Monday, May 01, 2006

TLA Conference Notes: Day 1, Session on Thinking Outside the Box

Title: "Teaching Outside the Box"
Presenters: Heather Lamb, Irving ISD and Carolee Wilson, Mansfield ISD

This presentation claimed to "provide an easy-to-use approach to integrating technology into library lessons" (from the conference program). Though it was mostly geared to school librarians, from the description, I figured I would get something out of it. When I got there, there was a good sized crowd; the room was almost full.
  • Library skills are not isolated. School librarians are teachers first. For them, planning with other teachers is "on the fly."
  • Discussed the use of centers (stations) and whole group instruction. Centers allow for peer teaching and collaborative learning. This allows for different learning styles. This does require preparation, but the students can then work independently, and their own teacher would be there as well. This can work by using a calendar of topics for each grade and planning with the teachers. This can also validate what the library does.
The presenters were enthusiastic initially, as school librarians can be, and it was nice to hear them speak about sample topics. However, while the ideas were interesting, the presenters were simply a bit too chaotic in the presentation. They would start one topic, then seemingly wander off, stop the powerpoint to fiddle with some other file, so on. Overall, it gave an impression of poor preparation. This is the session I mentioned in an earlier post that I actually walked out as it did not seem to rise to expectations.

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