from the Director's Desk

Musings about school library media and instructional technology programs from NCDPI's Instructional Technology Divison.  Subscribe to our RSS Feed.

Monday, February 05, 2007

ECU Librarian-to-Librarian Networking Conference

Saturday I was at the East Carolina University Librarian to Librarian Networking Conference. It's a charming one-day conference held in Joyner Library's Teaching Resources Center (TRC), where the general session is held in the story area, break-out sessions in library conference rooms, and lunch served among the stacks. Actually, several of us from Instructional Technology were there facilitating sessions. You see, the format for this conference is different. We weren't presenters as such; we were facilitators who provided a few minutes of information and then opened the remainder of the session for discussion, allowing the conversation to range widely based on the needs and interests of the participants.

My two topics were IMPACT and a general session of Ask Frances. I think--I hope!--the discussions were valuable. What did we talk about? Well, in the IMPACT session, the focus was mainly on scheduling: how do you schedule collaborative planning without media assistants or when you are assumed to be part of the planning block. The Ask Frances session involved discussions about reading, particularly Accelerated Reader; the state of school library collections; whether to allow students to use Google; and the future of school libraries.

One of the most interesting pieces of information shared in that session was by Cheryl Reddish, a professor at NCCU Department of Library and Information Sciences. She said that one of her students was particularly distressed by the condition of her book collection; its average age was 1964! So she decided to issue the Yellow Dot Challenge. All the books that needed to be weeded from the collection were tagged with large yellow dots and the children, the PTO, and the community were challenged to buy a book to replace one of the yellow dotted ones. The media coordinator had a list of suitable books that could be ordered as replacements with its appropriate price, and contributors were encouraged to choose the book from the list that would replace its older counterpart. There was even a large thermometer (similar to the United Way gauges) on the front yard of the school! According to Cheryl, within three months the face of that collection had changed.

Just one of the many good ideas that came from that very special Librarian to Librarian Networking Conference!


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