Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Alex - What is a librarian?

Education for 500

The solution to declining reading scores in Tennessee. -- Alex - What is a librarian?

What is happening?

Despite gains in many other areas, students in Tennessee are showing decline in reading scores on standardized tests.

Declining Reading Scores

2015 TCAP scores

Why is this happening?

First, children are reading less, because according to studies, they are using their digital devices to watch videos, and play with apps and games.

Second, studies show that  children are reading less and less for pleasure.
71% (of parents surveyed) agreed that “I wish my child would do more things that did not involve screen time”

What a good librarian can do for you! 

 Encourage reading for pleasure.
 Most librarians I know read for pleasure . When you find an activity that is pleasurable it's often contagious ! Take your classes and take your kids to the library and meet with the librarian . He or she can encourage your student to read for pleasure.

 Provide Readers' Advisory.
 A great librarian can provide readers advisory, which is essentially -- finding a match for your student with books that he or she wants to read for pleasure.

Readers' advisory (sometimes spelled readers advisory or reader's advisory) is a service which involves suggesting fiction and nonfiction titles to a reader through direct or indirect means. This service is a fundamental library service; however, readers' advisory also occurs in commercial contexts such as bookstores. Currently, almost all North American public libraries offer some form of readers' advisory.  

 Provide reading solutions.
Students today need to learn how to read an electronic book. Unfortunately, tablets can often be a real distraction for kids who are suffering from technology addiction. So, a great solution to this problem are black-and-white eInk e-readers.  Encourage your library to adopt a E reader borrowing program.

What parents can do!

Alright now, we have to band together parents!
Put your child's devices away!   And I mean everything --- tablets, phones, and computers.  Why?  So that you can organize a specific time when kids and teens can just read . If you can afford to, invest in an E-reader that is a simple e-reader.

What else ... Read with your child!   When my kids were younger, I read a picture book every single night.  As they got older I read chapter books, a chapter each night . Now my teens probably read faster than I do, and they get impatient with my pace, so we turn it into a competition.  We decide on the novel that we are going to read and we try to keep up with one another so we can discuss the book throughout.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Dog Days of Summer Reading

The phrase "dog days of summer"
Describes when Canis Major is highest in the sky
July 3 to Aug. 11

It is hot in Tennessee!

 The next two days the weatherperson has called for 105 heat index and actual temperatures right at 100 degrees . Due to the high temperatures my family and I are in the house with the blinds closed in the air-conditioning. Thank goodness for air conditioning! And thank goodness for a good book!

 Here are a few reading lists for this summer . 

Nancy Pearl recommends -

 Bill Gates idea of the summer reading list -

Oprah's list - 

Webb Faculty Reads   

Teaching as a Subversive Activity

 Inquiry and Innovation

 I Read It, but I Don't Get It

 In Defense of a Liberal Education

 End of Education

 Dumbing Us Down


 The Gentle Scholar

Monday, July 13, 2015

A big week!

First the much anticipated "Go Set A  Watchman" by Harper Lee 

Release July 14, 2015

I have read a number of reviews on the novel.  Some are quite controversial and some say that there are many red flags about the timing of the release.

New York Times review
WSJ's Sam Sacks interview on MSNBC
Guardian article

Second, I am really curious about Amazon Prime Day! 

July 15, 2015

What is it? I have no idea!
All I know is that it is supposed to be the best thing since (or maybe better than) Black Friday!  So, I have filled my Amazon cart to overflowing just waiting for the day to get here, and for some amazing announcement for all loyal prime members!

#primeliving  ( hashtag for photo contest)

Third, I am attending the annual KASL summer refresher in Paducah, Kentucky!

July 13 & 14, 2015

This year, unfortunately, I had conflicts with the dates of the Tennessee TASL summer professional development, but I still wanted to get some professional development in this summer.  The KASL Kentucky summer refresher was a great option .

Tonight I went on a Historical tour of downtown Paducah Kentucky to see the flood wall murals .   After the tour I went to a small Mexican restaurant called Tribeca for an appetizer & apps gathering .

 Tomorrow is a full schedule with all kinds of workshops and a keynote speech from Kentucky librarian, Terri Grief, immediate past AASL president.

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Technology useful or just a distraction?

Using New Tools

Kindle Fire
I attended a conference several years ago where there  was a gadget "petting zoo".  Since then, I like to experiment with new technologies in the library.  This summer, I have integrated the Kindle Fire and Fire TV into my read aloud time.  Much like an IPad with Apple TV, you can mirror the Kindle tablet.  

Today's read-aloud with Technology
Fire TV
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

Fire TV /Kindle Fire Screen Mirror



Experimenting  with new technology tools

We are trying out the Amazon Echo.  
More information to come, on this tool.

I noticed that Gwyneth Jones, The Daring Librarian, has an Amazon Echo in her library as well.  Here she writes about the tool on her blog - 
There's an Echo in My Library!

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Wednesday's in July

The Webb School Library will be open Wednesdays in July

to both the Webb and Bell Buckle Community

July 1, 2015 / July 8, 2015 / July 15, 2015 / July 22, 2015 - 9 am – 3 pm 
[Children’s Story time 10:30 am]

July 29, 2015  Hours 9 am – 12 noon
[Children’s Back-to School Party 9:30 am -11:00 am]

This week's read-aloud books

  • Wacky Wednesday by Dr. Seuss as Theo. LeSieg Illus. by George Booth
  • Olivia by Ian Falconer 

Books for all ages available!
Ask about our honor collection of a thousand-plus books with no due dates!
Webb students can work on their summer reading responses.