Friday, August 26, 2011

Open House 2011

Last night was our New Parent Orientation from 6pm -7pm and then we had Open House from 7pm - 9pm.

We welcomed the new parents and tried to answer all their questions. I gave them the run down of joining the parent list-serv, logging onto Zangle and using the IA Amazon store. I also gave a brief introduction to the library with some vital stats and how to access our resources.

As Open House started, we welcomed our returning parents and I started directing traffic. Parents follow their son/daughters schedule for the day. They visited 8 classes in just under 2 hours. It seemed like a pretty good showing. I don't have actual numbers, but the hallways were crowded and I answered a lot of questions. Hopefully we will get more traffic in the library during Parent-Teacher conferences. I am planning our FIRST EVER IA Book Fair! I hope to see a lot of book shoppers :)

Website Evaluation with 9th graders

We are finishing up week 2 at the IA *gasp* and so far...things are good. I have gotten to work 9 classes of freshmen and I'll work with the last 3 at our West campus next week. Since our students come from so many districts, I start with the basics so that all of our students are starting at the same place.

Their first library lesson was Website Evaluation. My guiding question for the lesson was "How do we determine what information sources to trust?" I have a presentation, lots of examples, some short videos and then a homework assignment. Students are asked to find a website and evaluate it according to the standards that I have given them for academic research. Our students sometimes struggle with determining if the author is an expert or not. I found this great video on YouTube this year and I think it did a great job of illustrating my point. The students seemed to enjoy it, so I think it will stick :)

I've been maintaining a orientation wiki for several years now and I've updated with materials for this year. This is the IA Orientation Wiki. It has been allowing me to collaborate with students across 3 campuses and it keeps my lessons nicely organized and easy for students to access. All good things :)

New Teacher Orientation

A few days before we started school on August 16, we held a new teacher orientation to welcome new teachers to our staff. It's usually a 4-5 hour day that ends up being information overload. There is so much information to convey in terms of IB Philosophy, IA curriculum, policies & procedures, not to mention the technology. We have about 1-2 hours to introduce Zangle, Moodle, Gale Databases, Destiny Quest, the IA Amazon Store, Discovery Education, Atomic Learning, EasyBib and So, I know that this is a lot of information to absorb...I make handy-dandy folders.

While there are a lot of accounts being set up and navigating the new software, I hope that the biggest take away of the day is that we integrate technology into all aspects of our curriculum. Integrating technology is my speciality and I look forward to working with our new teachers!