Category Archives: Uncategorized

Authentic Advocacy Through Teaching Research


The best advocacy is the kind that arises from the work you do to increase students’ learning. This idea is best demonstrated in the edWeb presentation I watched yesterday by Michele Luhtala, a well-known librarian from New Caanan High School in Connecticut.

Michele shared the culmination of four years of work she has been doing with English and Social Studies teachers to increase students’ success in the research process. Her assessment pieces are mind-blowing. Her webinar was entitled, Evidence-Based Advocacy: Using Data to Demonstrate Impact of Library Programs on Student Learning. Continue reading

SCHLIBTalk’s Links

Periodically, we all need a reminder as to where we librarians can subscribe and unsubscribe to SCHLIBTalk, Here is the link:

Emails from the past 15 years have been archived. Here is the direct link to the archives:

If at anytime either of these two links stop working, let me know and I will find new links.


January 2020 School Library CE Events

Note: The following events have been labeled as Professional Development (PD), Library Information (LI), Classroom Connection (CC), or Technology-Related (TR).

Share these webinar topics with your staff if they apply.

January Calendar

Jan 10: (1-2 pm) Three Steps to Thriving in Chaos (Effectiveness Institute) PD

Jan 13:  (4-5 pm) Leading Digital Learning: Successful Strategies for 1:1 Implementations TR

Jan 14: (1-2 pm) Presenting the 2020 Morris Award Finalists (Booklist) LI

Jan 14:  (1-2 pm) The Universal Way to Unlock Bold Change (InSyncTraining) PD

NOTE: You must open the remainder of the post to find more information and the links to these webinars. Continue reading

Tips for Writing a Successful Grant

In continuing the dialogue around grant writing, School Library Journal (SLJ) formed a panel of four librarians to discuss grant writing for a November 2019 webcast. That information was summarized in an SLJ online article. I am highlighting the tidbits here.

Lisa Mulvenna’s advice:

Tip 1. Before you search for grants or donors, decide on the problem you are trying to solve or the gap that needs to be filled. This step is your objective.

Tip 2. Work out your purpose and tentative budget.

Tip 3. Develop your why.

Tip 4. Develop goals and think about sustainability.

Tip 5. Find statistics that support the program or project’s purpose.

Tip 6. Determine its impact on the community.

Tip 7. What’s next after the grant has been used.

*************************** Continue reading

edWeb: The Professional Learning Network (PLN)

LibrariansLogicProfessional Learning Communities (PLCs) are popular in many schools, but I have found that Professional Learning Networks (PLNs) were also useful for me. is my favorite PLN.

They are a professional network that serves the education community by offering free webinars, presented by educators and education-minded individuals, on timely topics. I consider edWeb to be my personal learning community. Continue reading

December 2019 School Library CE Events

December Calendar

Dec 10: Getting the Balance Right: Social Media (Utah State Library)

Dec 10: Brain-based Presenting: Getting the Brain to Pay Attention (InSync Training)

Dec 10: Building STEAM Confidence and Creativity in Middle School (edWeb)

NOTE: You must open the remainder of the post to find the links to these webinars.

Continue reading

The Positive Force of Failure


If you haven’t read anything by George Couros, I’d recommend bookmarking his blog and finding 5 minutes to read his posts. He causes me to reflect on my own experiences in a way that encourages growth. Such is the case with his recent blog, “The Feedback of Failure.” Continue reading

November 2019 School Library CE Events


Nov 11: Cyber Security: Concerns, Strategies and Solutions for Schools (

Nov 12: How to Introduce Fun and Playful Stem Robotics in Your Afterschool Program (National Afterschool Association)

Nov 12: Voice Devices and Beyond in the Classroom (

Nov 12: Dishing Up Some Digital Citizenship (Future Ready Librarians)

Nov 13: Best Children’s Books of 2019 (Utah State Library)

Nov 13: Teaching Cybersecurity: What You Need to Know (

NOTE: You must open the remainder of the post to find the links to these webinars.

Continue reading


What would I have done differently in my teaching career if I had known about dysgraphia? This invisible disability is of particular interest as October is National Dyslexia Awareness month, and sometimes dysgraphia goes hand in hand with dyslexia.

Recently I read about dysgraphia in Edutopia, an online education website that shares “evidence and practitioner-based learning strategies that empower educators to improve K-12 education.” I learned that dysgraphia manifests itself in a student’s handwriting: inconsistent letter formation and problems with word spacing, punctuation, and capitalization. As these students move through school, they have trouble with writing fluency, floating margins and legible writing. I know that I had students that exhibited these traits. These students are oftentimes labeled sloppy, lazy or not detail-oriented.

Continue reading

Grow Your Graphics Collection!

Looking to beef up your Junior and YA graphic novel collection? Below you will find some authors that consistently have popular work, lists curated by ALA, YALSA, Common Sense Media, and more, and a list of some stand-out series and stand-alones that are great starting points for your collection.

Authors to watch:

  • Ben Hatke
  • Jarrett J Krosoczka
  • Jen Wang
  • Jennifer L Holm
  • Katie O’Neill
  • Nathan Hale
  • Raina Telgemeier
  • Shannon Hale
  • Ursula Vernon
  • Victoria Jamieson

Readers Advisory Lists: 

Highly Recommended Series and Stand-Alones:

  • Abigail the Snowman by Roger Langridge
  • Alabaster Shadows by Matt Gardner
  • American Born Chinese by Gene Yang
  • Amulet by Kazu Kibuishi
  • Berrybrook Middle School by Svetlana Chmakova
  • Bone by Jeff Smith
  • Castle in the Stars: The Space Race of 1869 by Alex Alice
  • Compass South by Hope Larson
  • El Deafo by Cece Bell
  • Emmie and Friends by Terri Libenson
  • Hilda by Luke Pearson
  • HiLo by Judd Winick
  • Jane, the Fox, and Me by Fanny Britt
  • Jellaby by Kean Soo
  • Knights of the Lunch Table by Frank Cammuso
  • Lost in NYC: A Subway Adventure by Nadja Spiegelman
  • Lumberjanes by Noelle Stevenson
  • Marble Season by Gilbert Hernandez
  • Mega Princess by Kelly Thompson
  • Narwhal and Jelly by Ben Clanton
  • Nightlights by Lorena Alvarez
  • Olga by Elise Gravel
  • Owly by Andy Runton
  • Pashmina by Nidhi Chanani
  • Phoebe and Her Unicorn by Dana Simpson
  • Princeless: Jeremy Whitley
  • Suee and the Shadow by Ginger Ly
  • The Big Bad Fox by Benjamin Renner
  • The Cardboard Kingdom by Chad Sell
  • The Chronicles of Claudette by Jorge Aguirre
  • The Dam Keeper by Robert Kondo
  • The Girl Who Owned a City by O. T. Nelson
  • The Last Kids on Earth by Max Brallier
  • The Time Museum by Matthew Loux
  • The Witch Boy by Molly Knox OStertag