The True Adventures of a High School Librarian

The True Adventures of a High School Librarian

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Tracy Gargus Taylor: I Spy MakerSpace Activity



I just saw this post on Facebook's Future Ready Librarians Page and simply had to share.  

This was posted by Tracy Gargus Taylor:

I spent the last few weeks creating 3D and magazine collage I Spy boards and the rhymes/lists to go with each....

I used them today for the first time with k-6th grades. It was a huge success with classes....

I set up 4 areas in the room as centers. 

Each center had tables with two 3D “I Spy” boards, three collage type “I Spy” boards and 10 movie look and find posters. Each center also had a comfy area with a tub with 12 books (I Spy, Where’s Waldo, Can You See What I See?, Look and Find, Spot the difference, etc) and a bucket with 2 memory games and a Spot It game.

I had 4-8 kids in each center....they stayed in their center and used all of the items throughout class...with kindergarten I used the last 10 minutes as a whole group on the smartboard with an I Spy cd-rom game I got years ago from Scholastic.

I’ll leave the library set up this way this week and next and kids will go to a different center on their next visit (same materials just different things to find).

I think I’ll also use them for a family night next year....probably have them look at a board and write their own rhyme and list for it then switch with another family and try to find the items they wrote down.

Anyone have any other ideas to add to either the library centers or a family night?????


I also think it would be a great MakerSpace activity for the older, secondary ed students to create these for the younger, elementary ed students.

I absolutely love learning new ideas from my PLN! It's important that we all connect, share, learn & grow together!

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Monday, April 10, 2017

School Library Live Twitter Chats Are Cropping Up All Over!



School Library Live Twitter chats are cropping up all over!

by Nikki Robertson and Jane Lofton
cross-posted on both of our blogs
(See this on Nikki’s blog at The True Adventures of a High School Librarian

School librarians are incredible networkers, and many have discovered that Twitter is one of the very best tools for building and benefiting from a personal learning network (PLN). Those of us taking advantage of Twitter for our PLNs never go a single day without learning some new ideas from our colleagues and those in related fields. And, Twitter live chats offer a kind of “booster shot” of Twitter goodness in a short amount of time, typically an hour.

If you aren’t familiar with what a live Twitter chat is, here’s are the basics:

A live Twitter chat happens at an appointed/announced time. There is always a specific hashtag used to identify the chat. So, you can follow a chat by going to Twitter, searching for the hashtag, selecting Latest, and watching the tweets with that hashtag as people post. You join in by adding that hashtag to each of your own tweets.



Most live Twitter chats take place the same time each month or week. Each session will have a new theme or topic to discuss. Live chats typically have two moderators who prepare questions in advance and send the questions out during the chat. They start by asking everyone to introduce themselves. Then, they use Q1 for question #1, Q2 for question #2, and so on as a preface as they post the questions. The questions go out every few minutes. Participants start their responses with A1, A2, and so on. The participants can also interact directly with each other by responding to their posts. At the end, the moderators typically create an archive transcript of the chat so that people who missed the event or want to review it can visit a link and see the conversation.

We can't pretend that live chats are relaxing. They aren't! They are definitely a bit stressful, since you are going to see lots of tweets flying by at once while you are simultaneously trying to think and compose your own answers and comments. At the same time, they are amazingly stimulating, informative, and a great chance to interact in real time with your peers and discuss a topic of interest. We have connected with many new Twitter friends and gotten countless wonderful new ideas through chats. Just be prepared in advance that you can't read all the tweets in an active chat; you are bound to miss stuff, and that's okay. You aren’t even obliged to answer all the questions. And, feel free to lurk if you like until you are comfortable.

Educators of all kinds have started live Twitter chats in the last several years, for different subject areas, grade levels, states, regions, and much more. To find out about more chats you can participate in than you ever dreamed of, check Participate’s Chat site or Cybraryman’s Educational Hashtags. Until recently, though, there was just one live chat specifically for school librarians: #TLChat. The #TLChat hashtag is used by school librarians all the time as one of the main hashtags for targeting school library tweets, but, once a month, it becomes a live chat, now on the first Monday of the month at 8pm ET. And, joining it as a live chat platform recently are at least 10 state- or regionally-based school library chats. Here are the ones we know about:


And, ever generous as librarians are, we believe that all these chats welcome anyone. For example, you don’t have to be from New Jersey to participate in #NJLIBCHAT.

Also, notice that we listed the chats above in an embedded Google spreadsheet, since we are hoping we can add to it as we learn about more of them. Recently, Nikki created and sent out a Google Form in which she asked school librarians to share state school library Twitter chat sessions & hashtags. We got the information about the chats listed above from the responses to that form. If your state or region has a chat, and you don’t see it in the table, please complete the form and we’ll add it. And, if your state or region doesn’t have one, perhaps this will motivate you to start one!

We hope to see you at a chat soon!