We recently mailed out Connections 97 to schools in Australia. In this issue, we included an article by Chris Harte about St Aidan’s Anglican Girls’ School which has received great feedback. The article showcases the wonderful things librarians Jackie and Megan are doing in their makerspace, and provides tips for people eager to follow in their footsteps.
Following the interest in this article, we’re reaching out to all of you to see if you are doing exciting and innovative things in your library that you would be willing to share with our readers. This will be a great way to share what’s happening in Australian and New Zealand school libraries and inspire others.
If you have a story to share that may be of benefit to the wider school library community – whether it’s organising your library’s collections in an exciting way, doing innovative things to engage students with their learning, or doing interesting things to promote literacy, STEM subjects, or your library itself – we’d love to hear about it.
Please don’t hesitate to send us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org if you’re interested in writing an article for Connections.
Here are the highlights from the latest issue of Connections, which is now available online.
Lending an ear for literacy
Leah Sheldon and Janine Sigley share how their not-for-profit organisation, Story Dogs, uses Dog Teams to engage students struggling with literacy in Australian schools.
Addressing reconciliation in a school setting
Teacher librarian Jan Poona examines reconciliation and how she has been able to address this in the library. She also includes an excerpt from a chapter she wrote for Reconciliation and Australian Social Work (Magpie Goose Publishing, 2015) titled ‘Teacher librarians, SCIS, and reconciliation’.
Promoting literature to students
Based in New Zealand as a literacy consultant, Bob Docherty offers his knowledge and passion for children’s literature to promote reading and literacy in schools.
Engaging students with new and emerging technologies
Chelsea Wright, Library and Learning Resources Leader at Salesian College Rupertswood VIC, discusses how a library-run Tech and Gaming Club can benefit students and schools, as well as achieve top-level library objectives. She also outlines a number of suggested activities.
From the desk of a cataloguer
SCIS cataloguer Julie Styles reviews some cataloguing decisions made by SCIS, and presents some of the issues librarians face when downloading records from other catalogues and using them to supplement SCIS records.
The latest issue of the SCIS journal, Connections, has been sent to all schools, and is available online.
Highlights of Connections 90 include:-
Taking Note of Nonfiction
Peter Macinnis, who presented the ‘Clayton’s list’ for the Eve Pownall award for information books, shares his insights into what makes a good information book.
Learning Online: MOOCs for library staff
Martin Gray, a teacher librarian from Singleton High School, looks at how he used MOOCs to further his professional learning with two very different online courses.
BlackWords: Celebrating writers and storytellers
Writer and activist, Dr. Anita Heiss looks at BlackWords and AustLit, which are freely available for schools, and how they can assist in embedding Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander histories and cultures into the curriculum.
SCIS’s Michael Jongen looks at the IndigenousX curated Twitter account and how it can help educators to hear a diverse range of authentic Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander voices.
The term 2 issue of Connections is published online at the SCIS website and features the following articles of interest to school library staff.
Once upon a story time
Thousands of Australians will celebrate National Simultaneous Story time on 21 May, Laura Armstrong reports that Ursula Dubosarsky and Andrew Joyner will be this year’s featured author and illustrator.
Growing, harvesting, preparing, sharing and learning
Bev Laing from the Stephanie Alexander Kitchen Garden Foundation discusses teaching resources related to sustainability and provides the context within education for sustainability and the persuasive context of a kitchen garden.
The Arts and Geography
Free practical digital resources that support the Australian Curriculum in the Arts and Geography highlighted by Gabrielle England from Education Services Australia.
New and revised subject headings
SCIS systems librarian Ben Chadwick looks at the SCIS subject headings, the 2014 SCIS authority files update and updates to Schools Online Thesaurus. A new set of special order files make it easier to download Scootle records into school library systems.
Stories from the stacks
Petra Stene and Judith Westaway show how they used weeded and recycled books to decorate Margaret River Senior High School Library, Western Australia.
Heading into holidays? Now you have some time, catch up on some professional reading. In case you missed it – the term 1 issue of Connections is published online at the SCIS website and features the following articles of interest to school library staff.
Dr. Pam Macintyre looks at the role of oral language in the development of successful literacy and suggests how schools can foster this in programmes such as In Other Words at Dinjerra Primary School, Melbourne. Pam is a lecturer in the Melbourne Graduate School of Education at the University of Melbourne. She is editor of the quarterly review Journal Viewpoint: on books for young adults and sits on the 100 Story Building board of directors.
Education Services Australia has partnered with Australian teachers’ associations to develop practical, classroom-related digital resources that are aligned to the Australian Curriculum. In this article Gabrielle England provides an overview of free online resources available for Phase 1 Learning Areas.
Belinda Doyle illustrates how Erskine Park High School library promotes and supports literacy and learning through the NSW Premier’s Reading Challenge, collaborating with teaching colleagues to meet wider reading outcomes.
SCIS catalogues apps and has introduced the term as a subject heading. Kay Cantwell provides a timely and practical introduction to apps and their management within the educational and library context.
The GR8 debate was organized in celebration of the National Year of Reading and explored how digital technologies such as iPads, social media and the instant internet culture impact upon our core, traditional abilities and views of reading and writing. Both sides battled it out with a diverse array of serious and humorous academic arguments
How Sunshine College celebrated Book week by looking at banned books
“The students were shocked that their favourite books had not been allowed in some places, including their much-loved year 10 class text, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. Suddenly, they could feel deliciously naughty while defending freedom of speech. They raided the shelves to find their favourite banned or challenged books. They then decided which passages to read, discussing, arguing, and testing them on each other.”
Anita Vandenberghe in her previous article talked about the philosophy of displays – what is the story behind it? Why should we have displays and would people even notice them? In this issue she highlights the practical side of display. Where to start, what topic to choose, where to get ideas, what material to use and how to prepare yourself?
Debbie Price-Ewen discusses changes to publishing models presented by e-books, including the possibilities for literacy development and empowerment of writers through self-publishing. She advocates for creation of an Australasian e-content consortium where school libraries collaborate to support creators and users.
The Australian Teacher Librarian Network assists teacher librarians to stay up to date with emerging devices, tools, media and virtual environments. Judy O’Connell reveals changes to the OZTL_NET discussion list and a new social media portal for communication between school library staff.
The National Year of Reading (NYR) has conducted successful events throughout the year including The Reading Hour. A legacy event in November is to be held in Canberra to celebrate achievements and influence policymakers about reading in Australia.