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Maine Libraries Discussion List <[log in to unmask]>
Liz McMahon <[log in to unmask]>
Mon, 4 Mar 2013 11:13:09 -0500
Liz McMahon <[log in to unmask]>
text/plain (88 lines)
Hi Pam and others,

I'm very fortunate to have a very talented, energetic computer integration
specialist right across the hall from the library. We collaborate, learn
from each other and share our expertise with each other on a regular basis.
She continually reminds teachers and students about the resources in the
library and encourages them to use both the materials and myself as
resources. I'm very grateful for her willingness to work so closely with me
as it takes some of the pressure off in terms of keeping up with
technology! I've never been one to jump on the latest band wagon as I
prefer to see how it works and see the value and implications first.
Additionally, although the "new, new thing" might spark interest and be
"cool", how many of us have the budgets to pursue all the latest? Many of
us have a hard time spreading our shrinking budgets to purchase the print
and online resources we need. Libraries are the most cost effective
resource schools can have! However, as the article and others have pointed
out, our strength and value is in the expertise we bring to students and
staff in guiding their use of information. Today it is not necessarily WHAT
you know but HOW; do students and staff know how to find the information
they need and once they find it can they properly evaluate whether it is
going to provide what they are looking for. We have too long viewed our
digital natives as being so much more "tech saavy" than us digital
immigrants but I think that is extremely misleading. As the Pew report
indicated, they may know how to do a tremendous amount of cool, fun things
on their computers but can they find what they need, when they need it and
use it effectively and efficiently? And how do we get the teachers to give
us the TIME we need to teach these lifelong skills?  If we truly want our
students to be able to meet the standards we will need to be sure they are
exposed to the depth of knowledge that is available in a wide array of
resources, not just a few pages on a website. That is the challenge. To
make ourselves heard and our expertise sought after as a means of helping
students to not just meet their new standards but to exceed and become
proficient. Without us, the library is just a room full of resources. With
us, it is an unlimited world of knowledge and we are their guide.

Interestingly, as I'm writing this, a student stopped to check out a book
for a research project after spending the period working with both some
books and his laptop. His comment to me was that "...there's so much more
in books than on the internet..."!!! Wow....he got it!!!  One down, 547 to


On Thu, Feb 28, 2013 at 11:08 AM, Pamela Goucher
<[log in to unmask]>wrote:

> Here is a thought-provoking article from District Administration on school
> libraries and the challenges and opportunities faced these days. It is
> directed at administrators, so perhaps you might share with your admins.
> What struck me as I read this was the growing list of skills, professional
> development opportunities, etc. needed to keep up with changing
> expectations.  I'd love to hear from you all about what you see as
> professional development needs and (optimistically) how/where you have
> managed to acquire some of the new skills demanded of library media
> specialists.  It would be valuable information for planning here at
> DOE/MLTI and at the State LIbrary.  Feel free to email me off list or
> continue a dialogue right here.
> Pam Goucher
> Pamela Goucher
> Interim School Library/Technology Planning Coordinator
> Maine Dept. of Education
> 23 State House Station
> Augusta, ME 04333-0023
> 207-624-6897
> [log in to unmask]

Liz McMahon
Library Media Specialist
Messalonskee Middle School
33 School Bus Drive
Oakland, ME 04963
[log in to unmask]

"He who has a garden and a library wants for nothing."