Saturday, May 28, 2011

Exciting times for school libraries in Australia!!

I am sharing a message from Karen Bonanno:

Well, what a week it has been here in Australia.

On Monday, the Chair of the House Standing Committee on 
Education and Employment tabled the report from the Inquiry 
into School Libraries and Teacher Librarians in Australian Schools
 — School libraries and teacher librarians in 21st century Australia.
It has been a long journey since March 2010 to reach this point.

The Committee has presented 11 recommendations for debate 
by the House of Parliament and we now enter into a three to 
six month response time.

In response to the release of the report I have been working with the 
Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA) and the 
Australian School Library Association (ASLA) to create a wiki
and a Facebook page (the link is on the wiki)
to enable parents, students, teachers, and 
everyone else who is concerned about the state of school libraries, 
to find out more information about this highly topical issue and to 
join in the discussion. I encourage you to share the wiki and the 
Facebook page with your colleagues, your family (every parent 
should be interested in this topic), your friends and anyone who 
is interested in school libraries.

I’d also encourage you to revisit the series of blog posts on 
school library advocacy
and to revisit the webinar presentation on 7 successful 
strategies to develop your advocacy toolkit.

Stay tuned as this will be an exciting time."

The report is delivered to my door!!

I am so excited 

to have received a copy of School Librarians and teacher librarians in 21st Century Australia from the House of Representatives Standing Committee on Education and Employment. If you did not receive your own personal copy it is available for download. This report is comprised of preliminary pages, 6 chapters and 4 appendices.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Australian Library and Information Week starts with the Inquiry report being tabled!!!

What is Library and Information Week
"We find stuff!"
We catalogue stuff!
We look up stuff!
We research stuff!
We know stuff!

Library and Information Week will be held from 23 - 29 May 2011.
Libraries across Australia can use this week as a focus to promote and showcase their varied resources and services through different programs and events to the community. The week 
provides you the opportunity to introduce new services or publicly canvas issues of importance regarding library and information services in Australia.

The School Libraries and Teacher Librarians in Australia report
has now been tabled in parliament for debate at a later sitting. The full report is at 

Chapter  6 is of great interest as it comprises the concluding comments.
Have a read:
There are eleven recommendations:
Recommendation 1
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
partner with all education authorities to fund the provision of a core set
of online database resources, which are made available to all Australian
Recommendation 2: IL Continuum
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government work
with the states and territories to develop a discrete national policy
statement that defines the importance of digital and information literacy
for learning in the 21st century, which can be used as a guide by teachers
and principals.
Recommendation 3
The Committee recommends that the Australian Curriculum, Assessment
and Reporting Authority include statistical information about the
breakdown of all specialist teachers, including teacher librarians, on the
My School website.
Recommendation 4
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
support additional initiatives to promote reading, such as a National Year
of Reading. The Department of Education, Employment and Workplace
Relations should collaborate with the Australian School Library
Association, Australian Libraries and Information Association and other
education stakeholders in developing these initiatives
Recommendation 5
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
initiate an Australian-based longitudinal study into the links between
library programs, literacy (including digital literacy) and student
achievement, including their impact on improving outcomes for
socioeconomically disadvantaged students.
Recommendation 6
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
support promotional activities undertaken by ASLA and ALIA that
demonstrate to the school community the valuable work that teacher
librarians are doing in respect of e-learning in their schools, including
those that highlight their leadership capacity
Recommendation 7
The Committee recommends that the rollout of the new national
curriculum, which is to be made available online, include a component of
training for teacher librarians.
Recommendation 8
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
commission a thorough workforce gap analysis of teacher librarians
across Australian schools.
Recommendation 9
The Committee recommends that the Minister for School Education,
Early Childhood and Youth, through the Ministerial Council for
Education, Early Childhood Development and Youth Affairs, establish a
national dialogue, including with tertiary providers, on the role of
teacher librarians today in schools and into the future. The dialogue
should include an examination of the adequacy of the pathways into the
profession and ongoing training requirements.
Recommendation 10
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government,
through the Ministerial Council for Education, Early Childhood and
Youth Affairs, discuss ways to enhance partnerships with state and
territory and local levels of government to support school libraries and
teacher librarians.
Recommendation 11
The Committee recommends that the Commonwealth Government
partner with ASLA and ALIA to produce a document that showcases
some of the successful partnerships and programs between school
libraries and other libraries, and joint-use libraries. The document
should be made available to government and non-government
education authorities and school principals.

In Chapter 6, which contains the concluding comments, I thought that this point below would be a great one to get motivated and moving with-especially as the 2012 Year of Reading has already been announced and organised. 

6.23 One very meaningful way to get the momentum started may be to establish a National Year of Reading program with a range of coordinated activities, supported by all levels of government, the peak library bodies, principals and teacher librarians alike.

The Inquiry Report tabled in the House today can be the beginning of change, if a genuine national discussion is initiated and concretely supported.

Recommendation 6 could be the best of all.  There is much ASLA and ALIA can do with extra funding and staffing to “demonstrate to the school community the valuable work that teacher librarians are doing in respect of e-learning in their schools, including those that highlight their leadership capacity.”  This could see real changes in understandings if well funded. 

From: "Our initial response to the Inquiry Report recommendations" post by The Hub

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Kidjutsu- Free Online Comics for Kids

Kidjutsu [kid-joot-soo] has a terrific collection of free Comic Books that can be viewed full screen with out ads. Lots of interesting comics that kids will enjoy from many genres. Browse through by age or genre (elementary-high school). The books can also be embedded on your site. Sign up for a free account. Click on the comic books below to see what some of them are like.

Sign up for a free account to read the best free comics on the web. 
Read, browse, vote, and comment on your favorite kids comics.
Kidjutsu is a site that collects kid-friendly webcomics and displays them using an easy-to-use online comics viewer.
Kidjutsu offers a variety of genres and suits a range of age levels. Try these and see what you think.

Comic powered by Kidjutsu

Resources for using comics to teach core subjects

Friday, May 6, 2011

One Community | Rugby League Reads and other educational programs.

"Research has now shown that Rugby League Reads is having a dramatic impact, increasing young readers' engagement and motivation towards reading lessons and increasing voluntary reading by students.

In 2011, Rugby League's One Community will publish three new issues of the Rugby League Reads Magazine, in Term 2, 3 and 4. Also on offer again are the Rugby League Reads readers, a set of eight home readers for the younger years.Rugby League Reads Logo
Another exciting development for Rugby League Reads is that it is now featured in the NSW Premier's Reading Challenge, which will allow students to progress through their Reading Challenge while covering English Syllabus outcomes and enjoying Rugby League-based texts.
To order Rugby League Reads visit, click on the Rugby League Reads icon and then select Readers (set of eight for emergent readers) AND/OR Magazines (kit of 30 magazines and a CDROM of Teacher activities).
The Magazine kit and CDROM is a #free_resource available to schools however there is a $19.95 cost to deliver the box to your school, plus a $5.50 fee. 

The Rugby League Reads magazine includes a range of texts taught in Primary Schools including factual and literary texts, with the focus on Rugby League as key reading content.  As well as the magazine, complimenting teacher activities and resources for each club’s text type has been created.  The activities will be underpinned with philosophical frameworks and theories commonly used at schools, including Bloom’s Taxonomy and Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences as well as incorporating key Boy’s Education strategies and research.
The magazines are professionally produced and the text in the magazine features NSW Foundation Writing, the model of handwriting taught to students in schools."

David Gallop Trish Crews
Chief Executive Director of Community, Culture & Diversity

Teachers I recommend you also visit the Teacher Zone  Rugby League's One Community are regularly launching new educational resources that they’d love to keep you informed about. They’re also looking for feedback on our resources and finding out what works and what doesn’t to engage our kids at home and in the classroom.

Dream Believe Achieve Logo

One Community, in collaboration with the University of Technology Sydney’s Australian Centre for Child and Youth, have launched an education resource called 'Dream, Believe, Achieve'.
The program is a teaching resource suitable for the high school curriculum in personal development and health and complements the NRL's 'Eat Well Play Well Stay Well' Primary Teachers’ Resource. EAT WELL, PLAY WELL, STAY WELL. (EWPWSW)
Launched in 2009, Eat Well, Play Well, Stay Well was developed to engage and encourage kids to build healthy lifestyles and make positive choices.
The kit contains a DVD and lessons plans suitable for primary classroom lessons in the personal development and health curriculum area. Aimed at engaging students, the activities are action orientated and include themes from the world of Rugby League.
They also offer an education program to excite and inspire all Australian children
Learning with League is a primary school teaching resource written by the NSW Deparment of Education and mapped for use in Queensland and Victoria.
Learning with League
The resource covers all stages of primary school and incorporates lessons and practical activities in the key learning areas of human society and it's environment and personal development, health and physical education.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

National Simultaneous Storytime is just around the corner...

Join in the 

National Simultaneous Storytime is an important annual national literacy campaign that guarantees more young Australians will 'Get Reading'. This year, reading takes place on Wednesday 25 May at 11am AEDT and we would love it if you could join us by sharing 
"Feathers for Phoebe" by Rod Clement, a wonderful Australian tale about self-esteem, self-acceptance and learning that appearances aren't everything. For more details:click on the image below.

 About National Simultaneous Storytime

*   PowerPoint and PDF versions of "Feathers for Phoebe" will be made available to registered participating sites on 24 May (ie. the day before the event) to assist with presentations to large groups.

 *   Podcasts and Interactive Whiteboard Activities will be made available to registered participating sites on 24 May to assist with NSS activities and participation by people with hearing and vision impairments.
Great Ideas for Your NSS Event
Australian Library and Information Association
ALIA would love lots more schools and school libraries to register for this event and to participate – so far this is who we have