July 2010

Summer Reading Program Photos now on Flikr

Wow! Look how many books kids in Brussels read! 392

2010 Brussels Summer Reading Program Photos

Digital Scrapbooking and Photo Album Tool

Just wanted to share this great website with everyone!

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Digital Scrapbooking and Photo Albums

If you are into scrapbooking or just want a creative way to share your photos, try MixBook. With MixBook, you can:

- Create albums from your photos

- Collaborate with friends to combine photos into a single album.

- Share your finished album on Facebook and Flikr.

- Order an old-fashioned hard copy of your photo album.

Online Digital Albums are Free to make and share. MixBook charges to produce a print version for you.
Mixbook also allows you to create personalized cards and stationery.

* Create Video Presentations with Animoto

Animoto is a fun and easy to use tool for creating video presentations. I created an educator's account so teens could experiment with it to make video book reviews. You can also use this tool to create video presentations from your photos to share with friends and family. The account allows others to register for a free, all access account linked to mine. See the teen page for more information on how to set up an account.

For Teens Only

Here's a video book review I created:
Mare's War Book Trailer

Specialization vs. generalist

I'm really enjoying my YA Resources class this term. It's reinforcing my experiments with web resources (like this wiki), and giving me ideas to use with the Middle School Summer Reading Program. (See the info on Animoto on the Teen Page - too cool!) I'm reading as many of the books on the syllabus as I can manage and reading more books to Book Talk to the teens on Mondays. In the process, I'm learning what a huge task it is to keep up with what' being published to make good selections for the library. And in the focus on teens, some of the time spent on the Children's section is slipping. Which brings me to topic at hand…

I love watching the preschoolers ask for yet another book. I enjoy giving them space to be creative without there being a right way to do it (even if it means fighting Mom a bit to give them that space). Then there's the joy of watching an elementary school student excited to check out books because the partnership I helped set up with CYS lets them visit the library. Oh, and watching a group of 11-year-olds settle down to listen to me read a few chapters from The Tale of Despereaux, it's so satisfying. But then there is the chance to help Middle and High School students learn how to use the Internet effectively. It's SO satisfying to nourish a love of reading by finding them the rightbook. It's an age where one involved adult can make a huge difference! I've seen it with Girl Scouts and would love to broaden the scope of my involvement.

But how do I do both really well? I'm torn between the desire to each of them really well and the reluctance to give up working with the other group. I know there will always be small libraries (or libraries with limited budgets) where one person will be responsible for both areas. But will I always feel like I'm compromising both groups? And how do I choose which group to focus on? My preference changes depending on which group I'm working with at the time.

I suppose in the end, it will depend on where there is a job available - practicality trumps all sometimes. I suspect that the YA specialization may be slightly less common. Will it be easier to make a difference there? I don't know. Thank goodness I don't have to actually decide yet.

And now, back to reading The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. (Posted 1 July 2010 - Is it really July already?!?)

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