July 25, 2014

Getting Hands on at ISTE’s Digital Age Library Playground | ISTE 2014

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For three hours at ISTE’s Digital Age Library Playground, teacher librarians excitedly milled from station to station, absorbing knowledge, connecting with colleagues, and exploring new strategies. At any given time, hundreds of people were not only taking in the presenters’ shared knowledge, but trying out the resources being discussed.

Fight the ‘Zombie Librarians’ | ISTE 2014

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Jennifer LaGarde’s sold-out ISTE presentation, “How to Survive the Zombie Librarian Apocalypse!,” struck a chord among teacher librarians. Her talk hinged on a statement she’d once heard: “There are only two types of librarians: zombies and zombie fighters.”

SisOps: Girl-Friendly Tech Programs

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New girl-friendly technology initiatives are challenging tech’s boys-only culture.

Self-Check Solutions | Product Spotlight

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Few things can be more frustrating to library patrons—or staff, for that matter—than a self-check system that’s ill-suited for its setting. But when such a system runs smoothly, it increases efficiency, protects materials, promotes library programming, and instills confidence in patrons, which translates into increased circulation and a staff with more time to focus on things like programs and services.

Build Better Robots with LEGO Mindstorms Education EV3 | SLJ Review

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“The EV3 is one of those toys that transcends consumerism and becomes a pathway into new kinds of hands-on production and learning for kids and adults alike,” writes Chad Sansing in our review of LEGO’s latest version of the popular Mindstorms robotics platform.

Multimedia Assessments: Tools for making dynamic audio-and video-based tests

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Video, audio, and images can help students gain deeper understanding of a question. Previously, struggling readers might have had assessment questions read aloud to him or her. Now, multimedia tools allow these students to take tests independently.

Kansas Boy Gets New Hand, Created at a Library Makerspace

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Nine-year-old Matthew is the owner of a brightly-colored prosthetic Robohand that was created in the MakerSpace of the Johnson County Library in Overland Park, KS.

Librarypedia: The Future of Libraries and Wikipedia

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The Wikipedia Library is an open research hub started in 2010 when Credo Reference donated 500 free research accounts to Wikipedia’s most active editors. Partnerships with HighBeam, Questia, JSTOR, and the Cochrane Library followed. Now, the Wikipedia Library is developing into a portal to connect editors with libraries, open access resources, paywalled databases, digital reference tools, and research experts. Two of the project’s leaders discuss the potential for collaboration between libraries and Wikipedia, as well as the new Visiting Scholars pilot program.

SLJ’s Top 10 Tech Trends for 2013

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Flexibility and personalized education: That’s what the learners of 2014 will expect from their libraries. We must be available everywhere, nimbly respond to students’ needs, and allow kids to learn in ways that suit them. It’s an exciting time. Here are the top trends for 2013 and beyond.