Thursday, February 26, 2015

145 Years

Preservation of historical records of the South's oldest continuously operating boarding school.

Our school is just five years away from its Sesquicentennial!
We are so happy to welcome representatives from the TSLA and Secretary of State Tre Hargett.  They are stopping by to present a grant to assist with the preservation, processing and storage of historical records.  The $2,000 local archives development grant will fund archival supplies and equipment.

Checkout the Archives Website


I try to believe the stories, but the librarian in me insists that I verify the oral history with documentation.  The story goes ... The Webb School Honor Code directly influences the Princeton Honor Code

So, I found this quote in a 2003 Princeton University Library Chronicle article -

"Finally, in the autumn of 1892, at least two undergraduates from a small preparatory school, the Webb School in Bell Buckle, Tennessee, began to build the movement that the Princetonian had called for. Charles Ottley (Class of 1893) and James Brodnax (Class of 1894) had lived under an honor code established by the school’s founder, Sawney Webb "(Tenner, 2003)

Then spotted these two in the 1889 role book here at Webb

  • Charles Ottley – Webb 1889, Princeton 1893 
  • James “Mac” Brodnax – Webb 1889, Princeton 1894
The Webb School Honor Code
The Princeton University Honor Code

Tenner, Edward. “The Honor Code through Wilson’s spectacles” Princeton University Library Chronicle 64:3 (Spring 2003), 425-44.
Reeder , M. (2003). Honor system - Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library Princeton University. Retrieved from

We also found in the archives at Webb, valuable biographical, and photographic documents for at least Charles Ottley, who unfortunately died at a very young age.

Therefore, it seems we do have claim to influence at Princeton.

Thursday, February 12, 2015

Raspberry Pi

So what's the big deal about Raspberry Pi?

Well, it's a whole computer that is smaller in length and width than an index card.
It also has several USB ports, which is more than most tablets.  And, it only cost $35.00 which makes it accessible to those who are struggling with finances.

Monday, February 09, 2015

The Webb School Library is at home in Bell Buckle, Tennessee

Embracing Our Community

The Webb School Library is at home in the beautiful, rural, artisan community of Bell Buckle, Tennessee.

Rural Bell Buckle is a beautiful place with beautiful people!  The Webb School Library and Archives wants to be more a part of this community and we have several events planned to welcome those in the Webb and the Bell Buckle Community to the Library.

Book Fair

March 24-27, 2015
All proceeds will go to the community children's section of the Library.

Summer Library Days

In July, we will have once-a-week community days along with a read-aloud storytime for children.  Additionally, we would like to host a book-release event for Harper Lee's  forthcoming novel “Go Set a Watchman.”

Supporting the Arts

We are big fans of our local artists and hope to find new ways to collaborate with our Bell Buckle artists' community.

We cannot say enough about our beloved Tennessee Poet Laureate - Maggi Vaughn [Margaret Britton Vaughn ]
We love to hear all her stories, but our favorite is about her days as Library Assistant in The Webb School Library.

We are so fortunate to have three of Russ Faxon's sculptures in our Library.  We are also delighted to have such a consummate artist living right here in Bell Buckle

There are many other artists in town.  Checkout the Bell Buckle Arts Council on

Local Informational Videos

Close to Home but a World Away -
Phillip's General Store -

Primary Research for the Senior Project

The Next Step in the Senior Project

Research Methodology [Primary Research - Survey, Interview, Test, Experiment, Case Study, Contrast/Comparison, Project Journal, Internship]

Findings/Data/Results  [explanation of results includes the use of Tables, Photos, and Maps]

Ideas for Primary Research

  • Following Twitter Feeds or Blogs - journaling your impressions
  • Starting a Twitter Feed or blog about your topic
  • Keeping a research journal
  • Interview an Expert/Professional face to face, Skype, OR via email
  • Survey a group
  • Statistical survey
  • Video Journal an experience
  • Experiment
  • Contrast/Comparison
  • Internship
  • Shadow an expert [in person or online]
  • Questionnaires

3 examples of primary research from last year:

  • Student to conducted primary research by interviewing NCAA officials and coaches through e-mail
  • Student found research about how visuals in advertising provoked a neurological response. She conducted an experiment with a sample of students, using product art with textual clues removed. 
  • Student researched the overall response to and feasibility of e-texts. He surveyed parents, students, and faculty about this change. He also conducted interviews with people at similar schools about their move to electronic textbooks. 

Wednesday, February 04, 2015

Attention span of only 8 seconds?

Library Marketing

As a Library Director, I try to stay on top of marketing news and techniques.  The past five years my marketing efforts have been consumed with social media.  We have maintained a library Facebook since 2007, and Twitter since 2009.  Last year we felt the need to embrace Pinterest and now in 2015, Instagram.  This marketing article captured my attention because of the ridiculous claim that Millennials have an EIGHT second attention span.  The article goes on to describe "snackable" content marketing.  The author suggests using Instagram and Snapchat for marketing.  Meanwhile, I am still stuck on the "8-second" attention span.
There are benefits and snags with these last two social media forms, and I felt at this time there are too many snags with Snapchat to use in any professional way.

Some things to  read

What does this mean for Library Teaching and Learning

One of my big goals as a Teacher-Librarian is to meet students where they are.  This can be a challenge as our lives have meshed between a physical and digital world.  Some of the social media like Facebook had a long shelf-life.  However, now I feel that students more and more are trying to "run" from adults online rather than trying to interact with adults.  I don't mean like "stranger danger" running, but more like hiding online content from parents and other authority figures.  There is a constant moving from one platform to the next.  When a student sees an adult from their physical world get into their digital world, they take off running to a new social media.  This year alone, I have seen the rise and fall of possibly fifteen different social media platforms among teens and young adults.   Platforms like Kik, YikYak, Snapchat, AskFM, Whisper, ooVoo, etc.  Most of these platforms are part of a new class of  "temporary" social media. The answer on many school campuses is the banning of social media altogether.  I disagree with banning the access to social media and I am fortunate to be at a school where social media is available to students.

My biggest dilemma right now is that I just want to communicate effectively with my students.
However, I have two problems
1.) I do not know exactly where they are because of the constantly changing social media landscape
2.) Sometimes I cannot get my message across in 140 characters or less.

Where is the evidence about attention span

I have yet to get to the bottom of the "8-second" attention span.  Stay tuned for the research.

Monday, February 02, 2015

Journalistic questioning

One of my favorite reading/research strategies to teach students is the journalistic questioning method.  I discovered a worksheet years ago on the Read Write Think website that I still use today.  The "Gist" worksheet allows students to make notes on a book or article, then they put the original source away and write from their notes.  This also helps students avoid plagiarism.

The strategy includes the 5Ws and H
Who, What, When, Where, Why and How

The Gist -
Investigate the Three Little Pigs -
Blog post about creating your own questions

Paper Kick Start Questions for Seniors
  • WHAT  - What is my paper about?  What are the key points?
  • WHY- Why am I writing about this? Why should anyone care?
  • WHO - Who are the researchers in the field?  Who am I writing about? 
  • WHERE - Where does the research take place?  Is there a prominent location in the research?
  • WHEN - When does the research take place?  What dates are significant?
  • HOW - How was the research conducted