Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Linworth webinars

Library Services is coordinating two Linworth webinars this semester for any librarians who would like to attend. Each webinar counts as 1 hour of CPE credit.

If you're interested, please register by Friday, October 7.

Using Digital Tools to Support Inquiry-Based Learning
with Pam Berger

Tuesday, November 8, 2011 3:00-4:00 PM, PDC Room 216
Technology has never been easier or more accessible. Now is the time to learn how to harness its power to support learning! Explore some of the newest and the best Web 2.0 tools that engage and motivate students, support inquiry learning, and scaffold thinking skills. Learn which tools best serve to support the thinking skills at each phase of the inquiry process.

Register here

Get in the Game: Developing a Plan for Choosing Technologies to Support Student Learning Through Your Library Program
with Buffy Hamilton

Tuesday, November 15, 2011 3:00-4:00 PM, PDC Room 216
Want to know how to choose the right tech solutions for your library? This webinar explores best practices for developing a game plan for your technology integration projects, and considers inquiry, instructional design, and participatory learning as contexts for thoughtful, collaborative decision making in conjunction with classroom teachers to choose technologies that best support student learning.

Register here

Friday, September 23, 2011

Friday FYI's

  • Your TitleWise Collection Analysis has been updated so if you are ordering from Follett,you should be able to see copies you own.
  • We purchased iMovie (as promised) and Explain Everything. for your iPads. Explain Everything is a design tool that lets you annotate, animate and narrate presentations. Check out the link!
  • You will be receiving REDEEM codes in the mail soon for these 2 apps. Remember to go to iTunes and then click REDEEM so you don't pay for them.
  • In the Digital Library, 6th grade students now have access to middle school books. YAY!
  • Did we mention Kindle format is here NOW! Have you tried it yet?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Spread the word! Kindle format is available in the Mesquite ISD Digital Library! Let your Kindle owners know they can now checkout our digital ebooks and have them delivered to their Kindle.

Don't have a Kindle but have the Kindle app? This works too and lets users experience all the great features that Kindle has to offer.

Try it for yourself. Mary and I both just downloaded a book from our iPad to our Kindle app. After checking out the Kindle book it directed us to login to our Amazon account and then delivered the book to our app. Easy!

Let me know if you have questions!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Flash on the iPad

At our iPad training Monica teased us with how to get flash on our iPads and then ran out of time! I asked her about it and she sent a list of apps that may work. According to Monica, "While the iPad does not officially support any Flash, the iPad apps below are designed to play Flash content on the iPad. None of the iPad apps listed below guarantees the content you want will play, but all are worth exploring."

I loaded the free iSwifter and ran a test from a YouTube flash test and it worked fine. It's definitely worth a try!
Apps to try:


Encyclopedia Britannica sent us some promotional materials for our newest database, Image Quest. You should be receiving posters, monitor ads, and flyers. Image Quest has over 1.5 million rights-cleared images from over 40 of the best collections in the world. Dorling Kindersley, Getty, National Geographic are a few. Teachers can use the images in their lesson plans and classroom activities while students can use these in products. Below is an image I found after typing in learning.

Photo credit:LWA/Dann Tardif / Blend / Learning Pictures / Universal Images Group

Friday, September 16, 2011

Are you giving yourself credit?

At the beginning of the year, we talked about how many of you weren't submitting statistics for things that you deemed an ordinary part of your job. 

We just finished up Open House for this year. This is one of those ordinary parts of your job. You do it every year. In fact, you are required to be there. You're not required to do anything but hang out in the library and visit with any parents and students who happen to come in.

Some of you, though, use Open House as a golden opportunity to showcase the library and design ways to get people in. You go beyond what is required to get people into the library.

What did you do during Open House this year to encourage people to stop in and visit the library? 

...Demonstrate the Digital Library or other library resources? 

...Offer a story time or activities for toddlers while parents met with their older siblings' teachers? 

...Check out books to parents?

...Pass out a flyer advertising the services you can provide?

...Display a video of students learning in the library?

If you took the opportunity to promote what you do in the library at Open House, you need to give yourself credit - because it's not required and you have gone above and beyond.

Count what you did as 1 Special Event and describe what you did that was a step above the norm. You deserve it!

Photo citation: Superman.

Elementary only: Tejas Star Book Award

Elementary librarians who serve Spanish speaking students may want to consider having those students participate in the Tejas Star Book Award program. This program is similar to the Bluebonnet program in that participants who read three (3) books from the list are eligible to vote for their favorite. This list, however, features books that are published originally in Spanish or in full Spanish/English bilingual format. More details about the program can be found on the Region 1 ESC web site.

Even if you choose not to participate in the reading program, this list is a great resource for you to use when purchasing Spanish and bilingual books. The web site also has lists from years past that you might want to use for collection development purposes.

2011-2012 Tejas Star Book Award List

Alvarez, Julia, and Ruddy Núñez (Illus.). 2009. El mejor regalo del mundo: la leyenda de La Vieja Belén = The Best Gift of All: The Legend of La Vieja Belén. Miami, Fla: Alfaguara.

Argueta, Jorge,  and Fernando Vilela (Illus.). 2010. Arroz con leche: un poema para cocinar = Rice Pudding: A Cooking Poem. Toronto: Groundwood Books.

Brown, Monica, and Joe Cepeda (Illus.). 2010. Side by Side: The Story of Dolores Huerta and César Chávez = Lado a lado: la historia de Dolores Huerta y César Chávez. New York: Rayo.

Contreras, Kathleen, and Margaret Lindmark (Illus.). 2009. Braids = Trencitas. New York: Lectorum.

Colato Laínez, René, and Joe Cepeda (Illus.). 2010. From North to South = Del Norte al Sur. San Francisco, Calif: Children's Book Press.

Garza, Xavier. 2010. Kid Cyclone Fights the Devil and Other Stories = Kid Ciclon se enfrenta a El Diablo y otras historias. Houston: Piñata Books.

Hayes, Joe, and Mauricio Trenard Sayago (Illus.). 2008. Dance, Nana, Dance = Baila, Nana, baila : Cuban Folktales in English and Spanish. El Paso, TX: Cinco Puntos Press.

Lacámara, Laura, and Yuyi Morales (Illus.). 2010. Floating on Mama's Song = Flotando con la canción de mamá. New York: Katherine Tegen Books.

Lachtman, Ofelia Dumas, and Alex Pardo DeLange (Illus.). 2011. Pepita and the Bully = Pepita y la peleonera. Houston, Tex: Piñata Books.

Luna, James, and Laura Lacámara (Illus.). 2010. The Runaway Piggy = El cochinito fugitivo. Houston, Tex: Piñata Books.

Martínez, Rueben, and Raúl Colón (Illus.). 2010. Once Upon a Time: Traditional Latin American tales = Había una vez: cuentos tradicionales latinoamericanos. New York, NY: Rayo.

Mora, Pat, and John Parra (Illus.). 2009. Gracias = Thanks. New York: Lee & Low Books.

Price, Mara, and Lisa Fields (Illus.). 2010. Grandma's Chocolate = El chocolate de abuelita. Houston, Tex: Piñata Books. 

Saenz, Benjamin Alire, and Geronimo García (Illus.). 2009. The Dog Who Loved Tortillas = La perrita que le encantaban las tortillas. El Paso, Tex: Cinco Puntos Press.

Zepeda, Gwendolyn, and Pablo Torrecilla (Illus.). 2011. I Kick the Ball = Pateo el balón. Houston, Tex: Piñata Books.

I make House Calls!

One of the librarians asked Mary if I made "house calls".

I do!

If you find yourself asking:
  • How do I use Overdrive on the iPad?
  • What exactly is Dropbox?
  • How can I help my students use the digital library?
  • How can I stop the page creep on my Workflows reports?
  • How do I use that new image database?
Any technology question???

I'll make a house call! Please schedule my time to visit with you about any technology questions you have. Fill out this brief form and we'll get an appt set up for YOU!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Author Visit Info

Authors (or other guest speakers) who will be supervised by the librarian or another staff member during their visit will NOT need to complete a background check ahead of time. They will, however, need to check in at the office with a driver's license to receive a name tag upon arrival.

Click here for additional information from our Policies and Procedures wiki about hosting an author visit.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

ILL and the Learning Center

You may be receiving ILL requests from teachers at the Learning Center. I heard specifically from Christi Elkins, the CAPE Behavioral Specialist. Since they have no library, they need books! I explained you would be happy to share when possible. Since they do not have an ILL username, just check out the items to the person requesting and route through tub system as you would with normal ILL's. Thanks for all you do for your campus and the district!

Monday, September 12, 2011

Book orders due October 28

Book orders may be sent to Library Services at any time between now and October 28, 2011. The sooner you send in your orders, the sooner you will get your new materials!

Gail will be emailing you the amount that you have left to spend in your 11-12 budget. Remember, these funds are to be spent on hardcover books and select AV materials.

NOTE: The preferred format for reference materials and media is digital. You will be asked to provide a rationale regarding any orders submitted that include print reference, DVDs or other media.

If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to contact Gail or Mary.

Happy spending!

Photo citation: A small wedding gift.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Friday Food for Thought

The article below is by David Allen, author of Getting Things Done. You may remember that one of our groups did a book study on his book a couple of years ago.

There is one organization that never has fires and crises—the fire department. Think about it.
They are constantly being interrupted from getting their work done. They have to clean, polish, maintain, train, fill out forms, hire, communicate, order toilet paper, cook lunch, feed the dog, give speeches, and maintain a happy face. Suddenly a bell rings and everything gets overturned. And the vast majority of these interruptions are false alarms!
They accept and organize for this. I was in Los Angeles many years ago when a large part of the city was on fire. On the news I didn't see one fire company just throwing the hoses willy-nilly back on the truck to get to the next one. It's just a neat, methodical procedure, implemented with consistency and integrity, taking into account the realities of the situation and the resources at hand.

Is there a lesson here? How long are people going to complain about continual surprises and interruptions, especially the ones that are inherently natural to the business and value we are trying to add? And, if there were never any surprises, most of us would be bored stupid in a few days; and the competition would have probably eaten our lunch already with purely bureaucratic efficiency.
Your ability to deal with surprise, elegantly and proactively, is your personal and organizational competitive edge. You just need to ensure that your systems can keep things under control from any angle, with appropriate distinctions between what's movable and what's not. Then turning on a dime is an effortless spin instead of a clumsy crash and burn.

The school librarian's day is full of surprises and interruptions. Are you organized in a way that allows you to deal with them "elegantly and productively"?

Photo citation: Fire. http://www.flickr.com/photos/ebolagrande/1342784648/

Circulation Computers

We were able to change the circulation computer password so that I could create a barcode for you to use. The password is the same as before except the letters are all CAPS. The login name didn't change. (xxxlibrary) You will be receiving a barcode in the mail that you can begin using immediately.

To use the barcode:
  • Start computer
  • Press ctrl-alt-delete
  • Scan the card for the password (your username should already be listed)
If you need to login before getting your barcode, just be sure to use all caps.

I heard from some of you that the Workflows barcode doesn't work due to the automatic return. If you will type the username and just use the barcode for the password, it will work.

Let me know if you have questions. :-)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Sept 13-iPad Training

Next Tuesday we will meet at the PDC Leadership room for iPad Training! Plan to begin at 12:30 and bring your iPad! ;-)

The app store is now charging a price for Go Sky Watch. If you didn't get it for free, let me know and I can purchase it for you to redeem at the iTunes store. Just let me know immediately so I can get you the code for download! There is a Toy Story 3 iphone app that is still free if you are looking for that.

Please make sure you have downloaded the other apps needed at the training. If you have any questions about how to download or redeem apps--call me! I would love to help!

Apps for iPad Training

Usage Stats

I wanted to let you know that your usage stats are still being run the first day of each month. You will find these in your Workflows finished reports.

You may have noticed that we didn't send these to your principal. We are working on reporting the people and not the stuff. Mary will send your principals the numbers of students/classes you worked with instead of the number of items you circulated.

We do feel the usage report has valuable information for you so we will continue to run it monthly.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Why do you read?

Saw this today on the Blue Skunk Blog and wanted to share it with all my book-loving friends...

I Read by Richard Peck

I read because one
 life isn’t enough, and 
in the pages of a book I can be anybody;

I read because the 
words that build 
the story become mine, 
to build my life;

I read not for happy
 endings but for new
 beginnings; I’m just
 beginning myself, and 
I wouldn’t mind a map;

I read because I have
 friends who don’t, and
 young though they are,
 they’re beginning to
 run out of material;

I read because every
 journey begins at 
the library, and it’s
 time for me to start 

I read because one
 of these days I’m going
 to get out of this
 town, and I’m going to
 go everywhere and meet
 everyone, and I want
 to be ready.

–Richard Peck, author
, Zihuatanejo, Mexico, 

I read for lots of reasons, but I think I mostly read because as Peck says, "one life isn't enough." I love experiencing other places and times; being privy to other people's thoughts and feelings; having experiences that aren't available to me in my daily life.

Why do you read? Leave your thoughts in the comments.

Photo attribution: Potter Summer by Daryl Marquardt

Encyclopedia Britannica is Back!!

We are going to be able to offer the Encyclopedia Britannica databases that we had through the state last year. The databases include The Learning Zone, Encyclopedia Britannica for elementary, middle and high schools as well as Enciclopedia Juvenil, a Spanish encyclopedia. We are also adding Image Quest, the image database that many of you tested during a trial offer in the Spring. Click the link to see Image Quest now!
Please access these new resources through our Virtual Library until we can get them added to your resource pages.