You Think You Know What Librarians Do?

| Originally publish on BubbleUp Classroom by Corey Thornblad|

This week I had the pleasure of participating in the annual Virginia Association of School Librarians conference in Norfolk, Virginia. I’ll admit that I was a fish out of water — the only teacher in a sea of school librarians. Even though I don’t know much about the Dewey Decimal system or online catalogs, they made me feel right at home.

As I sat at dinner, listening to their conversation about teaching and learning, I realized that unless you have had the privilege of working in a school over the past decade you may not understand what school librarians actually do.  Librarians are not a braggy bunch; so I feel inclined to set the record straight on their behalf. You probably think they spend their entire day shelving and checking out books, while shushing students. It’s time to set aside these stereotypes and give librarians their long overdue kudos.

Librarians teach — a lot 
First and foremost, school librarians are teachers. If you walk into our school’s library on any given day you are likely to see one of our librarians co-teaching or independently teaching a lesson. In order to pull this off, librarians have to be content experts in everything from science to math to PE. Moreover, librarians have the ability and desire to teach children of all levels and learning styles.

Librarians are Apple Geniuses in disguise
Librarians know A LOT about technology. Our librarians are the go-to teachers in our building for everything tech. They help us search the web, use Twitter, create our own websites, and help us learn how to use Google Classroom.

Read more

The Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Philosophy Series is an “Excellent Source”

Supporting the knowledge of philosophy can be tough, but it doesn’t have to be with the Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Philosophy Series. Using film, literature, art, case studies, and other disciplines, the handbooks provide illustrations of human experiences to work as gateways to questions philosophers try to address. Composed of ten volumes (available individually) that serve undergraduate college students who have had little or no exposure to philosophy, as well as the curious lay reader, the Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Philosophy Series is recommended for undergraduate and public libraries.

See how the Macmillan Interdisciplinary Handbooks: Philosophy Series is a must have resource with two reviews posted in the American Reference Books Annual, Spring 2017 Edition:

Read more

A Look Inside Gale’s Reading Mentor Program

| By Caroline Drexler |

Background

I began my career at Gale as a library sales consultant in February of 2000, moving to my current customer success manager role in 2016. Within my first two years at Gale, I heard about an organization working with students at the local elementary school since 1998 called the Hillside Mentor program. At the time Laurie Fundukian was heading up this program, she worked in the editorial department at Gale for over 17 years.

Typically, each fall the Hillside Mentor team reaches out to the school to determine the start date of the program—we solicit Gale folks to get volunteers. Normally, we get about 30 volunteers, but there is no limit due to the massive amount of kids requesting help. Usually, one or two students are assigned a mentor, for one hour every week. We meet with the student in the library or classroom and read to them while they eat lunch, while trying to encourage them to read to us. Some days, we play a game or talk but as a mentor, our job is to improve their skills by encouraging them to read.

Dylan’s Story

When I joined the program I was assigned a student who was not only a poor reader, but also had many challenges at home.  His name was Dylan, a kindergartner at Hillside Elementary, who was living with his grandparents. He was never read to as a child and dealt with the immense struggles of a missing father and drug addicted mother. I could tell he was a very curious child, but had issues focusing on a specific task.

Read more

Public Libraries Help Solve California’s Dropout Problem

Today, nearly 40 million adults lack their high school diploma. Your library can play a key role in re-engaging adults into the education system, with Career Online High School, part of the world’s first accredited private online school district. Along with academic coaches, certified teachers, and technical support staff, your library can help these students realize … Read more

Local Libraries Expand Offerings with Gale Courses

Gale Courses supports libraries as educational institutions and gives community members easy access to lifelong learning opportunities including professional development, technology, and personal enrichment courses. Tied to the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ fastest-growing occupations, Gale Courses covers a variety of career topics, positioning the library to drive local economic development and meet demand for the top workplace skills. Gale Courses provides more than 365, six-week long online programs taught by college instructors who are experts in their field.

See how Lemont Public Library is using Gale Courses to foster positive change in their community with a Chicago Tribune newsletter!

To support continuing education in your community with Gale Courses, request a trial today!

Read more

Giving Thanks for National Teachers’ Day

| By Debra Kirby |

National Teachers’ Day, which is observed in the United States on the first Tuesday of the first full week in May, is a great time to reflect on all the ways teachers have enriched our lives. Engaged teachers go beyond teaching their students the subject matter related to their classes—they also teach such skills as critical thinking, communication, organization, teamwork, and—in some cases—act as role models in ways that benefit their students into adulthood.

I was very fortunate to have just such a teacher: Mrs. Erma Colding, the science teacher at Harms Elementary in Detroit. Her class was the favorite of many students, and not just because it was filled with plants and animals. She was kind, engaging, encouraging, passionate about learning, and made science fun! Most of this I recognized at the time, but it was many years before I realized she had also been a role model for grace, dignity, and courage. I kept in touch with Mrs. Colding throughout my life, but only learned after her death that she was also a civil rights activist and a recipient of the prestigious NAACP Freedom and Justice Award.

Read more

Create an Immersive Experience with Gale Interactive

Gale Interactive: Human Anatomy and Chemistry have been positively reviewed recently by Magan Szwarek, a director of Reference Services. A lover of audiobooks and a dedicated readers’ advisor, Magan serves on the Steering Committee of the Adult Reading Round Table and is enthusiastic about re-imaging what public libraries can offer the communities they serve. This impressive review, published … Read more

Not Studying for an Exam is a Crime…

| By Traci Cothran |

Two University of Kentucky students were arrested last week and charged with third-degree burglary for allegedly breaking into a professor’s office in the dead of night to steal an exam. The pair told police they entered the office via ceiling air ducts, and their teacher caught them upon returning to the office from a food break around 2 am.

While this does conjure up some cool images from Mission: Impossible, let’s not forget that these students now not only face a failing test grade, but college disciplinary action as well as legal proceedings . . . not to mention having to explain their actions to their parents.  And I have to wonder, dear reader, wouldn’t it have been just as easy (and less perilous) to study for the final?

Read more

Unearth the Story Behind Hulu’s Riveting New Series, The Handmaid’s Tale

| By Traci Cothran | The Handmaid’s Tale is a new TV series on Hulu, and it’s getting a lot of attention. The Guardian calls it a “timely adaptation [that] scares with dystopian dread.”  USA Today dubs it “a wake-up call for women.”  James Poniewozik from The New York Times says, “It is unflinching, vital and … Read more