Tag Archives: Collection Development

Resourcing the Australian Curriculum: Building Digital Collections – a review

See on Scoop.itTeaching through Libraries

“Many are questioning the need for libraries to have digital collections, as access to information appears ubiquitous. With the answer to every question seemingly a ‘Google’ away, it is a common misconception that libraries and library staff are no longer needed. .  .  .

The provision of digital as well as physical collections provides not only what users need and demand, but also provides and supports equity of access.”

Carey Leahy‘s insight:

Thanks Bris Catholic Ed and ResourceLink Crew!

See on resourcelinkbce.wordpress.com


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Filed under Digital Tools, Learning, Library/Librarians, Literature, Resources, School experience

Promoting new titles with Pinterest – via Alida & @joyce NeverEndingSearch

See on Scoop.itAboutBooks

This is how I made the Pinterest pages for my school. This is as close to a step-by-step process as I can give.  The best way to learn it is to play around with it yourself. Once you get the hang of it, it’s easy.

I started a Gmail account for my library and chose a password that I would feel okay sharing with other people.  I want my aides and any other librarian who might follow me in the position to take over the social media accounts. I use this account for every social media account I use for my library.

Carey Leahy‘s insight:

Step by step way to share visual information about books.  Handy!

See on blogs.slj.com

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Filed under Digital Literacy, Digital Tools, Images, Learning, Library/Librarians, Literature, Social networking

Are you buying steam?

Are you buying steam?.

In the July 2013 edition of Wired magazine, Jonathan Zittrain (Harvard Law Professor and author of The Future of the Internet) warns of the danger of censorship now we are moving to the cloud. Zittrain is worried about the possibilities of ‘censoring, erasing, altering or restricting access to books’, and argues that digital texts are ‘increasingly coming under the control of distributors and other gatekeepers rather than readers or libraries.’

An interesting article that may effect us quite unknowingly.

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Filed under Digital Citizenship, Digital Literacy, Digital Tools, Library/Librarians, Resources

Literature to encourage empathy

A guest post on ‘Media Specialists GuideIMG_1407‘ that has struck a chord for me is well worth the read.  It’s reference is to literature that could enable students to experience situations that may otherwise be unknown to them – and encourage feelings of empathy for people in challenging situations.  Wonder by R.J. Palacio certainly did that for me – it is ‘wonderful’!

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Policy for collection development

Completing ETL503 has taught me a great deal about the management of the library and the importance of a ‘published’ Collection Development Policy.'Covers' displayed1

With collection evaluation and then a current collection policy that is targeted to specific school goals, we will not only ensure the resource centre suits the needs of the school (curriculum & students), but also assist the finance committee with timely budget proposal approvals for the library.

The collection map process was enlightning. The number of non-fiction books older that 15 yrs on our shelves was alarming – alerting me to the desperate need to weed. I admit that before reading the literature on weeding I had no idea about the negative implications of outdated literature.  Now I realise that those books take up valuable time and space resources!

Copyright regulations and the Smartcopying website was another eye-opener. I’ll need to keep on top of these rules and as a result of discussions with my colleagues, I will make it my business to support their ‘knowledge’ in this area too.

The discussion processes and formal completion of the collection policy specific to my school, was that most complex application of theory into a practical document that I’ve processed to date.  I now more fully understand the importance of having an ‘official & presentable’ document to support the processes and practices that will be part of the everyday functioning of a particular library.

Images: Personal collection: Library scene.

Library Shelves5

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Providing Resources (Teaching/Learning)

In response to an ‘information search’ task set in ETL501, the following passage highlights some of the processes I considered to complete the activity. (Connected, but not included here is a completed table of student tasks and digital resource covering the full range of Bloom’s Taxonomy. Plan to ‘Tag-my-Doc’ for future access.)

ETL501 Forum entry July 2012

Searching for specific resources to support a unit of study covering the levels
of Bloom’s Taxonomy (& constructivist learning philosophy) requires key search terms – for reference books and online sources. Chosen resources need to be relevant to the task, varied in format and broad enough to enable individual choices within the unit tasks.

Yep, I ‘Googled it!’ With quite a bit of clicking to find relevant information within each site; I chose three that provided most of the pertinent information: http://www.environment.sa.gov.au ; http://www.sawater.com.au/SAWater/ and http://www.epa.sa.gov.au/ The sites chosen have diagrams (water cycles) and a video relating to conservation for visual learners. These sites have free access and I believe are ‘reputable’ – with Gov authority. A catalogue search (SCIS, school and Council library) could be carried out for possible print resources to supplement these, with purchases made if deemed necessary. The first 6 tasks are at the lower thinking level, while in the later 6 tasks, the students would use the knowledge they’ve gained to complete/construct their responses to compare, assess, design, plan, argue persuasively and finally assess human impact at a higher cognitive level. (Consider technologies suitable for the multi-modal presentation of task results.)
New teacher/ Geography Unit. Initial discussion to source some resources (ie. syllabus/ non-fiction) immediately and further search results could be emailed to the teacher and a collaborative planning session scheduled. Action would continue with a catalogue search of the school and Council libraries for print and digital items (to inform both teacher and students); a check online & on-shelf for reference material (definitions, maps, recent articles); brainstorm for possible research questions with a view to focusing on Australian Curriculum General Capabilities (Sustainability, Indigenous Perspectives) and consideration given to TL involvement in sessions where Inquiry-based learning is active; consider setting up an interactive wiki with information, links and tasks for students to access 24/7. In Ed Qld this could be within a Virtual Classroom or EdStudio within The LearningPlace. If it’s established that suitable resources are quite limited then further investigation for suitable purchases will occur in a timely manner.

 Images: Personal collection.

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Reflecting: Collection Policy

 Library sceneThe creation of a library collection policy initiated a professional discussion that reinforced in my mind the complexities of the role of a teacher librarian.  The TL needs to maintain relationships with both technology and people (Winzenried, 2010 p15).  Much of the accumulated ‘teacher’ expertise that one brings to the role is only evident when suitable resources are connected to a particular teaching-learning context at just the right time.  To ensure that ‘connecting’ ability continues to be valued, the TL needs to know the clients, the curriculum and the collection well.  Schools are dynamic places with ever-changing personnel and networks of connections to the world of information (Zagami & Finger, 2010. p201).  So too, is the information environment where the school librarian continually evaluates the collection against criteria – determining the relevance and usefulness of each resource – whether accessed physically or electronically.

By closely considering the attributes of an effective school library collection policy, I am increasingly certain that the development of a collection needs to be carried out by a qualified TL (Winzenried, 2010 p197).  One who is willing to continually refine their own learning network and skills in order to support and advance their colleagues and the worth of the Library Resource Centre.  That TL should be proactive in identifying and then supporting and guiding their client community toward improved individual and collaborative learning processes (Berger, 2007, p124).  Within their role as the resource manager, that TL needs to take the lead in articulating the LRC goals as they support the mission of the whole school.

Hughes (2011, p130) suggests: ‘There is now a massive amount of research which demonstrates the power of school libraries, appropriately supported by staffing and facilities, to enhance learning opportunities.’  He goes on to say that this is even more significant for students whose access to ‘learning opportunities’ at home is limited.  Each teacher in the school has the power to influence others – the TL however, is in a unique position to form relationships and build trust between all students, colleagues and the ‘collection’ to then positively influence learning for the benefit of all in the community.

The lists of criteria associated with resource selection, acquisition and then de-selection; the techniques used to evaluate the collection – were more extensive and complex than I had previously realised.  The cyclic nature of these processes referred to by Kachel (1997, p9) needs to be constant – to ensure the effectiveness of the LRC.  It became apparent that a TL needs great moral strength to act as an advocate for each member of your client community in order to achieve a balance of resources to be shared by all.  The many facets involved in effectively managing the resources of the LRC to meet the needs of the learning community (students and staff) and the curriculum – require continual reflection.  Rather than operating in isolation, I see the necessity to reflect within a team to continually evaluate the relevance of the collection.

I can conclude that an effective TL needs to be a reflective educator – committed to continually improving their practice by developing their awareness of themselves and others in their context, reflecting and taking action built on inquiry and thought, using all the resources at their disposal (Harada, 2010 p25; Haycock, 2010 p11; Yukawa, Harada and Suthers, 2007 p179).


Berger, P. (2007) Literacy and Learning in a Digital World.  In Hughes-Hassell, S. & Harada, V. (Ed) School Reform and the School Library Media Specialist   Westport, Conn: Libraries Unlimited.

Haycock, K. (2010).  Leading from the Middle: Building Influence for Change.  In Coatney, S. (Ed) The Many Faces of School Library Leadership.  Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited.

Harada, V. (2010). Librarians as Learning Leaders: Cultivating Cultures of Inquiry.  In Coatney, S. (Ed) The Many Faces of School Library Leadership.  Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited.

Hughes, P. (2011). Education revolution – a place for the school library? In Winzenried, A.   Visionary leaders for information.  Wagga Wagga, NSW: Centre for Information Studies, Charles Sturt University.

Kachel, D. E. (1997). Collection assessment and management for school libraries: Preparing for cooperative collection development. Westport, Conn: Greenwood.

Toor, R. & Weisburg, H. (2011).  Being Indispensible: A School Librarian’s Guide to Becoming an Invaluable Leader.  Chicago: American Library Association.

Winzenried, A. (2010). [et al].  Visionary leaders for information.  Wagga Wagga, NSW: Centre for Information Studies, Charles Sturt University.

Yukawa, J., Harada, V. & Suthers, D. (2007). Professional Development in Communities of Practice.    In Hughes-Hassell, S. & Harada, V. (Ed) School Reform and the School Library Media Specialist   Westport. Conn: Libraries Unlimited.

Zagami, J. & Finger, G. (2010).  Teaching and learning opportunities: Possibilities and practical ideas.       In Lee, M. & Finger, G. (Eds). Developing a Networked School Community: a guide to realizing the vision. Camberwell, VIC.: ACER Press.

Images:  From personal collection : Careyque2

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Filed under Leadership, Library/Librarians, School experience, Study response