But occasionally it is reenergizing to get out and have F2F (face to face) connections with people who are doing the same thing as I am. I had that opportunity this last weekend when I attended the Iowa Association of School Librarians in DesMoines.
I have presented before at IASL, but this time I had the big stage, with the goal of getting folks excited for the Sunday evening activities and Monday's keynote and concurrent sessions. When conference chair Denise Rehmke asked me to do the opening presentation, I was honored, but surprised and nervous. I'm just a K-12 librarian out here trying to make a difference, not doing anything that unique from colleagues around the state. But I spent a lot of time thinking about what I could share that might encourage others to get out of the comfort zones of traditional practice and start to be a little "fierce" to quote Joyce Valenza (a TL who has had a tremendous influence in how I think about my role).
Here is the slide show I created for the talk:
It has a lot of references to school libraries, but much of the underlying ideas could be applied by anyone trying to develop a personal learning network.
It was a scary, but invigorating thing for me to do, but the feedback I've gotten from my peers really means a lot. I hope that it encourages them to share and reach out, not just to their own students and staff but to the world of learners.
The highlight - getting about 100 school librarians up to dance to "Super Duper Library Dance Party" by LJ Mover and Shaker, Scooter Hayes.
Here are some of the sources and apps I referenced:
Knowledge Quest - journal of the American Association of School Libarians
Lakeview Elementary Media Center (links to grade levels and blogs)
Books, Balls and Blogs (SMS Middle School Principal's blog)
Cybraryman (administrators love him)
Tweetdeck (a way to organize your twitter feed)
SLJ article on "Appy Hour" - wardrobe fail!
Transparency is the new black (Daring Librarian)
School libraries: What's Now, What's Next, What's Yet to Come (a crowd sourced e-book)
Dewey Decimal Rap (Melvil Dewey)
Library tech geek tribe (order swag!)