start spreading the news ...
Sorry for the cheesy blog post title. But to me this topic really is about spreading the news and finding useful ways to do that. On another note ... I finished this whole post and didn't publish it right away. When I came back to post it, it hadn't saved even when I clicked save. So here I go again! Note to self: post it right way before you lose it!
Starting in a new position this week was about getting to know the staff. I want to tune into the needs of the school and learn from the staff what they could use in terms of support form a librarian. After getting to know the staff and school I want them to have an idea what my role could be and what my background is. I think it is extremely important to advocate for yourself and what you can do to work with other classes and teachers. I came across a great graphic from a teacher librarian's blog which outlines what I hope to be able to offer teachers. I would love to potentially create my own version of this for the staff so they know what I could be doing with them (hmmm maybe a potential final vision project idea).
I know many school libraries have an area for professional resources that usually have many great ideas or things to try. At my last school the library was located pretty far from my classroom. When I was planning or working with my partner teacher it was rare for us to go to the library and pull out these resources for reference. What would have been a lot more useful is an online portfolio of resources that are easy to access electronically. I realize there may be some useful books that cannot be accessed online but maybe a photo and description of the book could go online for teachers to see. This could be created on a simple online google document or even using a website like Scoop It (which I just learned about from a fellow Teacher Librarian in her blog post). I also found another version of a similar idea called 'The Current'. It is an open publishing site or forum for 'the sharing of resources and stories about what we as educators are observing, doing and reflecting upon related to connecting learning and teaching.' The one thing I like about it as that you can collect resources you have found but can also publish original content to share what you have been doing in your space as well.
This is a very simple idea yet could be one of the most effective. When you learn about a new resource, technology or idea simply email it out to your staff. I feel that reading one email with an idea to check out it is a lot more manageable then receiving a huge overwhelming list to read and evaluate. I came across this interesting podcast after reading this blog post from a teacher librarian diploma classmate. I have been really into podcasts for about a year now, I would listen to them often when I lived in Bangkok when I walked to and from work. It was so great to read Karla's post and hear about so many different education related podcasts. I immediately downloaded and listened to one from the 'Cult of Pedagogy' about makerspaces, as I kept meaning to do more research on what a makerspace was but not finding the time. I can now email that podcast out the staff at my new school as an interesting listen. I know not every person may listen to podcasts or be interested but if even one or two staff members listen and want to work with you based on a resource you found then it was worth the email.
While TOCing at an elementary school here in Victoria I was telling a teacher about my knowledge of word inquiry and the impact I have seen it has on literacy in elementary schools. That teacher suggested I come to their school on a professional development day and share more about it with the staff. What a great idea! Writing a short proposal of what you want to present on and talking with the principal would be easy to do. It could be something as simple as 'I need 30 minutes to show the staff this new online planning document I created' or 'I would like to set up a maker space and have the staff engage in learning more about how we can use this idea in our school'.
Here are two more websites with ideas for sharing professional strategies and information about your library.
1. This website has a few great ideas, such as bringing a cart of resources TO a grade level team to plan, starting an adult book club and running an adult makerspace challenge.
2. Here you can find some short simple ways to advocate and share from librarians from Australia, New Zealand and the UK.
While searching this topic I found more great info related to my last blog post. Here are the link to this bonus info!
Tweeting for beginners and how to use it in an educational setting: https://www.bubbleupclassroom.org/home/its-never-too-late-to-tweet
More ideas for networking with fellow teacher librarians: https://www.bubbleupclassroom.org/home/bubbleup-take5-connecting-with-other-school-librarians
Germaine, K. (2018). My Personal Learning Network. [online] Reflections of New Teacher Librarian. Available at: https://kargermaine.blogspot.com/2018/10/my-personal-learning-network.html [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].
Google+ Communities. (2018). inTLchat: Librarians without borders. [online] Available at: https://plus.google.com/communities/118360039129531674592 [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].
Gonzalez, J. (2018). What is the Point of a Makerspace?. [podcast] Cult of Pedagogy. Available at: https://www.cultofpedagogy.com/makerspace/ [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].
Hazlin, G. (2018). BubbleUp Take5: Connecting with Other School Librarians. [online] BubbleUp Classroom. Available at: https://www.bubbleupclassroom.org/home/bubbleup-take5-connecting-with-other-school-librarians [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].
Lindskog, K. (2018). Outreach Strategies for Promoting School Libraries. [online] EBSCOpost Blog. Available at: https://www.ebsco.com/blog/article/outreach-strategies-for-promoting-school-libraries [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].
Thornblad, C. (2018). It's Never too Late to Tweet. [online] BubbleUp Classroom. Available at: https://www.bubbleupclassroom.org/home/its-never-too-late-to-tweet [Accessed 19 Oct. 2018].