Friday, July 29, 2011

My Head is Spinning

The BLC conference has been amazing. So much information and not enough time to process it.

Here are some random trends, ideas and thoughts:

Don't be afraid to let the kids fail.
We need to ask the questions that google can't answer.
There are three choices when a teacher hits a barrier at school: quit, complain or innovate.
No one learns through lectures.
Students should be problem finders not problem solvers.
The door to the classroom can lead to the world with simple technology.
Twitter, blogs, wikis, skype, etc are not going away. We need to embrace them.
We need to keep learning.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Tomorrow is a Travel Day

A friend of mine loves to travel and has a song that she sings for all her travel days. You really don't want me to sing it.

Tomorrow I jet off to Boston for the annual Building Learning Communities (BLC) conference hosted by November Learning. If you want to know which sessions that I am attending, you can follow here:

"The Building Learning Communities Conference is designed to have an immediate and long range impact on improving teaching and learning" through use of technology in the classroom. This conference is for all K-12 educators and beyond, so I won't be in rooms full of librarians.

I will post any interesting tidbits during the week. By the way, I can taste the lobster roll as I write this. Love the New England seafood almost as much as Louisiana's.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

I am Still Here

Just checking in. With school closed and ALA behind us, I have little to report. However, I am reading like crazy.

Tomorrow my adult book group is going to meet to discuss, The Help. I started it ages ago but put it down after a few pages. I grew up in the 60's in New Orleans with "help." My family had a housekeeper five days a week and a person who ironed and cooked for us five days a week. I lived the help. I don't think they were treated in the same manner as in the book, but I really don't need to read it. It was not a pretty time, and I would like to put it behind me.

So luckily I have a dining room stacked high with ARCs and new books that I picked up at ALA. I read Where Things Come Back by Corey Whaley. I loved this southern summer tale of a found woodpecker and a missing teenage boy. I wanted to take the characters home; I loved them so much. I read Possession by Elana Johnson. I wanted to like this futuristic dystopian story where the government brainwashes the people, but the story jumped from one scene to the next and one new tech gadget to the next so fast my head was spinning. I did not like it. My students were big fans of Gayle Forman's If I Stay. I enjoyed it too. We have an ARC of the sequel at school, and like the kids I am anxious to go get it to read the conclusion to the characters' stories.

I finally read the 2011 Printz award winner, Ship Breaker, by Paolo Bacigalupi. Now this is a dystopian novel to love. I loved Nailer, the main character, and his loyalty to those he worked with. I also loved that males and females were equal in society, and women held the exact same types of jobs that men held. A few minutes ago, I finished Ellen Hopkins new title, Perfect. It comes out in September. I love novels in verse and this was not an exception. This was my first time reading Ellen Hopkins. Since she is so popular with my students, I never had to read the books to promote them. They fly off the shelves all on their own.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Check Out YALSA Blog Post about Taylor Teens

This blog post gives a detailed account of the panel at ALA on which two of my students spoke. You can find the post here: I was so proud of them.
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