I’m sure there’s a bigger list somewhere ~ but it’s handy to have this Scrib document from James Greenwood. Perhaps you have another source to share?
A key feature of our library is its integration of 70s retro design – within a very modern 21st century look. I WILL post up a whole set of images and story of our renovation – when it’s done.
“What?”, you say. “It’s still not fininshed?”.
When you restrict work to holiday periods for a major overhaul – it’s gotta be a long-haul renovation. But we’re nearly there. Here’s what it looks like at the moment…creating a new office, and new AV department! Phew!
Meanwhile, I’m thinking about how to add an interesting graphic element to the space behind the front desk (currently hidden behind those boards/shovel)
It’s a large area – smooth lime green cupboards, that hide filing drawers, slide-out storage baskets, books storage etc, and two whole purpose-designed laptop storage cupboards for laptops for loan. (Designed these ourselves!!) Each drawer has a ventilated base, a swing arm that delivers power and data within the drawer to fixed points – easy to connect laptops quickly.
What I want to do with the smooth green doors is have different vinyl lettering/images that can transform the interface.
So I was having fun looking at these 40+ Vintage Posters to inspire my developing design ideas.
Next – we need Dean Groom to come on over and get cracking with more ideas.
My friend and colleague Gary @chemedlinks, chemistry teacher and learning technology evangelist, pointed me to a fabulous article in the Chronicle of Higher Education: ‘Teach Naked’ – When Computers Leave Classrooms, so does Boredom.
This is a fabulous read.
Gary will be presenting a Keynote at the ASLA NSW PD day this coming Saturday, on the topic of “Pedagogical Powerpoint”. His message is really the same at Mr Bowen -Gary urges us to add pedagogical value to your classes if you are using Powerpoint. The idea is that we should challenge thinking, inspire creativity, and stir up discussion with a Powerpoint presentation – not present a series of dry facts. Of added value is Gary’s work on hunting down research papers that shed light onto the whole notion of how to use Powerpoint well.
There is so much that we can get involved in if we want to in schools – whether it’s podcasting or ‘powerpointing’ – its about driving deep learning through deep investigation and discussion.
Meanwhile, enjoy reading the article, and perhaps take it to your next staff meeting as a discussion starter.
More than any thing else, Mr. Bowen wants to discourage professors from using PowerPoint, because they often lean on the slide-display program as a crutch rather using it as a creative tool. Class time should be reserved for discussion, he contends, especially now that students can download lectures online and find libraries of information on the Web.
Information in Bb 2.0 is one of the coolest things I have come across – appropriate for the ‘rethink’ time of the holidays! Play any or all of these videos together, start them at any time, in any order to create your own collage of user experience.
Be sure to play the 3rd down on the left: ” information will breathe in and out of us”
By Daniel Donahoo (2009)
she closes the lid
and unplugs the device
no bigger than her thumb
from the computer.
My lifes work, she says. But, it isnt her lifes work.
You see, we store information like an Escher painting.
It shouldnt all fit in there. But, it does.
And every day we manage to fit more and more into smaller and smaller spaces until one day
we will be able to fit all the information the world has
everything that everyone knows and believes and dreams
It will all be there. Stored and filed.
Tagged with any keywords you might imagine.
Our hard drives will be thin air.
They will make nanobots look like elephants.
And elephants will be in there too. Tagged. Accessible with search terms
like grey, ivory,
and the largest land dwelling mammal
We will process away at nothing and understand everything.
We will think of a word and the information will slip in, not through our ears or eyes
but straight thorough our skin. Information will breathe in and out of us,
permeate our skin.
Our knowing will be as deep as it is wide.
You see our work here is to learn so much,
to be so full of knowing,
that all there is left to do is unlearn.
Humanity must get to a point where we let go.
We leave the useless ideas and the spent ideologies in the recycle bin.
like an adolescent brain shedding neurons.
like a snake slithering from its old skin.
like an old man who has come to understand so well the point where reality meets the intangible that he is able to decide which breath will be his last. And, he will enjoy that breath more than any that he has taken in his entire life.
And, her lifes work is more than a four meg flash drive.
My lifes work, she says, is the impact that this has.
This is not about what I produce. It is all about what others receive.
Last term some of our students were working on movie trailers with a colleague. A perfect opportunity to introduce ideas about open source, creative commons, or royalty free image and music for use by schools. There are a number of strategies that teachers should be familiar with – time to make a nice list!
I was pleased to get a ‘heads up’ from Barry Starlin about Soundzabound. Just in time for our next batch of movie work.
Here’s what the site tells us:
Soundzabound Royalty Free Music supersedes Fair Use in that we fully license the music with unlimited rights for education and sign off that you are protected. Fair Use has limitations in use and states the you are liable should there be a claim. Soundzabound also provides the solutions for:
- Education Approved Content in a searchable database
- Artist branding rights not covered under Fair Use
- User statistic reports
- Web-based interface formatted for all your production purposes
What this tells me is that it is safe to let students jump onto the site and grab what they need to enliven their productions. Soundzabound shows how their sites works, and the multitude of contexts that sound bites can be used in.
This is where the site comes into its own. The movie trailers our students made could not be put onto the web safely – fair use didn’t cover publication of the end products on Youtube. Had the students used files from Soundzaboud we could have shared their magical creations.
My next move, when the school term starts, is to make available a school list of resources for such productions. Should have done it ages ago – but the time is now right.
Here are some sources I have already collected. There will be others I know, so if you have a favourite site, list or collection, and have time please let me know.
There was a time when books, newspapers, magazines and journals were the prime source of content and information. It was always your move! navigating the authority maze, enjoying slow reading of (limited) information sources in order to gain a knowledge base that matched a particular curriculum outline.
Now communication is the new curriculum, and content is but grist to the mill that churns new knowledge. Why? I came across a few good reads this week that set me thinking and wondering about the changes that we must support in our teaching and in our library services.
Think about this:
The era of Teacher Librarians ‘taking a class’ in order to show kids how to search, get basic skills, or navigate resources is over. This is a teachers job!! Teach the teacher by all means (that’s professional development) but don’t waste time doing repeat performances for a teacher who hasn’t caught up with how to integrate information resources into the curriculum. How can they claim to be good teachers if they can’t model how to use information effectively? How to use new search tools? How to navigate databases? These ARE NOT specialist skills any more – they are core skills for learning!
The era of collaborating, communicating and integrating resources flexibly and online is here to stay. Every form of interactive and social media tools should be deployed by school libraries to support learning, teaching and communicating with and between students. Are teachers ready for this? Are your own library staff ready for this?
So what is the situation with content?
Dave Pollard wrote about The Future of Media: Something More than Worthless News. Agreed, the reason he wrote the post is quite different to mine – but in a lateral kind of way, what he wrote has huge relevance to information professionals. Media is changing, and the way media can work for or against learning is deeply concerning. Dave writes
Few people care to take the time needed either to do great investigative work, or to think creatively and profoundly about what all the mountains of facts really mean.
There’s the rub – mountains of fact. Authority and relevance are as nothing when we are confronted with mountains of information to sift and verify. The alternative is to grab ‘something’ and miss the opportunity to engage in real metacognitive knowledge activities.
The diagram Dave offers provides a strong framework for information professionals. How do we deal with new and urgent information need? What value do we place on media scrutiny?
Of course we can’t answer these questions effectively without taking into consideration the shifting dimensions of interoperability and semantic search. We are datamineing on the one hand, and creating data on the other.
Now what’s the implications of this? Semantic search depends on our tags! and our tags depend on our understanding of the strengths and weaknesses inherent in data sets. It all depends on how things are defined and linked! Duplicate and meaningless content is created by poor search engine optimization and keyword cannibalisation. This means that the info junk pile continues to grow. The Search Engine Journal provides a good set of graphics (with explanations) that spell out these problems .
Here’s a simple image that demonstrates a good interlinking strategy. Then go and examine the canonical solution – looks like the stuff of good information professionals to me!
Of course, alongside the need for good search engine optimization is the growth in search functionality and growth in search engine options. Google has some new features that have been tested in the past months. Google wants to expose some advanced search options that allow you to refine the results without opening a new page. The options are available in a sidebar that’s collapsed by default, but it can be expanded by clicking on “Show options”.
You’ll be able to restrict the results to forums, videos, reviews and recent pages. There’s an option that lets you customize the snippets by making them longer or by showing thumbnails, much like Cuil. Google wants to make the process of refining queries more fun and exploratory by adding a “wonder wheel” of suggestions.
Maybe I’ll just stop thinking and wander right off and do some Semantic Web Shopping!
What? more issues to consider? not my move anymore? ….. massive change is pushing us into a 21st century information maze.
I have no time to write a blog post..but I must register my contribution to Ada Lovelace Day – something new in my repertoire!
March 24th is Ada Lovelace Day – and since I figure it is just past the 24th in some parts of the world, I am not too late! Ada Lovelace Day is a great chance to honour women who excel in technology environments. For me this is important as I know what a ‘bashing’ we can get for our views and inputs at times
Ada was clearly a wonderful innovator, and visionary thinker. I am sure there are many many of them in the world, though it’s magic when you know someone personally.
Janet Clarey has a fabulous list in her post Role Models in Educational Technology on Ada Lovelace Day. I found some new people for my PLN.
But wait – what about my special mentions? People who have had a significant impact in my life? I am going to stick to Australian women – next year – the world!
The person I encountered via the intrawebs, and then met in real life, and who inspired me to think big and go virtual was of course our very own Jo Kay (aka Jokay Wollongong). Founder of Jokaydia, she is a design, educational technology and virtual worlds magic woman who we could never do without. Thanks to her we have the wonderful Islands of Jokaydia, which provides us heaven ‘in world’ for all our professional fun and learning needs. Click here to teleport to the jokaydia Landing Point (SLurl).
Not long after I encountered Jo Kay in my learning journey, I also had the good fortune and injection of inspiration from another Australian researcher who specialises in Digital Identity and Virtual Worlds.
For her day job, Angela Thomas (aka Anya Ixchel) is a senior lecturer in English and Arts Education and her research interests include digital cultures, new media literacies, multimodal semiotics and digital narratives. Don’t think she stops there! Check out her books, her research, her developing virtual projects – and if you are lucky catch her for a little virtual shopping or second life experimentation. You really should visit Angela’s Virtual Macbeth project too!
But alongside these wonderful women, I have also come across a host of others that have also greatly inspired me. I would love to share pictures for all of them with you. Not going to happen!
So here are their names and links to their work. They are no less important to me, and I count them all as friends and sources of inspiration. Thank you to you all!
Kathryn Greenhill at Librarians Matter, superb emerging technologies librarian
Frances Manning at HFS Conversations beating the drum at her school
Marita Thomson whose StoryLines I love!
Kerry Johnson, that inspiring new Australian at Neotenous Tech
Julie Lindsay, that wonderful Australian abroad at E-Learning Journeys
Danielle Miller, CEO of Enlighten Education, creating shiny girls at the ButterFly Effect.
Suzette Boyd, of Scotch College, who has inspired the best every library website I know!
I am delighted to be in Cairns at a full day workshop organised by the Catholic Education office for the schools in this area. “Contemporary School Library Design” - the whole day is designed to help schools look at their school libraries and to build or renovate school libraries that meet the needs of 21st century learners.
The first session of the day to set the scene was provided by Kevin Hennah. Kevin is a wonderful inspiration to many in Australia, using design and marketing ideas to repackage school libraries. Many of our teacher librarians are familiar with his work, and have already made transformations to their libraries – with either a lot of money or on a shoe-string budget.
80% of your loans are generated by 20% of your collection. Yes!! Kevin urges us to weed, weed, weed. Don’t pride yourself on the size of your collection – pride yourself on the quality and presention of your collection. No question, part of Kevin’s focus is to remind us of the hugely relevant focus of reading and literacy that our school libraries MUST retain in the age of digital learning.
The trick of great ‘merchandising’ is to cater for kids needs. First impressions count! Remember your visit to Boarders? The presentation of so many ‘front facing’ books is essential, as our kids are so image conscious. We must market ourselves. We must entice. So grab the flavour of this conversation and make your transformations. Kevin always talks about “prime real estate” - don’t put a big table in that space, with a tablecloth and some books. Think Borders and think clever.
School libraries have way too much signage. Return shute? make a list of all the things that frustrate you! Make sure you have lots of front facing books – and put them on the ends of your aisles.
Kevin loves the creative use of slat wall. But remember, to be careful what acrylics you buy and where you place these display units. Image Plastics are developing excellent perspex holders.
What we are aiming for – walking into a school library and thinking “wow”!! First impressions are so important! Retail book stores provide a powerful marketing ideas – take the ‘good stuff’ from retail, and package it into 21st century pedagogy. Use the base line of clean design, and a colour palette that allows you to change in the future.
Remember, don’t display your magazines by displaying them in alphabetical order!
My view for the future? I believe we have to renovate to innovate – to make books and digital engagement our prime focus, to sell our passion for learning by ‘marketing’ to each new audience! Clean, creative, gorgeous!
Kevin’s message is to take the flavour of possibilities – and translate them into your own setting. Make an impression – don’t be generic. Think outside the circle of traditional libraries. Be bold – and don’t let your teachers hold you back. Yes, it’s about change, and pedagogical innovation. Love life, love your library, love change!!
This slideshow provides the framework for a discussion about how educators can model ‘creative integrity’ and how they can assist students to leverage the Creative Commons as content creators.
Show this to the art and music department!!
Reported by Fiona in Information Visualisation and Data: a Music Example:
Promotion for this year’s Grammy Awards focuses on some very eye catching visualisations of some of the nominated artists, made up of the names of some of their favourite songs. An amazing mashup between structured data, tag clouds, and the style of ASCII art you might have made a decade or two ago. Click through to the article to view some examples of the ads (no CC/free versions available). The LA Times has more about how they were created -
“A Grammy spokeswoman says each artist was asked to give the Recording Academy 10-20 songs that influenced or affected their life and career. The lyrics and song titles are then featured in the print and television ads.”