Monday, July 1, 2013

#ALA 2013 Friday June 28, 2013

On Friday, I went to 2 pre-conference sessions.
One was titled: COMMON sCOREs: Instructional Partnerships that Deliver Success.
It cost $79 - $224 depending on if you were a student - a non-member.
The description was: What is the core of 21st-century school librarianship? How does OUR core relate to the Common Core State Standards and other state standards? What are the skills, dispositions, responsibilities, and self-assessments we can apply to co-achieve uncommon success? This preconference will provide strategies for demonstrating the school librarian’s central role in the academic program through practicing instructional partnerships to ensure success for K-12 students, teachers, administrators, librarians, and for the school librarian profession, too.

This by far was the best session of the conference! They started their session on a good note with their "logo" being this Wordle (right).

They had a lot of real world examples, including ready to go lesson plans and collaboration ideas for a variety of elementary school research projects. They explained their ideas and who they were, they had us brainstorm what was important to share and how to share it to be an instructional leader, along with how to think of the stakeholders (students, educators, administrators) and include points for all. We discussed and shared our skills, responsibilities, and dispositions and they gave us ideas how to best highlight all of the above, or how to hone skills, etc, that we may be lacking. It was interactive and engaging!

For example, they had this glog (left, which is a screenshot, as I paid for the session, and assume they don't want it to be shared for free). It included live links to how they actually did each step, along with sharing the wiki that had the documents, presentations, etc. Awesome! I have a ton of ideas to share with my grade level teams, especially my 1st and 2nd grade teams. I also have a whole slew of ideas of how to turn this research project into centers that my students can use to learn the skill, even if we don't have the time or opportunity to fully collaborate. Hopefully, the teachers will be on board and willing to do some collaboration, but time may be our enemy, and we will do our best within our restrictions!

In the afternoon I went to a pre-conference session titled; Real World, Real Tools.
It cost $79 - $224 depending on if you were a student - a non-member.
The description was: Real World, Real Tools will help participants design ways to move their programs, facilities and pedagogy forward, making the best of, and expanding on, their real world situations by focusing on maximizing the impact of any school's most valuable resource, a trained librarian working in close collaboration with the overall instructional program.

This session was a little depressing and condescending. "They don't care." "They are not listening." "You need to show it in their language." <--- All direct quotes. The "they" that was referred to was the administration (principals, district officials, etc). Instead of giving actual ideas, they gave lots of anecdotal examples, which can be helpful, but all depends on your situation. Any suggestions from the audience were welcomed and then pooh-poohed in relation to the "real world." We also were asked for our ideas and to participate, but quickly realized we weren't really "encouraged." I enjoyed speaking with the other attendees, and while the presenters seemed knowledgeable, they needed a little more polish. This may also be because the morning presenters really made it look good... =) Btw, tried to find the website they gave us, and can't find it again...also didn't work at first in the session itself...will search some more to try and give some visuals (not helping their case...).


4 days at ALA. First of all, McCormick Place is Way. Too. Big. After 4 days in the convention center for 3 - 8 hours each, my feet are tired! Add to that carrying all the swag, and my body needs a massage!

I started on Friday with 2 pre-conference sessions. 
Saturday I went to see the exhibits, poster session, and one session.
Sunday I went for one session (and spent some time in the exhibits).
Monday I went in for a committee meeting (but couldn't find my committee...), went to the exhibits, and then went to a last session. 

I feel like my head is exploding and would love to go to Dumbledore's office and use his Pensieve... I have SO many ideas and hope I can get them all down and spread them out to help my staff in the coming school year!

So I will use this blog as a Pensieve! More info to come about all I learned!