Thursday, November 12, 2015

Headed to the shredder...

I'm doing some cleaning of my desk area.  Usually it's just work that needs to get done that is not a priority, so it piles up.  However, I am purging some of my things I thought I needed to save.  I've neatly stacked and organized them on the shelves by my desk. So, I am recycling 9 years of Extended Essay documentation!  It took up about half of my giant recycling bin.  I have supervised a LOT of Extended Essays over the years.  I average about 7 a year in direct supervision and then the usual 150 or so as EE Coordinator.  I have old forms, rough drafts, final drafts, checklists, folders and even pages from the old EE guide.  I'm making an effort to be more paperless, so hopefully I won't feel the need to hang on to things that I think I might need in the future (but then really don't).

You can't see it in the picture, but it's 14 inches of stacked paper!!!

Speak Up survey from Library of Michigan

The Library of Michigan is promoting a SpeakUp survey that I just participated in.  "Speak Up provides an easy way for students, parents and educators to participate in your local decisions about technology, as well as contribute to the state and national dialogue about educational technology. "
This really looks like something that will benefit our school community.  We've done a lot of AdvancED surveys and then just some school created surveys to give some quick feedback.  It might be important to have some good data to work with in terms of educational technology.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Excited about a new site today

There is so much "stuff" out there that it's hard to get excited about new things.  There are many Web 2.0 sites that don't necessarily contribute to the classroom.  It's edtech burnout or something for me.

However, this one got me excited today.  Turn a quote into a Masterpiece.  Love it!

Here's my first one:

Thursday, November 5, 2015

GVRL success story interview

GVRL Success Story interview

I did this a while ago and forgot to post it to my blog!  I remembered today because we have all the 10th graders using Gale Virtual Reference Library to research for their Progressive Era Stump Speeches.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

A new school year...2015-2016!

My blogging was a bit slow last year as I focused more on social media for the library, but I miss having a diary of sorts in one spot; so I am back to blogging more frequently.

Pinterest recently sucked me in and I was looking at back to school ideas.  I was inspired by this blog.  I debated changing the word classroom to library or Media Center.  But then I decided against it because the library IS my classroom.  I do a lot of teaching in here.  So, while it is the school library I am welcoming students into my classroom.  I feel like it helps to establish my role as a teacher and a librarian.

Some students did the lettering for me and it turned out beautiful!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White book review

White’s new novel had me from the beautiful illustration on the cover to each chapter having a blackbird stare at you while turning the page. Jessamin is from the island of Melei, which is a colony of Albion. She has earned/bribed her way into a boarding school and found a room at a local hotel, where she also works part time. She has mostly kept to herself until she bumps into Finn (Lord Ackerly) and her world changes. Her introduction into this magical world began with torture and then she was thrown into the world of nobility, which was very unexpected. This new world is full of magic, political intrigue and deception. Jessamin does not have any magical powers, but she has the brains to think herself out of seemingly impossible situations.

The setting is very reminiscent of Victorian London, but in an alternate reality with different names. Jessamin is a colonist, thus a second class citizen. She only came to Albion to get an education. Her father, who is a professor at her school, got her in but doesn’t really support her in any other way. Finn is breaking all the rules of nobility by associating with Jessamin, but he inadvertently got her involved in his world. This book is a blend of historical fiction, magic, romance and adventure. Jessamin is the narrator and it reads like realistic fiction. White created a few likeable characters that will grow on the reader and the evil Lord Downpike is a well portrayed as a villain. I disagree with the Kirkus review that says the characters are stereotypical because the twists at the end were quite unexpected to me. I would say that this book would be appropriate for most high school libraries. There is nothing controversial that stood out to me. I love that Jessamin was smart, good at math and logic, took her studies seriously and was brave in the face of danger. This book could be used for free reading and would fit well with fantasy and paranormal book displays in the school library. I really enjoyed this fantastical world. It was a gripping, fun read that is perfect for vacation or summer reading.