Monday, December 10, 2012

Don't miss this wonderful wiki!!

WebTools4u2use - home 
Nominated 2012 Best Educational Wiki

"A wiki for school library media specialists to learn about cool new web tools, see how they can be used in school library media programs, and share ideas & success stories." 


Sunday, November 18, 2012

NSW Book Week Judge for the Book Week 2014 - 2015

This post consists of a message from Jackie Hawkes - for The Children's Book Council of Australia (CBCA)  NSW 

 Hi All - For your consideration -
The  position for NSW Book Week Judge for the Book Week 2014 - 2015 period is now open to members of the Children's Book Council of Australia -  NSW Branch.

New judges will be reading for the winners of the 2014 and 2015 Book Week Awards.

It is an amazing and demanding job, which this year included reading and annotating around 500 books as submitted by publishers for the Book Of the Year considerations in the  categories of Younger Readers, Older Readers, Picture Book, Early Childhood and the Eve Pownall Information Book. A team of judges from each of the states shares the decision making process, though at this stage all judges read all books submitted.

If you are interested or know of someone who may be, you are certainly encouraged to check out further information on the CBCA NSW details under the heading of Book Week.
Happy LOTS of reading -
Cheers- Jackie Hawkes - for CBCA NSW

Library innovation - the vision for 21st Century libraries

All Australian educators are welcome to register to use PLANE
Pathways for Learning Anywhere Anytime Network of Educators. 
 SO much to discover and learn.

             Hurry up!!! 
                             Boarding very soon!! 

 Don't miss the opportunity to share with interested teachers.
 TeachMeet@PLANE - Library innovation -
       the vision for 21st Century libraries 

Our 7th virtual teachmeet to explore hot topics in ICTs in education. 
The event is held via Adobe Connect. 
 Register for the event here 
 Further event details will be in your confirmation email. 
 Booking Date: Wednesday, 21 November, 2012 - 19:00 to 20:30
Love to see you there

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Are you enjoying Picture Book Month?

As a Picture Book Ambassador I am delighted to share this important message from Christopher Cheng-
Author & Picture Book Month Liaison:

The celebration of Picture Book Month is nearly half way through and some of the leading picture book creators have added their thoughts on why picture books are important - including Jackie French.

Two more Australians are yet to feature, Emma Quay and Bruce Whatley so do check in to Picture Book Month and read their words.

A printable calendar is here
and there is also a page that links to websites with activities.

Christopher Cheng
Author & Picture Book Month Liaison

Don't miss out on the fabulous activities  available and make sure you print a few of the Picture Book Month posters and place them around your school. 

Monday, October 29, 2012

Help save ETIS!! please

I am sharing an important message, with permission, from Marjan, Manager, Education and Training Information Service (ETIS) Strategic Information and Reporting.

"A big thank you to all our clients who have provided feedback on the ETIS closure to the ETIS feedback email or have contacted the Director-General and the D-DGs.  

The feedback period ends this Friday November 2 so if you have not had the time to supply feedback, it is not too late to do so before the end of this week.



We have been informed that the Strategic Information and Reporting Directorate, Office of Education, has identified that the Education and Training Information Service (ETIS) will be closed in December because of current staff cuts. The information and library services ETIS provides will no longer be available.

The Department will lose a service providing principals, teachers and counsellors as well as regional, state office and executive staff with specialised literature searches, alert services, historical services and cost-efficient supply of published researchAccess to the archival collection of departmental publications dating from 1848 will also no longer be available. ETIS is a unique service in the Department used for decision making, policy development, professional learning, quality teaching and evidence based practice.

We invite you to give feedback during the 4 week consultation period which began on 8 October.  This is your opportunity to provide information and examples about how this closure will affect your work. 

You can use and/or forward your feedback to your D D-G until Friday November 2.  Please forward this email to your colleagues.

Feel free to contact me if you would like further details.

Marjan McKeough, Manager - on behalf of the ETIS team

Strategic Information and Reporting
Locked Bag 2006, Strathfield NSW 2135
P: (02) 9715 8357  F: (02) 9715 8292  E:
NSW Department of Education and Communities


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

WEBINAR: How can we ensure that the ICT used enhances learning outcomes?

I am sharing a message from Karen Bonanno for those who are interested: Disclaimer: I have no association with this company nor do I stand to make any profit from any registrations that are made. :) If we are integrating ICT in the curriculum, are we just replacing what we already do well with technology? If so, then why are we doing this? This webinar looks at the pedagogy behind best practice in digital learning and how teaching units can be designed to ensure the ICT used enhances or leverages the learning outcomes. The aim should always be to provide a better or more engaging way of learning for students to not only succeed but to learn more and become highly skilled in learning how to learn. This webinar will be presented by June Wall. June has been a teacher at primary and secondary levels, a lecturer, a professional development and education consultant, teacher librarian and computer coordinator in the government and non government sectors for over 30 years. Her passion has always been designing learning experiences that allow students and teachers to be innovative whilst based on individual inquiry. Join June and I this coming Wednesday, 24 October for this one hour event. The time for this webinar is 7.00 pm to 8.00 pm AEST. For those on Daylight Saving Time, the start time will be one hour later, e.g. Sydney, Melbourne, Canberra, Hobart the start time will be 8.00 pm. Check the link below to find out the start time in your timezone. Register now at to secure your spot and to receive your unique login web link for the webinar. If you have a colleague who would be interested in this topic, please feel free to forward on the invitation to connect in for this webinar. Regards Karen P.S. Members, please log in to register for this event. P.P.S. Now that Daylight Saving Time is in place, find out the time of this event in your timezone - check the Event Time Announcer: Times around the World Eduwebinar Pty Ltd PO Box 290 Zillmere, QLD 4034 AU

Monday, August 20, 2012

SLANSW needs a strong, positive forward thinking vice president.

School Library Association of New South Wales (SLANSW) AGM nomination deadline Friday.
                                                  Partial screenshot

Membership Information

Membership is open to all teacher librarians, librarians, library technicians, library workers, library supporters, library and information organisations and corporations that serve the library community in NSW. You are invited to join as a personal or institutional member.
I am sharing a recent shout out, from Georgia Phillips  Committee member SLANSW:

 Dear colleagues, 
Never has there been a greater need for a strong state teacher librarian association. Reactionary forces have been able to dominate the association. We need action from members new and old in putting their names forward for the SLANSW committee.

 All over our state we have competent, creative, dynamic and visionary teacher librarians. Now is the time to put your names forward for a reinvigorated, dynamic and strong, future oriented association committee. 

 We badly need a secretary. Our wonderful president has been trying to do both jobs! We badly need a strong, positive forward thinking vice president. 

 For the sake of the profession in NSW, go to and download a nomination form, no matter which part of the state you are from (Ignore the regional areas designated. This is not in line with the constitution, which states "1 ordinary member from each of the nominated regions" These regions can be changed and with the filling of executive positions, regional positions can become vacant) 
Get the signature of two nominators, sign it yourself and get your form in to the Professional Teachers Council fax 02-95642342, by 5 pm next Friday 24 August. 

 A brief paragraph about yourself and your vision for the association and TLs would be desirable. 
 2013 is a deciding year for the continuation of TLs in NSW government schools, especially. Please feel free to contact me for further information. 
 Thank you, 
 Georgia Phillips 
 Committee member SLANSW

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Without libraries we'd be dum!!!

Author Daniel Handler (a.k.a. Lemony Snicket) plays the accordion and sings about "A World Without Libraries" at a Friends of the San Francisco Public Library event. 
Thanks Sue Crawford for sharing.
Enjoy these past library posters. 
Thanks to Karen Bonanno for sharing on School Library Advocacy

Friday, June 15, 2012

AEU, ASLA and ALIA statement about school libraries.

Below is the text of a joint statement about school libraries signed by the presidents of the AEU, ASLA and ALIA issued June 14, 2012 and kindly shared by Barbara Braxton.

In an increasingly information- and knowledge-based age, one of the many elements of a world class education for all Australian students is access to high quality modern library services through the provision of professionally staffed 21st century school libraries.

School libraries and teacher librarians make a significant contribution to school communities and student learning outcomes.

There is a strong relationship between the presence of a qualified teacher-librarian in an accessible well-resourced school library and student achievement.
The severe decline in the number of qualified teacher librarians staffing libraries, in the number of teacher librarian training programs, in school library funding, and in centralised school library services and policy advisers over the last several decades is incompatible with this important educational outcome.

Despite the demonstrated importance of teacher-librarians and libraries, library services have been seriously affected by budget constraints and changing funding and staffing policies and practices. This has undermined the capacity and quality of library services provided by schools; library staffing, resources, services, equipment and facilities.

Devolution of aspects of decision making and financial management to the local level means that funding for school libraries relies on the resource allocation priorities established at the local level, which might or might not place a high priority on the need for a well-staffed library service.

This has led to marked differences between schools where library funding and staffing is at the discretion of the individual school and there are competing budgetary demands within schools.

Without an appropriate funding formula and guidelines for school libraries, the existing
inequitable funding arrangements will continue. This will increase the marginalisation of some libraries through underfunding and neglect, while others are prioritised within their schools and are able to provide quality print and multimedia resources as well as access to emerging technologies, electronic databases, the internet and other on-line resources. This is a basic requirement for any school library and should be the norm rather than the exception.

Such marked differences between schools are incompatible with the stated commitment of
governments to provide a world class quality education for every Australian child. Equitable
access to an appropriately funded and well resourced school library and the services of a fully qualified teacher librarian is the right of all students and schools.

Angelo Gavrielatos
Federal President

Vanessa Little

Isobel Williams

Monday, June 4, 2012

More losses for our school communities

In relation to School Libraries support  it has been confirmed that the organisational chart published at this stage reflects:
·         no policy and curriculum support specific to school libraries, with implications, among other things,  for support for resourcing Australian Curriculum in schools by school libraries and teacher librarians
·         no Scan positions - though the functional descriptions document mentions Scan I can’t see the positions to produce it
·         no support for the kinds of resources etc as provided by our team members and online content, and things like Links4Learning
·         reduced SCIS cataloguing support (1 less librarian)

If you would like more information about the proposed restructure, you might like to go to you will need to access via the portal.
 If you look at ‘functional realignment’ in the left hand menu, you will get access to the organisation charts for what appears to be our new area, Learning and Leadership, including Early Childhood & Primary Education and Secondary Education. 
Apart from the cuts, English and Literacy will no longer be part of the one team and will soon be divided into primary and secondary teams – an odd decision given that we are now embracing a K-10 syllabus.
There is an email address (also available through the webpage above) for any interested person to ask for further information or express an The consultation period lasts until 10am on Thursday 7 June only.

National Year of Reading update

Sharing a National Year of Reading update. Support the National Year of Reading
We love hearing about how you’re celebrating the National Year of Reading – just let us know by emailing us on

Future of Reading
What do you think is the future of reading? Will it change? Will we move totally from books to electronic devices or something else? Will esteemed authors of the past be relevant to future generations? Will ereaders change the way kids read? Tell us your thoughts by contacting us on We’re writing a report for government at the end of the National Year of Reading and we’re looking for input from the public (bookclubs, writers, teachers, librarians, keen readers and people who have struggled with reading) on their views of the future of reading. Let us know your thoughts by the 20 July 2012.

The Reading Hour
Our next big event is The Reading Hour on the 25 August. We’re busy organising activities, the webpage and posters. What events and activities are you planning for The Reading Hour? Check out our wiki page where we’ll be loading lots of ideas and information over the next few months

 What ten books would get your vote?

To celebrate the National Year of Reading, ABC TV’s First Tuesday Book Club is looking for the 10 Aussie Books to Read before You Die – the great Australian reading list! Head to the website to browse the list and vote

The ABC would also love libraries and bookstores to promote this - so just visit our wiki to download the posters and media release.

We’ve also added a clip of Jennifer Byrne encouraging everyone to visit their library to vote – which is available to all libraries to use

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Melvil Dewey: Library Superstar

International Library Hip Hop Superstar-Scooter Hayes, aka Melvil Dewey
Melvil Dewey teaches children the importance of libraries in our communities, advocates reading and introduces basic library skills.  His first single, The Dewey Decimal Rap, has over half a million hits on YouTube and is being distributed worldwide by McGraw-Hill in 2012

Mr. M. Dewey raps “Everybody put your library card up” and “If you love reading say whoop! whoop! /If you love libraries! Cards up!”
Welcome to the library lyrics

Visit here to get Melvil's Hip Hop Songs on CD, Tshirts and more....

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Fresh news about school libraries each day....

Check out the production widget on the right of this blog.
LongLiveLibraries4Lifelonglearning is a daily collation of tweets and google+ posts that relate to school libraries
I hope it saves you time by being all in one place.  It will be updated daily.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Neighbourly mentors instead of silencing book police

10 Changes to Expect from the Library of the Future | Online Universities | Diigo

Enterprising librarians know they can still bring literature to the masses by utilizing its lust for technology and most TLs I know are most enterprising!!

Most school libraries have developed such programs which  recommend visual schedules so kids know what’s coming up next, carpet tiles or cushions for sitting, and hands-on activities.

Many school libraries are  already focused on learning as a whole, rather than just literature." Libraries are all about education."

Do you see these ten changes being incorporated into many school libraries? Are there any handy tips or hints from readers out there to help teacher librarians implement these changes?

Most TLs I know are already neighbourly mentors NOT of silencing book police! Libraries should be inviting and a meeting place with provision for peaceful working areas. They should not resemble a football field but nor should they be solemn, silent places,

Love to hear your thoughts.

Friday, April 20, 2012

May and reading time!! May all of us read more!!


During National Year of Reading 

  get your school involved in this great event....
Register to join the National Simultaneous Storytime  - Be counted!! Be part of the fun!!

Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) announces for 2012: 
held during Library Information Week (LIW)

ALIA also make available a great range of support resources:
Powerpoint and PDF versions of The Very Cranky Bear (Coming soon)
Podcast (Coming soon)
AUSLAN podcast (Coming soon)
Bear mask template (Coming soon)
The Very Cranky Bear paper doll template (ready)
and there's more

.So Get Caught Reading!! Read Write Think

enter the READ MORE IN MAY competition!    [ENTER HERE] 

National Family Reading Month Competition 
Terms and Conditions of Entry

Sunday, April 15, 2012

School Library's are vital. Stand tall!!

In his article: The Unsung Heroes in our Schools,  Brad Meltzer explains that  "school librarians transform lives through education and make it possible for students to thrive in a 21st century learning environment.
Meltzer is concerned that much of the school librarian/teacher librarians' vital work is largely unrecognized." but he feels that "what is worse, it is being compromised, as local, state and federal funding for school libraries continues to shrink."

Librarians are experts. They don’t spend all their time re-­shelving books.  They help staff  with resources to support their curriculum programs, assist students with research tasks, manage the complex library resources, promote  a reading culture to increase literacy levels......

 Meltzer encourages the readers to fight for funding for school libraries: "As policymakers and school administrators struggle with tough decisions, we as a nation must voice our support and advocate for funding, so that all children have access to 21st century school library programs."

in the article Librarians role vital the former director-general of the National Library of Australia stated that "Libraries are just as important today as they were before the digital revolution." Books last for 300 years but the obsolescence of some digital devices reinforces the need for experts to manage various storage techniques.

Fullerton said that the great benefit of the digital revolution was that it had allowed libraries to make their collections more accessible than ever. “We use technology to do what libraries have always done, which is make it simple and easy for people all over Australia to find what they want, and to get what they want.”

Moreover, the role of the librarian is still relevant in the 21st century. “They’re mediators, they help people, they point out directions. Librarians are still critically important, and while the physical space might be less so, there’s always a need for someone to show the way, to tell people, to let them think in different ways.”

One really effective way to let everyone know how effective your school library is-show them.

Further readings:

There are plenty of research results available at The Hub: Research
How Do PA School Libraries Measure Up? The Pennsylvania School Library Study
The 2011 PA School Library Study provides a benchmark for school libraries in Pennsylvania. Determine how your library measures up and what you can do to gain more support for your library program based on the recommendations from the study.

School librarians play critical role in helping kids make the grade

Effective School Library Programs Positively Impact Student Achievement.
View the findings from the NJASL-funded 
CISSL Study of New Jersey School Libraries Study overview

Libraries must be the future – for the good of democracy

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Quality, digital kids reads for iPads.

Early in 2011 these Top Ten iPad Storybook Apps from Kirkus Reviews were posted.

Digital books have evolved so much in just a few short years! 
It is amazing to look back at what were the top in February 2011 compared with some of the e-books available now.
Look at today's top 10 pirate books from Digital Storytime
Top 10 Dog books    Top 10 Stars, Planets and Space
Digital Storytime Logo

Digital storytime is a great place to start when checking for quality digital books. 
You must still preview any books before deciding to include them in your program..

I recommend you to watch out for this new series: "Lulu in..."
Lulu in Australia is the first in a series of books about Lulu's world travels.
iPhone Screenshot 2
 This story is about their first trip in the series ... to Australia.
Currently priced at  0.99c
Read a Lulu in Australia review at Digital Storytime. 

6 different languages: English, French, Spanish, Dutch, Portuguese, and German
•Two modes of reading: “Listen and Play” or “Listen” (without the interactions)
•Reading with or without the “Karaoke” function
•Independent touch pronunciation of each word
•“Explain to me” which shows a word’s definition and its opposite to provide context for unfamiliar words
•“Show me” gives an illustration that represents a word
•Vowel display
•Indication of silent letters
•Syllable by syllable breakdown
•An animated cartoon which illustrates each page

Lulu in Polynesia

★ Charmingly illustrated in brilliant, vintage-feel colors by St├ęphanie Bertault.
Sounds and music by David Herschel, former Radio France producer.
Written by Vanessa Pol, a world traveler who loves sharing her discoveries, in collaboration with David Herschel, coauthor of several children’s books.

15 illustrated and animated worlds
The explorer’s map. A practical tool the child can use to go directly to the page of his or her choice, or to a favorite game.

All pages are interactive
Two languages: English and French

Six mini-games

Sound can be muted at any time
Easy, intuitive interface

Reading time: 25 minutes
Universal app, runs on both iPhone on iPad

iPhone Screenshot 4

I love this digital book for the variety available-both fiction & non-fiction all in 1 app
Scott's Submarine   Currently costs $4.49 
Embark with Scott, his cat Jazz and their friend Aiko and learn about 
sea life wonders and the mysteries of the deep blue sea.

An original story written for digital devices, rich of interactive content, with wonderful artwork by Matt Roussel, internationally acclaimed 3D illustrator. 

The story offers two levels of reading: one using simple words, for very young children and a second one with a more advanced vocabulary and a longer text.

Many great reviews support this e-book's inclusion in your digital library.

Most pages contain ambient sounds, music and interactive content. 
- 37 fully illustrated pages
- 17 sea animal facts with real life photos
- 2 age ratings: 2-3 and 4+
- 4 languages

iPhone Screenshot 2

 If a marine animal is visible on a shot, facts about this animal are displayed, with educative text and a real-life photo!
iPhone Screenshot 5

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Join the Library Conference Day-Monday 16 July

Subject: Important date for Library SAOs – Primary & Secondary – All Regions
from DEC South West Sydney Region SASS Reference Group Library Committee:-Jennifer Dyer, Birrong Girls High School                                      and                                       

Debbie Van der Meer, Cecil Hills High School

Would Teacher Librarians please pass this information on to their Library staff:-

Make a note in your diary now - advance notice! 

Monday 16th July 2012 (Term 3, School Development Day) is the DEC SWS RSRG Library Conference Day to be held at the BreakFree International Hotel, Chapel Road, Bankstown, Sydney.

Debbie and I are organising the program and to give you a taste of what is to come, we have the NSW Ambassador for the 2012 National Year of Reading, Suzanne Gervay OAM, as one of our presenters.  Check out her new release of “Ships in the Field” – a children’s picture book that many of our migrant families will love.  We will also hear, see and discuss her other treasured publications covering all ages and interests.
Ships In The Field Ships in the field "crosses boundaries in a universal recognition that children are part of the journey of war, migration, loss and healing. Through warmth, humour, pathos and story within story, it breaks the silence engaging children, families and community."
 Related links:
As our first conference last year was a great success, we are expanding our intake and inviting all SASS from outside our region and beyond to come and join us!  The Hotel has plenty of parking underneath, is close to transport and shops and has accommodation for those who would like to come from a distance, so start making enquiries at your school if they would be willing to subsidise your attendance?  (Program and costs are still to be determined – advance notice only at this stage.)

Watch this space for more information as it comes to hand - this is just a taste of what’s to come!  We plan to make it really worth your while attending.

2012 Shortlist is announced

Children's Book Council of Australia has announced the 2012 Shortlist (print friendly)

I'm delighted because Flood by Jackie French made it in the Picture book section.
Flood TEACHER NOTES FOR FLOOD. Published by Scholastic Press, 2011
 "This is a story that shows how devastating floods can be to homes and livelihoods. Whilst it is inspired by the 2011 Queensland floods, it could be about any of the disasters that strike our land, events that turn everyday Australians into heroes. FLOOD shows water mercilessly ripping through Queensland towns and then receding, leaving destruction and devastation in its wake. Told from the perspective of a cattle dog separated from its family, FLOOD helps children to understand the effects of a traumatic natural disaster without being too confronting, while the story of the little tugboat that pushes a boardwalk out to sea, staving off further disaster, gives children a hero they can relate to. FLOOD is a beautiful and timely expression of the strength of the Australian spirit during times of adversity."   available for $16.99 at Dymocks

I am also most delighted that  Rudie Nudie by Emma Quay made the  early childhood list.

Cover of “Rudie Nudie” by Emma Quay
WHERE TO BUY THE BOOK – click here for ABC Shop
On the CBCA  Merchandise page I discovered that "PDF or eBook versions of the Shortlist and Notable Books will avaiable for the first time this year."

Claiming the week!! Celebrate Library and Information Week


              Library and Information Week (LIW) will be held from 20 - 26 May 2012



This 'THINK OUTSIDE THE BOOK'! theme lends itself for you to personalise!

Tell your clients and users what you do that is 'outside the book'. 

Tell them about all the things you do that are about more than just books.
  • Genealogy
  • Music, DVD's and toys.
  • Research
  • IT support
  • Education and training
  • Preservation
  • The list is long...
  • This year's theme highlights that libraries are far more than just the books they contain and opens the door to give the community a chance to discover all the things you can offer.
Visit Australian Library Information Association to discover more about LIW and how you can celebrate.
The events below always work well at our school and I also hold a bookfair during this time to get our school community in to visit our library so they can see first hand the learning space and the learning tools available to their children.
Wednesday 23 MayNational Simultaneous Storytime
Throughout the month of MayInformation Awareness Monthhttp://www.informationawarenessmonth

Connecting Information and People

The purpose of Information Awareness Month (IAM) is to increase public awareness of the breadth of the information industry through a series of events all through the month of May. Showing the importance of properly maintaining good records and information as it relates to everyone from global Corporations through to small business and even the homemaker - to "connect information and people".