Category Archives: Uncategorized

Library Displays: An Awesome Resource

Library displays are the best way for our kids to discover new books.  The books on the shelves are for the kids who already know what they want.  We should never assume that our kids can figure it out on their own- even if they don’t want our help.  Ever notice how fast you have to refill the display books? There’s an excellent reason for that.

I love this Padlet, made by Jennifer LaGarde (Library Girl). We need to all add to it, stat. 🙂

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Wreaths Change the Entire Look of My House: A Lesson for Our Libraries

I am blown away by how much of an impact a wreath can make.

Over the weekend, I taught myself how to make Deco Mesh Wreaths.  I first saw them at a craft fair, and loved the look.  I didn’t love the kitschy embellishments that most crafters seem to add.  For instance, a Halloween wreath with a big hat in the middle and witch legs dangling from it.  I want to class up my front door, and I just don’t think that does it.  Totally my opinion.

Here’s the Halloween wreath I made…

And the Thanksgiving one that I will put up next month!

Really, decorating of any kind just adds warmth, comfort, and a sense of familiarity.  That’s why I never hesitate to decorate in the library.  I don’t worry about offending anyone and I try to be inclusive of all. I just can’t stress enough the difference it makes to the kids.  Here’s what Sue and I did for Halloween:

Your typical window clings…

These guys kind of remind me of Marie Laveau’s House of Voodoo:

I love our book display.  The ghosts, especially.

This guy’s eyes flash red when he detects motion, which is actually terrifying.

These are removable, but I kind of like them…

The pumpkin lights just catch your eye immediately.

The best part is that decorating really gives the kids something to talk to you about.  It’s a natural icebreaker.  And, it’s just a little way you can show your students that you care about them.

Have a great Halloween!

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A Great Way to Get Kids Thinking about Plagiarism

Oh Hi Becky Farmville Tweet Goes Viral – Business Insider

Here’s What Happens When Your Joke Goes Massively Viral On Twitter

Caroline Moss

Jul. 15, 2014, 10:57 AM 798,639 40

via Oh Hi Becky Farmville Tweet Goes Viral – Business Insider

Man, I wish Scott hadn’t used the F word in his original tweet.  However, I think that we can still use this as a really relevant case study on plagiarism (with a little, um, censorship).

The gist is this: a random guy tweets something funny.  Other people steal his tweet and repost it as though it were their own.  Even famous people.  One comedian even accuses Scott of plagiarizing him.

Scott’s thoughts on the experience are fascinating- I loved that he said that he doesn’t understand how people can read something, relate to it, and then say “yup, that’s mine now,” without giving one thought to how it effects the person who created it.

I think that this example is so much easier for kids to “get” than what we’ve used in the past.  I love it.  It’s mine now — with proper attribution, of course. 🙂

 

 

BEA!!!

Wow. Having a blast at BEA. Right now, I’m sitting in line (yup- popped a squat on the floor) to meet Jennifer Niven. Already met David Levithan, Ransom Riggs, and Gayle Forman. It is a good day. 

Celebrate National Library Week on Twitter!

There are two Twitter celebrations that I know of so far…

#ilovemylibrary – Tweet about how awesome your library is all week!

#librarymade – Tweet things that have been made in the library for a chance to win a $100 gift card from ALA!

If you hear of any others, please let me know!  Let’s be as LOUD as possible this week!

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BBC News – Harper Lee to publish Mockingbird ‘sequel’

BBC News – Harper Lee to publish Mockingbird ‘sequel’.

via BBC News – Harper Lee to publish Mockingbird ‘sequel’.

Teaching Research in Middle School and High School

I always try to get into classes when they are starting some sort of research project for the first time.  I talk about Boolean searching, citing sources (even for pictures), and our databases.  The first few times I did this (a few years ago), I explained the databases and then I could see the kids were like, “yeah whatever.”  They used Google for their research while I cringed.

I needed to spice it up.  So, I added the Tree Octopus and the horrible MLK site, and wow did that work.  If you don’t know, you can google Tree Octopus, and a very credible-looking site will come up.  If you google Martin Luther King, the first site that comes up after wikipedia is one created by a white supremacist group.  These actually got them thinking about the fact that I’m not lying when I tell them that you can’t believe everything you read on the internet.

Sometimes, I even pull up this site, and say, “See! Any yahoo with a computer can make a website!”

Today, I found another great resource- one that I think will hit my kids even harder.  These are two pictures posted by ABC for an expose 20/20 did on counterfeit merchandise.  The news feature was pretty interesting- I highly recommend checking it out.  I love this- one of the websites in the picture is the real one, and one is a fake…

In both cases, the one on the right is the fake.

How great are these examples for teaching kids to use databases?  It really shows that even when you are diligent about using good sources, you really can’t trust google searching for academic research.