Thursday, April 22, 2010

The Beginning

It is the final week of classes this semester. I look forward to the coming summer semester, hoping that I learn as much in those classes as I did in the last few months. Looking through the portfolio requirements for the SLMS track students, I was surprised at how many pieces of this culminating project that I have completed this semester. In this class, I have learned how to write and create a newsletter for circulation; I have learned to collaborate with others on a group paper looking specifically at library websites; I have successfully created an entire orignal professional development workshop; I have become certified to teach Internet safety... The list goes on. I can see the value in all of these things since they will be directly applicable to what I will be doing in the future. This week we read an interesting and timely article (despite its 1930's publishing date) about education and curriculum changing and adapting to fit the needs of present students. We are fortunate in the SLMS program to have this adaptability built right into the program with its focus on new technology and new ways to use the technology in a school library. Finally, this week we had an exam on copyright issues. What I will take away from our study of this issue is to proceed with caution in this area, and when in doubt, look up any specific situation to be informed of possible infringement. Having a good resource for this will be absolutely vital.
I really did enjoy this class in computer applications. It introduced me to many new things that I would have never used before... My career as a school librarian will definitely benefit from having taken it.

Thursday, April 15, 2010


What is my vision for my future career? My hope is to one day be the librarian in a school that puts the education of the students at the forefront of everyone's thinking. This includes, not only teaching students to pass tests, but to also instill in them life-long skills and characteristics like a love for reading, responsibility, information literacy, and a craving for new knowledge in a variety of formats. Technology integration would be a major part of my program, promoting creativity and collaboration among students and faculty.
During my first year in the school librarian program, I have visited numerous school libraries, and sometimes it seems that there is a large gap between what we learn about in our classes about collaboration and technology integration and what really happens everyday in school libraries... Hopefully, as new school librarians, we will bridge that gap and incorporate the best practices and tools that we now have in our professional toolboxes into our everyday practices in the schools, in hopes of improving the educational experience and learning of today's student in the Information Age.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Week 13 Copyright Police?

This week in Computer Applications we took another look at the issue of copyright in schools, the laws, regulations, and consequences of infringement. As an information specialist, the school library media specialist is in a unique position in the school which allows him/her to monitor a great deal of these issues on a daily basis. Much of the equipment that generates copied material (copiers, printers, computers etc.) are housed in the library, giving the SLMS a good opportunity to monitor, as well as giving the SLMS a great responsibility due to the possible legal ramifications of infringement (to the SLMS personally even). However, much has been said about the school librarian being viewed as a "copyright police," ready to jump all over faculty and students for any slight infraction. This does not generate good working relationships, which is absolultely vital for a collaborative, collegial working environment (which has been shown to increase student learning).
A key in this whole issue is administrative policy and support. If the SLMS is supported by school policy and the administration, copyright problems will become more of an administrative issue, instead of a personal, "look what he is doing" attack by the SLMS. Posting flyers, sending out emails etc. notifying faculty of the school policy is a good start to spread awareness about this important issue without alienating people in the process.