelves to weed, so much so, and one of my greatest regrets was that I had to leave the actual deselection process on the system (Oliver) to my successor.

4. Consult selection aids to discover high quality, appropriate resources. In Australia reviews can be found at magpies.net.au and from various publishing houses such as Scholastic. I used to do a lot of my collection development from new titles available from Scholastic (as this was the easiest for me to order through). I did also consult the numerous catalogues that were sent to the library. Since starting this course I have also discovered the SCIS website (www.scisdata.com.au) that provides a searchable database for resources and is very handy for resource selection. I also used to use User request or patron driven acquisitions, which according to Zmuda & Luhtala ( 2017, p22) can also be valuable for increasing the collection. I know a lot of students were ecstatic to have a book in the collection they had requested and these books were often popular and borrowed frequently.

5. Compare resources against evaluation criteria. The TL or collection committee decide on resources to purchase. The collection will be more diverse if there is collaboration between staff and students who use the resources (Hibner & Kelly, p.5). Evans (2015), also suggests that at least one parent be involved in the committee (p.96). I was solely responsible for purchasing resources and as I was new to the school I didn’t really know the school community. I think given more time I would have liked to establish a library committee to better represent a variety of views and represent the school community.

There have been many things I have learnt so far in this subject that have built upon what I have done in the past and will dramatically improve and broaden my future practices .

References:

Evans, G. E., & Saponaro, M. Z. (2012). Library and information science text: Collection management basics. ProQuest Ebook Central. https://ebookcentral.proquest.com

Hibner, H., & Kelly, M. (2013). Making a collection count : A holistic approach to library collection management. ProQuest Ebook Central. https://ebookcentral.proquest.com

Magpies. magpies.net.au

Mathews, B. (2010). Weeding Grows the Garden. American Libraries41(5), 54.

Morgester, A. (2018). Transforming my perspective. Knowledge Quest, 47(2), 22–27.

New Zealand National Library (n.d.) Building an inclusive collection [webpage].   https://natlib.govt.nz/schools/school-libraries/collections-and-resources/building-an-inclusive-collection

Schools Catalogue Information Service (SCIS). https://www.scisdata.com/

Stephens, C. G., & Franklin, P. (2013). School library day-to-day operations : School library day-to-day operations. https://ebookcentral.proquest.com

Tait, C. (2016). Windsor High School Library: Library collection management policy. https://windsor-h.schools.nsw.gov.au/content/dam/doe/sws/schools/w/windsor-h/localcontent/whs_library_collectionmanagementpolicy.pdf

Zmuda, A., & Luhtala, M. (2017). Turn up the volume in the library through personalization. Teacher Librarian, 45(1), 21–25.

ETL504 Teacher Librarian as Leader – Reflective blog

As I learnt in our case study group collaborating with others is not always easy, even if one does come willing to collaborate. Our group did not function as well as I had hoped as a collaborative group. People seemed to just work cooperatively posting their own research and people took turns volunteering to coordinate and post the case studies. Whilst we did manage to create case study pieces that were of a high standard and explored many issues, I felt that there was a synergy missing within the group. Members were friendly and communication was generally clear between postings on the blog and wiki so the dynamics may have been caused by a lack of trust and time issues or a lack of clear roles. It was only towards the end of the group work I felt the group started to trust each other enough to comment on posts and interact more. One person (not me) emerged as a clear leader within the group. She was the first to set up the blog pages and the person who set up the wikis each week for the case studies. This was a good example of servant leadership as setting up everything allowed the group to function better and start contributing each week. This person also had leadership traits of being approachable and people seemed to turn to her for advice within the group. From this group experience, I have several takeaways for the future.

  1. Working online can help with communication if somebody misses something, it also allows all to contribute.
  2. Establishing rules for deadlines also helped – for example please post superficial and deeper issues by the 5th of September.
  3. True collaboration takes trust and time to develop, I may need to review the Bastow Institute’s video on developing trust.

Even though my group wasn’t as collaborative as I had hoped, I learnt many lessons from the case studies. The standouts were scenarios that highlighted practices I hadn’t thought of before. They were:

  •  It is important to link the library outcomes and vision to the school’s outcomes and visions.
  • Promote the library to staff as well as students  – collaborate to help staff achieve their objectives. Choose 1 teacher to work with at first.
  • There are a variety of ways to promote the library.
  • And one I need to be regularly reminded of  – although we may think we can do it all, we can’t and need to work smarter not harder or we will burn out.

One area of the modules I found extremely useful was conflict management as it is not an aspect of leadership I like to deal with, as evidenced here on my blog post ‘Conflict’ (Silver, 2019, September 21).

Learning from others in the forums and thinking about my own leadership experiences has been beneficial in cementing theory into practice, such as the benefits of networking and teacher librarian conferences ( Silver, 2019, September 5).

Looking back at the subject the biggest takeaway for me is that the TL can lead from the middle in a variety of ways and I will be taking many of these ideas with me into a TL role in the future.

References:

BastowInstitute. (2015, July 27). Building Trust and Collaboration – Tracey Ezard [Video file]. Retrieved from https://youtu.be/kUkseAdKyek

 

 

 

 

Conflict

Photo by Jean Wimmerlin on Unsplash

Conflict is something I think most of us try to avoid, I know I do.  However, conflict can be beneficial if dealt with quickly and correctly. Recently I took a quiz to discover my style of conflict management. The quiz compares the results to a sample of Dutch students over five conflict-handling styles  – yielding, compromising, forcing, problem solving and avoiding. Before taking the quiz I wrote down my thoughts about my style of conflict management, which was:

  • I try to avoid it at all costs
  • if I do experience conflict I try to get to the base of the problem
  • I usually will give in a bit to the other party (I suppose this could be called compromising!)
  • I look for win/win situations for both parties

As I expected I scored quite high in problem solving and avoiding. However, I was quite surprised by some of the quiz results. I scored high in yielding (giving in completely) and only moderate on compromising. I also had a moderate preference for forcing (winning at the other’s expense) which I didn’t think I did but perhaps this is to offset the strong preference for yielding.  It seems from this test score that I have some more work to do on conflict handling to get to my ideal handling preferences which would include more compromising and less yielding and forcing. For those of you that get nervous when dealing with conflict (i.e. confronting the person), Judy Ringer’s website has an excellent article on how to approach this.

References:

McGraw-Hill Global Education Holdings. (2018). Self-Assessment 11.4: What is your preferred conflict handling style? Retrieved from http://highered.mheducation.com/sites/007040187x/student_view0/chapter11/self-assessment_11_4.html

Ringer, J. (n.d.). We have to talk: A step-by-step checklist for difficult conversations. Retrieved from https://www.judyringer.com/resources/articles/we-have-to-talk-a-stepbystep-checklist-for-difficult-conversations.php

Collaboration

Image by John Hain from Pixabay

According to (Johnston, 2015, p.39) when parties collaborate, they create more resources and ideas than they could produce individually. Many teachers believe that they collaborate with other teachers and their students collaborate with each other, but mostly this is just cooperation. For a difference between cooperation and collaboration refer to my post ‘Collaboration and cooperation‘.

TLs put the skills they teach into practise when they collaborate with other teachers by providing skills and knowledge to complement the classroom teacher’s contributions (Ray, 2018. p.27). Before commencing the Masters of Education (Teacher Librarianship) my efforts to collaborate with teachers were limited.  I tried to collaborate by integrating language into the Geography unit (China) for Stage 2 and purchasing extra resources for Stage 3 Geography (Japan) and looking up web resources and sending links to teachers about Japan.  Due to past culture in the school, the library was avoided by teachers and under-utilised. As a new teacher to the school, it took a long time for staff to trust me enough to start approaching me to ask for resources. Looking back on that experience with what I know now I could have approached things differently. In the future, I will take it a step further and actively invite teachers to work with me. Next time I am in a situation where the TL and resources are under-utilised I will start following Lewis’ suggestion (2016, p.19) by identifying one teacher to approach to work collaboratively with. We would plan the unit together, integrating my skills of general capabilities (ICT and CCT) and inquiry learning with the teacher’s curriculum knowledge. Responsibilities for assessment would be discussed and a unit evaluation with the teachers and students held to improve the program next time. Finally, I would present with the collaborating teacher at a staff session to showcase the collaboration learning outcomes and evaluation to demonstrate how the TL can help with student outcomes and achievements. If you would like to read more about collaboration Staying Cool in the Library has several great pointers for collaborating with teachers.

How do you collaborate with others?

References:

Johnston, M. P. (2015). Distributed Leadership Theory for Investigating Teacher Librarian Leadership. School Libraries Worldwide, 21(2), 39–57. doi: 10.14265.21.2.003

Lewis, K (2016). The school librarian and leadership: What can be learned? Teacher Librarian, 43 (4), 26-29. Retrieved from http://www.teacherlibrarian.com

Ray, M. (2018). Leadership suits me. Teacher Librarian, 46 (2), 26-29. Retrieved from http://www.teacherlibrarian.com

Staying Cool in the library. (2018, August). 6 tips for teacher/librarian collaboration [blog post]. Retrieved from: https://www.stayingcoolinthelibrary.us/2018/08/6-tips-for-teacherlibrarian.html.

What is a leader?

Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay
There are many people who are leaders, some are good, some are not. I think all leaders have one trait in common – confidence. It is not a trait I readily apply as I am sometimes very shy, especially in new situations. I prefer to sit back and observe people first but I find when working in groups there is always one person who wants to be the boss, wants to take control. This is what I have observed about leaders so far. A leader is somebody who can get people to do things, to apply to their wants and desires.
A good leader:
  • gets the best out of people.
  • is somebody who can create a harmonious interaction where people feel that they can voice their opinions/ideas without worry of being ridiculed.
  • encourages new ideas
  • encourages more efficient methods of doing things
  • ensures people are trained to the best of their capabilities
  • listens to others
  • Provides sincere, specific praise
  • thanks people in the team for their effort
  • is able to make decisions and takes accountability of the decisions.
  • are polite
A bad leader:
  • is sarcastic and belittling
  • gets work done through fear/threats
  • doesn’t listen to ideas – cuts people off, talks over the top of them
  • uses other people’s ideas as their own
  • doesn’t praise effort/work
  • blames other people if things don’t work out
 In my last appointment as a relieving teacher librarian (TL) I was definitely not a leader – very few people communicated with me about the library, I was not invited to any strategic planning meetings (such as literacy) and had very little influence. I think this was affected by ‘being an outsider’ – not known at that school before or knew any of the teachers, temporary appointment and past perceptions of the TL’s role and importance. I did find that towards the end of the year as I developed deeper relationships staff began to use the library more by requesting resources, however, by then my appointment was finishing. I think if I was permanent I could have built on these relationships more and encouraged greater use of the library and the TL.  I am hoping through this course I will become more confident in leadership and be able to apply leadership skills more readily.
How do you feel about your leadership skills?

INF532 Assessment 3 – Part B (a) – an evaluative statement

The life cycle of information has changed and this impacts on the way people interact. Traditionally it was the teacher who was the source of information and knowledge, now it is a user to user production. Information production is increasing (Bawden & Robinson, 2009, p.181), social networks and web 2.0 tools make connecting with other easier. An expanding digital network will increase access to resources, information, and knowledge within the classroom by interacting with others (Thomas & Brown, 2011, p.17).

Information (Silver, 2019a) has changed, it is now produced and shared by a variety of means. This has implications for end users, in how they interpret the information and credit it. These factors will become more of an issue in the future as knowledge creation becomes more socially constructed.

Being able to locate and evaluate a range of innovative online tools and spaces for creative knowledge production and learner engagement are important skills for a connected educator. Skype  (Silver, 2019b) is one learning tool that can be used to introduce authentic learning to students and increase learner engagement. The post also identifies extra Skype sites plus suggestions for other apps that could be used instead of Skype. Twitter, Google Docs and Google classroom also have benefits as a communication tool for students to collaborate.

Another learning space offered by connected educators is the flipped learning approach as detailed here (Silver, 2019, c)  which could prove beneficial in a library setting. This would work particular well for skills such as referencing, how to access and use catalogues and demonstrations on how to use digital tools. Using this model of teaching would then free up library time to hold in-depth discussions and allow for more collaborative or individual work, depending on the learner’s needs.

Online tools that have been used for creative knowledge production include Powtoon and Screencastify, which were evaluated here  (Silver, 2019,d).

Whilst a small suite of new tools has been established there has been exposure to many new types of tools not heard of/used before. For information management Diigo  (Silver, 2019e) has proved a useful cloud-based bookmarking and tagging tool for online sources. However, the full range of Diigo for knowledge networking has not been used, content could be set for public rather than private . Tweetdeck (Silver, 2019f) has been recently utilised for the organisation of information from Tweets, allowing for a greater ease of access to content and categorising of information. New media tools used for content creation include recording from the screen of a mobile and Screencastify and Powtoon. The screen recording on a mobile was utilised to make blog posts about Twitter bookmarks (Silver, 2019g) and give a visual overview of Pinterest (Silver, 2019h). Powtoon and Screencastify were used to create a digital artefact on ‘Using Twitter for beginners to establish a personal learning network’. (Silver, 2019d).

I have as a connected educator also assisted other collegues with their teaching by introducing relevant up-to-date material related to their current subject area being studied in class (Silver, 2019i).

Being able to build on knowledge networking is important to strengthen school-based classroom engagement. At the beginning of the course in my blog on a new culture of learning (Silver,2019j) I stated I felt unconfident in my ability to provide collaborative learning opportunities to my students but hoped with the establishment of my own collaborative network this will change over time. I now feel more confident about introducing knowledge networking strategies to strengthen school-based classroom engagement and learning through intentional and reflective online instructional design. (Silver, 2019b) showed how knowledge networking can be used to strengthen school-based classroom engagement, elements of this such as backchannelling and Skype calls could be utilised in library to give student’s access to authors or experts in the field. Calls can be scheduled from experts of all areas, from authors, scientists and museums. Skype could also be used for virtual field trips and to practise an important information skill of being able to spot fake news.

The digital artefact was created to help educators establish and expand their personal learning networks. Through the use of the digital artefact  (Silver, 2019d) information was able to be presented in a manner that was easily accessible to educators and the examples given allowed them to relate the content within context of their own lives and assisted with knowledge production. Twitter was used to broadcast the artefacts Url on YouTube for more educators to view.

Utilising a PLN  (Silver, 2019k) through Twitter and following blogs from colleagues and prominent educators has helped deliver ideas for professional enhancement including guidelines on developing questioning, connectivity in the classroom and personal knowledge management on curation tools, such as Evernote and Pearltrees. Collective intelligence has been enhanced by practises through the sharing of Tweets within #INF532 related to course material (link Twitter blog, add detail to blog). I am sure my PLN will be able to benefit me in the future and I them.

Through blog posts the learning objects have been able to be met, some in more detail than others.

 

References:

Bawden, D., & Robinson, L. (2009). The dark side of information: overload, anxiety and other paradoxes and pathologies. Journal of Information Science35(2), 180–191. Retrieved from https://journals.sagepub.com/home/jis

Thomas, D., & Brown, J. S. (2011). Arc-of-Life learning. In A new culture of learning: Cultivating the imagination for a world of constant change (pp. 17-33). Lexington, KY: CreateSpace.

Silver, T. (2019a, March 20). New models of information production [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/03/20/new-models-of-information-production/

Silver, T. (2019b, May 21). Supporting the connected learner with Skype [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/21/supporting-the-connected-learner-with-skype/

Silver, T. (2019c, May 22). Flipped learning [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/22/flipped-learning/

Silver, T. (2019d, May 22). Making my digital artefact [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/24/making-my-digital-artefact/

Silver, T. (2019e, May 21). Some curation tools reviewed [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/21/curation/

Silver, T. (2019f, May 25). Tweetdeck [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/24/tweetdeck/

Silver, T. (2019g, May 21). How to save a bookmark on Twitter mobile app [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/21/how-to-save-a-bookmark-on-twitter-mobile-app/

Silver, T. (2019h, May 21). A visual overview of Pinterest [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/21/a-visual-overview-of-pinterest/

Silver, T. (2019i, May 25). Twitter – an update [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/25/using-twitter-an-update/

Silver, T. (2019j, March 20). A new culture of learning? [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/03/20/a-new-culture-of-learning/

Silver, T. (2019k, May 20). What is a PLN? [blog post]. Retrieved from https://thinkspace.csu.edu.au/learningawaits/2019/05/20/what-is-a-pln/