The Library Voice

The Library Voice


I feel like I have hit the jackpot of sources! I love the statement of this blog!

Shannon McClintock Miller is the following:

“…teacher librarian and technology integration specialist. She was the K-12 district teacher librarian at Van Meter Community School District for 8 years. Shannon now speaks and consults around the world on education, librarianship, technology, social media, and making a difference in education and the lives of others.” The cherries on the top of this jackpot is her location is Denver, CO. my old home state and “Shannon is a member of ALA, AASL, IASL, ILA, ISTE, SIGMS, ASCD,and Iowa Student Learning Institute Board of Directors” and currently I live in IA. I have just become a follower of The Library Blog.

Topics include:

Instagram, Materials for “Endangered Species Day”, “Hot Books For All Our Summer Reading!” with titles such as The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie, Booked by Kwame Alexander and the Nightingale by Kristin Hannah (one of my absolute favorite authors!).

Shannon also has Pinterest with boards for “Hot Books to Read This Summer.. Little Readers and Elementary, Young Adult Readers and Adult Readers which covers all the readers in my family. I am smitten with this blog!

She was also chosen as a “Movers & Shakers 2014” supports and uses Harmony Projects with Cantata Learning-“…creative, musical and engaging projects to get your students and school community connected globally.”

She also has a “friend and &student blogging partner who writes, “Technology-From a Kid’s Perspective!!! Meridan’s Little Voice which would be a good one to look into also.

Shannon also has Symbaloo Webmixes! As I look over the contents of her Blog Archive I know what I will be on her blog finding all sorts of activities to  do this summer  with my son. This site is overflowing and then some with materials for parents, educators and teacher librarians. I am super glad I checked out this site listed on the top teacher librarian blogs. Her Twitter following is approximately 27, 325 and now I can see why. I am in reading and resource heaven with this blog!

From now on my PLN sources will have to meet the standards of this site. I aspire to become the same quality library professional as Shannon.



Education Technology Insights April 2016 K12 Solution Special

Education Technology Insights

I was directed to this online publication while reading an excellent article by Doug Johnson about the 1:1 initiative.

The editorial poised two very important points:

“…the emphasis is on personalized learning and adaptive technology-the byproduct of the increased focus on the student.”


“…students having access to more digital learning options than ever before.”

Therefore this edition focuses on “The 10 Hottest K12 Solution Providers” to help “stakeholders in the education sphere take meaningful decisions while implementing technology solutions.”-Tina Rosen, Editor-in-Chief

I selected an article by Candace Threadgill, Director of Information Technology, Klein ISD called, Future Ready Leadership in K-12.

Leadership in K-12 Page 34

Threadgill proposes: Fostering and Leading A Culture of Digital Learning Within Our Schools, Helping Schools and Families Transition to High-Speed Connectivity, Empowering Educators through Professional Learning Opportunities, Accelerating Progress towards Universal Access for All Students to Quality Devices and Providing Access to Quality Content and to achieve each of these things the following topics need to be addressed or focused on:

“We work together to protect student privacy and to teach students to become responsible, engaged, and contributing digital citizens.”-Threadgill

She also puts an emphasis on the making sure the “district’s technology infrastructure” is able to “ensure broadband classroom connectivity and wireless access.”

Providing learning opportunities for teachers and teacher librarians will only “effectively leverage learning data to make better instructional decisions” according to Threadgill. I would also add the training to keep up with changing technology is always going to be a positive outcome for TL’s, students and staff.

As for “universal access” it is best acquired by the use of “quality devices” which will in turn maximize “safe and effective use of technology so student have opportunities to be active learners, creating and sharing content not just consuming it.”

The content goal for Future Ready programming is “high quality digital content that is aligned to college and career ready standards..”

I absolutely agree the most with Threadgill’s point: Today children are regarded as digital natives and the assumption is that they know how to use technology to acquire information to support and enhance their learning experience”which only points to the need for Teacher Librarians to be their guides.

Threadgill suggests “A Future Ready Leader has the ability to pull together the vital resources and actively collaborate with the community, parents, business partners and staff to transform their district into a model of education.” I wonder if she realizes that she just summed up the qualities and skills of Teacher Librarians.

This magazine is a great find. Technology and being a Teacher Librarian work hand in hand and having a source that combines the two is a wonderful resource.





Who’s Who of Teacher Librarian..


So I wanted to get some more information about becoming a Teacher Librarian so I thought I should seek out some input from the trenches so I visited the following site:

It is the “…top school library blogs ordered by website popularity metrics and social media engagement including the number of followers on Twitter” how awesome is this site.  I wasn’t at all surprised to see the Unquietlibrarian listed just not in the number 2 spot.

So I thought I’d take a gander at who is number one. Which is The Blue Skunk Blog-Leaving readers confused at a higher level since 2005.

I love the explanation of the name of the blog:

Oh, Blue Skunk? As I understand it, early explorers attempted to give this part of Minnesota the Lakota name for “blue earth” – mah-kah-toe. Somehow this got changed to man-kay-toe, the Lakota word for “blue skunk.”

I like the image and the lesson about how easily things get lost in translation.

The Blue Skunk was started August of 2005.

Also on The Blue Skunk site is this of the creator and his Mini Bio:

Doug Johnson is the Director of Technology for the Burnsville-Eagan-Savage (MN) Public Schools. His teaching experience has included work in grades K-12. He is the author of nine books, columns in Educational Leadership and Library Media Connection, the Blue Skunk Blog, and articles published in over forty books and periodicals.

The first blog post that caught my eye was a budget tip from Johnson from From The Indispensable Librarian, 2nd Edition, Chapter 8 “Budget” about making sure you have a list of items that can be bought with small leftover end of the year money other departments are trying to use up. Budget Idea

The second post that caught my eye was, How did you use your computer in school today? – Home – Doug Johnson’s Blue Skunk Blog

The post has a great information on the new question we parents will be asking their kids which is “How did you use your computer in school today?” instead of “How was your day?” I can super relate to this question because my high school junior was able to have a Chromebook this school year thanks to the 1:1 initiative.

Johnson points out 3 main goals of the 1:1 initiative are to: use the “Learning Management System” to “access the resources” thus replacing textbooks and saving on paper by having syllabi available on the Chromebooks, also “Student Productivity” which is encouraging students to be creative with their academic projects, not just a word processing paper but creating a video with graphics, text and sharing their topic with others and lastly “Student Collaboration” which is not just submitting the assignment to the instructor it is working with other students in other districts or another country for peer review or on a group project using Google docs.

That way when students are asked “How do you use your computer today? they are able to answer:

“I edited a video explaining a science concept.

I took a quiz that showed I could advance to the next unit.

I collaborated with a student in Spain on a project.

I read an article that was written at my ability level. ”

The focus is not which laptop the kids are using it is more about what they are using them to accomplish and create.

I now see why The Blue Skunk Blog is number one. It is because of the great resources, suggestions and tips he shares with educators and teacher librarians. This is a wonderful site to check for questions about being a Teacher Librarian.




New Tools-Symbaloo

Thanks to a great group project “HS Teachers-Sexuality” I was able to create my first Symbaloo and help a classmate create their first one also!

I recommend using Symbaloo for Resources since its a neat and tidy way of putting all the sources you’ve used and a easy way to get readers to the information. It is short, sweet and simple for all to use. Take a quick peek at this nifty way to list sources/information.


“Make the web tell a story”

I am in love with this great new tool Storify. Thank you Professor for this great resource. Below is the link of my Storify which is about my experience in trying to decide if my son should start Kindergarten in the fall or be “redshirted” for a year and complete a Jr-kindergarten program.

I especially like this tool because I was able to add photos and sources SO much easier with the tool bar on the right. It is very user friendly and in a format that is easy to rearrange after a bit of experimentation.

The best part of Storify is that each user is really creating a story and being able to keep that goal in mind it was easier to think of a beginning, middle, end and update as well as add resources to my Storify. It also has great features for publishing to different social media and immediate responses of “views” and “likes”.

Storify-Kindergarten where 5 is just a number



This week’s post is to correct/update/ expand on the prior posts that were recreated in haste to meet a deadline and now need a bit of finesse.  The following questions were asked :

What about Buffy’s work inspired me? What is the take-away from her post? How will it influence my future as a library professional?

So let’s revisit Buffy whose credentials/professional resume and blogs are astounding.The take-away from the instance I picked when Buffy  is how her focus was on the students as well as thinking of how to work with teachers. To recap Buffy was working with a teacher on a project and the teacher fell ill. Buffy and the substitute were not only able to complete the project which was


  • “She (teacher) needed to have small seminar discussions with students. (And)
  •  She needed for students to have some instruction on EasyBib and research databases for a project in which students are investigating issues related to social media.”


Those goals were met and Buffy was able to use the student’s feedback to create a Research guide to help the students for future projects.

I appreciate Buffy’s accomplishments and her focus on the students, I am most impressed by the following statement, “We took time to talk about each student’s challenges as I wanted to be sure to validate and honor each area of concern.” Buffy was also thinking about collaborating with teachers, “The feedback also helped me collect informal data that might help me sway teachers to build in more time for topic selection with activities like reading frenzies or Think/Extend/Challenge.”

Which are also two topics I need to look into further-reading frenzies or Think/Extend/Challenge.

I would like to model my future librarian behaviors after this example of how Buffy used her skills to assist the teacher, the students and improve her librarian skills. Buffy pointed out her hindsight moment that she could have had the idea for the collaboration to produce the outcome that occurred “on the fly”.

the Next question was:

Why and how will you use Padlet?

I have yet to explore/create my own Padlet. However I was introduced to it by my classmates/group mates as a great way to list our Resources for our Middle School Makerspaces presentation.

Middle School Library Makerspaces

Collaborate Link -Recording #16

How does your mentor inspire you and inform your sensibilities about future work with teachers and students?

My mentor is excited to share new technologies and ways to help her students. She has worked with students with their yearbook creation, talent show and makes many displays of their artwork.

Home page has search engines such as Google, an Online Database, a Virtual Library, and also practice tests, current events, the library calendar and Microsoft Office lots of great resources for students, parents and staff.

The Reading Tab is called “Reading Rocks”and the sites are broken down by reading levels, book awards, book programs such as Scholastic, CO Blue Spruce YA and NoveList K-8 and Book Stores.

The Projects section is called Power Projects and has Science, Language Arts, Math, Literacy, Social Studies and other categories all broken down for students to explore.

“Radical References” lists: Almanacs Statistic Info, Atlases and Maps, Biography Sources, Country  Sources, DataBases, Dictionaries Thesauruses, Encyclopedias, Magazines, Newspapers, Primary Sources, Primary Sources and TV.                                             

Homework Help lists the following:

Homework Hotline (e-mail)

Ask a Librarian-Mesa County Public Library

Ask Colorado-Colorado Virtual Library

Discovery School-J Pinchbeck’s Homework Helper and Study Web                            

Just for Fun shares the following categories: COOL Websites, Games, Puzzles, and Book Websites.

This website was developed by my mentor who wanted to make sure students have access to all sorts of information, materials and resources. She worked with a website builder to get her vision in a user friendly format. To assist teachers in the Power Projects section she made this note: “In order to do “Our Best Work Everyday” use the websites that have been suggested and reviewed that align with curriculum needs and standards.”






“The Annoyed Librarian is possibly the most successful, respected, and desirable librarian of her generation.She has no other interest than to bring her wit and wisdom to the huddled librarian masses yearning to breathe free.The Annoyed Librarian is a free spirit and you are lucky to have her.”

I enjoy reading her opinion of so many different library topics.  Her blog is partnered with The Library Journal.

I hope to discover and add more blogs to this section.