The Unquiet Library Annual Report 2011, Part 1

I’m happy to share with you the first part of my annual library report that I created in Microsoft Word.  Each media center in our district is mandated to submit an annual report; in the past, we shared program highlights related to each of the four roles under Information Power, but I’m excited that we have transitioned to the five roles from Empowering Learners for this year’s report.

I always struggle with finding a balance in the information and data I include as I don’t want to have so much that it overwhelms a reader—it is easy to go overboard on charts/graphs/quotes—but of the four annual reports I’ve written, I think I’m happiest with this year’s edition. I think I’ve improved the narratives and organization this year as well as the use of graphics and media; I also love the Word template I selected to create the report because it looks clean and streamlined yet professional. Each year I try to incorporate a new element into my reports, and this year, I thought it would be fun to incorporate QR codes linking to specific web resources or videos related to a section of the annual report.  In addition, I love the addition of the teacher quote sidebars into this year’s annual report—these “impact” statements were very humbling to read, and I am so grateful to work with colleagues who let me share the joy the joy of teaching and learning with them and their students.  A heartfelt thank you to my faculty who were able to share such powerful statements for inclusion in this year’s annual report.

While writing the annual report is truly a labor of love and quite time intensive for me, I also find it a valuable reflective exercise as it helps me to really connect dots of patterns I’ve observed over the last year, consider what didn’t work as planned and how to approach those challenges in the future, and to see the successes of the program that are so easy to overlook when you’re in the throes of daily library life.  The process also helps me start to crystallize ideas that have been simmering and take initial steps toward writing next year’s program goals/themes for the upcoming year.

I’ll be creating the annual report and video (in the same vein as last year’s) later this week, so look for a followup post here in which I’ll share the multimedia elements of the library annual report!

Nurturing Transliteracy with Vook

Inspiration has arrived this afternoon via friend and colleague Mark Moran who Tweeted about his newly minted Vook on marathon running.  What is Vook?

“A vook is a new innovation in reading that blends a well-written book, high-quality video and the power of the Internet into a single, complete story. You can read your book, watch videos that enhance the story and connect with authors and your friends through social media all on one screen, without switching between platforms.

Vooks are available in two formats: As a web-based application you can read on your computer and an application for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad for reading on the go. With the web-based application you don’t have to download programs or install software. Just open your favorite browser and start reading and watching in an exciting new way. You can also download and install the mobile applications through the Apple iTunes store and sync them with your Apple mobile device.”

Consider the possibilities for the social construction of reading and writing if we helped students create their own vooks!  Whether they created an application for a computer or the iPhone/iPod/iPad, think how this type of mashed up reading/writing/thinking/sharing oriented learning experience might transform student thinking!  My initial reaction to Vook is that it could be an interesting rendition of a digital research paper or a fantastic stand alone multigenre element. I’ll be brainstorming with teachers this summer ways we might incorporate this kind of content creation into a unit of inquiry for the upcoming school year.  Take a look at this video from Vook and let the idea bubbling begin!

New Published Articles on Participatory Libraries and Learning

I am honored and pleased to share the publication of two new articles this month!

  • “What Kind of Teacher Are You?”, May/June 2011 issue of Knowledge Quest 
  • A sidebar companion mini-article on the social media streams and Learning Commons for AASL 2011 in Alice Yucht’s “Conference-Going Strategies, Redux” in Knowledge Quest. I’ll be writing more in June here on this blog about these virtual and face to face learning spaces!
  • “Creating Conversations for Learning: School Libraries as Sites of Participatory Culture”, May/June 2011 issue of School Library Monthly 
A heartfelt thank you to my KQ issue editors Sara Kelly Johns and Laura Pearle and SLM editor Deborah Levitov for their unwavering encouragement and for allowing me to be part of two great issues with my esteemed colleagues in the field.