The issues of the teacher librarians and para-professionals in California School Libraries. Please share your concerns, feedback and questions.

Saturday, June 16, 2018

Informational Webinar about setup for the K-12 Database project from the State Library MONDAY, JUNE 18 11am

The three providers for the K-12 Online Content project for California students -- ProQuest, Encyclopedia Britannica, and TeachingBooks.net -- will conduct an online webinar for school district administrators, librarians, technical coordinators, and others involved in the implementation components of providing access for students. Topics discussed:

  1. What’s happening and what content from ProQuest, Britannica and TeachingBooks.net will be available for the 2018-19 school year.
  2. How to sign up for access and what to expect once you’ve filled in the access form.
  3. If you have questions concerning authentication or what’s needed on the technical informational form hosted by TeachingBooks.net (but utilized by all three content providers), experts from the content providers can help get those questions answered.
  4. Training Overview. What’s available to you right now and where to find it!
  5. Q&A
Please add this to your calendar, or click on the "join the meeting" link below. This webinar will be recorded for future viewing.

Note from State Library coordinator Mary Beth Barber: This particular session is principally for administrators, IT staff, librarians and others responsible for the implementation of the technical aspects of these resources. And apologies for the short notice. Rest assured: the webinar will be recorded, and there is consideration of a duplicate webinar in the future closer to the beginning of the school year. We'll also be sending around an extensive list of "how to use the resources" training calendar later in the summer.

ProQuest and CA K-12 Overview Session 2
Monday, June 18, 2018
11:00 am  |  Pacific Standard Time |  1 hr 30 mins

Meeting number (access code): 717 219 802

Meeting password: 6kKScjKd

Add to Calendar
When it's time, join the meeting.

Join from a video system or application
Dial 717219802@proquestmeetings.webex.com
You can also dial and enter your meeting number.

Join by phone
1-408-792-6300 Call-in toll number (US/Canada)
Global call-in numbers

Can't join the meeting?

For more information about the webinar coordination from ProQuest: 
Rosemary Jarrell PhD, Customer Experience Manager-North America-West
ProQuest |
919 741 3959 | rosemary.jarrell@proquest.com

CSLA Awards Deadline Changed

The deadline for all the CSLA awards has been changed to June 30, 2018.  This link to the awards page will describe the award and link to the Google form application.  Any questions please email info@csla.net.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

2018-19 Awards
are now 
Deadline: MAY 31, 2018

CSLA Awards Program

California School Library Association selects winners of several different awards each year. Some awards are given to more than one recipient. The association also offers grants and scholarships. Some are sponsored by outside organizations.
To apply for an award, grant or scholarship please follow these steps:
  1. Explore all the options and determine which award/scholarships you qualify for.
  2. Fill out the appropriate form(s), which are linked below.
  3. Submit supplementary materials, if required
The deadline for all state-level awards, grants, and scholarships is MAY 31, 2018.
They will be presented at the Annual Conference on FEBRUARY 9, 2019, and recipients will be expected to attend.
Additional requirements:
Some of the awards, grants, and scholarships require the recipient to become an active member of a committee. You can find a list of the committees here. Some of the awards, grants, and scholarships require additional materials. You can send them to info@csla.net.

CSLA Awards

This award honors administrators with direct responsibility for a school or group of schools who have made influential, unique and sustained contributions to effective school library programs.
This award honors a person or group (not currently employed in the school library) who has advocated for school libraries within the past year.
This award recognizes and publicizes effective, collaboratively planned and implemented library units of instruction.
This award recognizes retired members of CSLA who have made outstanding contributions to school library programs and the Association over a sustained period of time.
This award recognizes a person who has made a positive impact for at least three years in a school library in a classified position.
This award honors a credentialed teacher librarian who, through the library program, directly affects students and teachers. The $400 award is funded by DEMCO, Inc. The award money may be applied to conference registration fees. transportation, and lodging.

This award honors a teacher librarian who uses technology as a tool for learning and collaborates to promote the integration of technology in the curriculum. This award is sponsored by Mackin Educational Resources and includes $1,000 for use in the winner’s library.Technology Award

CSLA Grants

This grant provides library furniture, supplies, and materials necessary to create a stimulating learning environment. The amount of the grant is $5,000 in products from Demco, Inc., the grant sponsor.
This grant awards $350 for a teacher librarian to attend the CSLA Conference for the first time. The grant money may be applied to conference registration fees. transportation, and lodging.

CSLA Scholarships

This scholarship recognizes the need for teacher librarians who reflect the diversity of California’s multicultural, multilingual population. Applicants must be from a traditionally underrepresented group and be enrolled in an accredited teacher librarian credential program. One scholarship of $1,500 will be given.
This scholarship recognizes the need for school library paraprofessionals who reflect the diversity of California’s multicultural, multilingual population. Applicants must be from a traditionally underrepresented group and be enrolled in a community college program for school library technical service certification. One scholarship of $1,000 will be given.
Northern Region Scholarships
Information forthcoming

CSLA Southern Region Teacher Librarian Scholarship IN HONOR of GENE WHITE and the CHILDREN of MARTHA DEAN
Recognizing that there is a need for professional Teacher Librarians, the California School Library Association, Southern Region, offers two (2) scholarships in the amount of $1,000 each. The purpose is to assist those persons seeking preparation leading toward a degree or credential to work as a professional in the school library field in a school setting

Thursday, November 2, 2017

Research about Student Information Seeking Behaviors; Implications for Searching Databases

Research about Student Information Seeking Behaviors; Implications for Searching Databases

by Dr. Lesley Farmer and  Kelli Van Velkinburgh

            This article is the first column provided by the CSLA Research Committee to help teacher librarians to know about current research that can help them as reflective practitioners to improve their library programs. Each month will focus on a specific topic of need. Next month’s column will target health literacy. If you have topics that you would like researched, please contact Dr. Lesley Farmer (Lesley.Farmer@csulb.edu) or Kelli Van Velkinburgh (kelli_vanvelkinburgh@cjusd.net).

            Librarians strongly encourage learners to use online subscription database aggregators (e.g., EBSCO, ProQuest, Gale) when looking for information. The reasons? Because the articles and other sources have been vetted by professionals, resources are indexed for more efficient retrieval, and several products are developmentally appropriate and also support typical K12 curriculum.
            Such databases mitigate students’ lack of expertise in evaluating the quality and appropriateness of information sources. Nevertheless, students need explicit instruction in search strategies. Furthermore, they need to see the advantages of using databases for their information tasks.
            The following research studies provide current insights in students’ information seeking behavior, and provide strategies for teaching effective search techniques, which can be applied to using online subscription database aggregators.

Mentzer, N., & Fosmire, M. J. (2015). Quantifying the information habits of high school students engaged in engineering design. Journal of Pre-College Engineering Education Research (J-PEER), 5(2), 22-34. http://docs.lib.purdue.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1108&context=jpeer
Students seldom evaluate the quality of online resources. They tend to rely on commercial and persuasive websites rather than informative or technical ones. Students do not search for broad categories of relevant information. Students are more likely to use search engines than use databases.

Hughes, H. (2013). International students using online information resources to learn: Complex experience and learning needs. Journal of Further and Higher Education, 37(1), 126-146. https://eprints.qut.edu.au/55064/1/InternationalStudentsExperiences-4May2011-FINAL.pdf
International students’ information behaviors reflect eight interrelated elements: students’ personal characteristics; the information-learning environment; interactions with online resources; students’ information literacy level; help-seeking habits; affective aspects; reflective responses; and cultural-linguistic dimensions. In using online resources, international students displayed developed information skills and less-developed critical information use.

Kim, S. U. (2015). Enablers and inhibitors to English language learners' research process in a high school setting. School Library Research, 18. http://www.ala.org.csulb.idm.oclc.org/aasl/sites/ala.org.aasl/files/content/aaslpubsandjournals/slr/vol18/SLR_EnablersandInhibitors_V18.pdf
The researcher tracked high school ELL students’ research processes, and found that by the end of their efforts, students had difficulty finding specific information, evaluating information, and summarizing it. In the middle of their efforts, they felt more competent; they did not have the big picture at that point. Students sometimes searched in their first language, especially if they did not know the English vocabulary, but they did not include the resulting resources in their final product. Students wished for guidance from someone who knew the assignment and the topic, and who could help them find background information, topical vocabulary, and specific information. They also wanted more time to research, and sample products.  Teaching ELL students how to seek and use information helps them learning English and the subject matter.  These students should also be supported in their practice of searching first in their first language, and their resources should be considered for their final project.

Yeh, Y., Hsu, Y., Chuang, F., & Hwang, F. (2014). Middle-school students' online information problem solving behaviors on the information retrieval interface. Australasian Journal of Educational Technology, 30(2), 245-260. https://ajet.org.au/index.php/AJET/article/view/478/940
Student self-monitoring and metacognition practices facilitate searching strategies. Otherwise, students can feel overwhelmed by the amount of online information, or settle for general information, or not organize the found information. Boolean use is not so important now because of search engine features, but the key words need to be relevant and specific enough to get good hits.

Knox, C. H., Anderson-Inman, L., Terrazas-Arellanes, F., Walden, E. D., & Hildreth, B. (2015). The SOAR Strategies for Online Academic Research: Helping Middle School Students. Handbook of Research on Technology Tools for Real-World Skill Development, 68-103.
Students need instruction and practice in constructing research questions, searching effectively, assessing resource credibility, and connecting resources. Middle school students need step-by-step strategies, which lead them to see themselves as efficient learners. Teachers also need to tell students that reading online differs from print reading; the former is more goal-oriented and focused on the specific task context. Online articles tend to be shorter; web features can be distracting.   The University of Oregon Center for Advanced Technology in Education created SOAR Toolkit (http://ssoar.uoregon.edu/) to help middle schools search for and use online information.
Strategy 1: use digital notebook to brainstorm questions and keywords.
Strategy 2: refine search terms based on results (get better match).
Strategy 3: examine URL for authors and institutions, domains, relevance.
Reading and recording information: reflect on understanding and ask self questions; record notes, create reference list, combine notes into an outline.

O'Sullivan, M. K., & Dallas, K. B. (2017). A collaborative approach to implementing 21st century skills in a high school senior research class. Education Libraries, 33(1), 3-9.
The authors outline search strategy steps: select a topic (give them time), concept map, formulate a research question, distinguish between keywords and subject headings, develop a search strategy, write the research paper, assess the process and product.

Cook, D. B., & Klipfel, K. M. (2015). How do our students learn? An outline of a cognitive psychological model for information literacy instruction. Reference & User Services Quarterly, 55(1), 34-41. https://journals.ala.org/index.php/rusq/article/view/5797/7301
     Researchers suggested five principles for structuring information literacy instruction: create a problem context, limit the amount of content, build a narrative, focus on deep structure, and practice deep structure through active learning. It is not necessary to dwell on learning styles in such instruction, but rather find commonalities among student learning approaches.

Bell, S. S. (2015). Librarian's guide to online searching: Cultivating database skills for research and instruction. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO. http://pcc-lib.pbworks.com/f/Bell10.pdf
This guides gives practical strategies for asking good questions and choosing a database.

So what are the take-aways from these research studies? Most important is the need for explicit instruction in how to develop a search strategy based on identifying the information task, formulating good research questions, brainstorming keywords and concepts, and getting background information (and associated specialized vocabulary). Guidance in locating relevant information should focus on specific, relevant databases and other vetted sources. Students need to understand and use criteria for evaluating resources, and should be encouraged to compare resources about the same topics. Students should also be taught metacognitive skills such as self-reflection, asking themselves questions about the sources as they examine them, and monitoring their efforts and results. 

SR4 Event: Orange County Book Festival

Each year on the first Sunday in October, the Orange County Book Festival is held at the Orange Coast College campus.  Section 4 (Orange County) Librarians met up to enjoy food and fabulous book-themed entertainment. 

This year’s headline event was Actor/Comedian Shawn Wayans who appeared on the Mainstage and took photos with fans afterwards.  

Children at the Illustrator’s stage learned how to draw a monster with A. J. Cosmo, author and illustrator of The Monster That Ate My Socks.

Both Scholastic Book Fairs and Mrs. Nelson’s Book Fair Company sold books at a discount.  It was a good opportunity to compare both vendors for planning your next book fair.  

You can look for news on next year’s event by following Orange County Children’s Book Festival on Facebook or checking out their website.  The Festival is free to the public and even includes free parking!
Cathy Short and Heather Gruenthal with Clifford at the Scholastic Book Fair Booth

Written by:
Heather Gruenthal
Southern Region President Elect
Teacher Librarian, LBUSD
Lindsey Middle School and Stanford Middle School
Twitter @hgruenthal