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K-12

We're All In This Together: Building Community in a School Library

Many arms, with hands touching in the center

As school librarians, we want our students and patrons to feel welcome in our space. We want to build community — and programming is a great way to do it.

The new American Association of School Librarians (AASL) Standards expressly address inclusivity in the standards with "Include," one of the Standards' six Shared Foundations. "Include" states that students, librarians and libraries will be able to “demonstrate an understanding of and commitment to inclusiveness and respect for diversity in the learning community.”

Deepfakes, Part 2: Resources for All Ages

Hands holding puppet strings

Last month, our blog provided an introduction to deepfakes, a technique in which artificial intelligence-based technology is used to alter or produce video content, tricking viewers into believing that something happened when it actually did not.

This month, we follow up with more on this important subject, including resources and programming ideas for all ages.

Changing Landscapes: Information Evolution

Two people pointing at laptop screen

Between the two of us we have over 45 years of teaching experience. (Yes, we are stunned by that, too!) From the beginning, our library programming has taught students to responsibly and critically select and evaluate their resources. It’s the very foundation of media and information literacy and a critical skill for students to master in their K-12 education. 

Star Wars Spelling Bee

Library workers dressed up in Star Wars themed costumes

In honor of Star Wars Reads Month in October, our library held programs related to the iconic movies. We capped it all off with a Star Wars Spelling Bee at the end of the month, at 4:30 p.m. on a Thursday.

We picked specific words related to the movies and provided example sentences related to the movies to provide context. The event ended with a costume contest.

Passive Doesn't Mean Boring: 5 Passive Program Ideas for School Libraries

Girls making bookmarks

Passive programs can be a great way to regularly attract students into the library without having planned, specific events. Pick a corner of the library that can be designated for these drop-by activities, set out the supplies and some instructions, and let it go! Here are a few of my go-to passive programs.

Group of girls making bookmarks

Tried-and-True Online Tools for School Library Programming

Picture of girl doing schoolwork on a computer.

If you've been on social media lately, you may have seen lists of educational resources offered for free or at minimal cost during the COVID-19 pandemic. These lists can be overwhelming, and many resources may not meet your school district's privacy guidelines. And what happens when the free resources are not free anymore? Can your library support the purchase that your students and teachers have come to rely upon? 

Not Just for STEM Class: Makerspace Programming & English Language Arts

A human figure made out of popsicle sticks with clay and a balloon

As librarians, we are passionate advocates for makerspace programming. We share with teachers and students how makerspaces engage and develop critical thinking and problem solving skills. Our school library has supported many makerspace programming events, from Makerspace Monday to our monthly Makerspace challenge.

Reel ‘Em In! Get Secondary Students Hooked on Self-Selected Titles

Hand selecting a book from several on a shelf

The American Association of School Librarians (AASL) share six Common Beliefs in their 2018 National School Library Standards. One that stands out to us is the belief that “reading is the core of academic and personal competency.”

"School librarians," the standards go on to state, "initiate and elevate and motivate reading initiatives by using story and personal narrative to engage learners.”

Not Too Cool for School: 5 Ways to Partner Up with Your School District

Back end of a school bus set against some trees and sky

A partnership between a public library and a school district seems like a no-brainer, right? After all, we both have the same basic goals when it comes to students: to create and nurture in them a love of learning. However, many libraries – particularly small, rural libraries – don’t actually have much of a relationship with their school district.

Deepfakes: What They Are, Why They Matter

An extreme close-up of a person's eye

With the 2020 election right around the corner, there is an Internet trend that should give angst to anyone who works with young people and/or information literacy.

It’s called a “deepfake,” and it is a technique in which artificial intelligence-based technology is used to alter or produce video content. Essentially, a deepfake is a video of something that looks like it occurred, but truly did not.

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