Clairvaux Library wiki

Clairvaux Catholic Primary School teacher librarian Pam Niewman has shown what a fantastic educator she is by developing this brilliant wiki in a very short space of time.

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Pam explains

The wiki is the backbone of my teaching at the moment and it develops along with our needs. It’s very primary orientated and by no means complete  – it even gets some things deleted/changed at times. However, like a tap dripping slowly, Web 2.0 is filtering throughout our school . . .

We are still continuing small steps at a time.

The wiki is gradually becoming a very useful tool and something that the children are beginning to refer to and use on a regular basis. I often use it as a teaching tool in my lessons from Prep to Year 6. The children have a link to it on our MyClasses page and the staff have a link on their desktop.

The use of the wiki and various web 2.0 tools is beginning to filter throughout the school – in addition to work done in library classes, we’re up to about 90 children now who have engaged in some form of after hours activities as either creators or responders. I’ve had many emails – some requiring advice, some informing me of what they have done or sending me links, and some just communicating about things they are enjoying.

As more children are beginning to show an interest in displaying their work on the wiki I have decided to set up a Student Work page in addition to incorporating their work into other appropriate pages.

Recently some Book Week activities created some learning opportunities.

  • Children began emailing to be the first to answer a question a day about a shortlisted book. This question became hotly discussed as children tried to be the first online with the correct answer. (Side effect – Use of email improved particularly with younger children)
  • Wallwishers which I set up to discuss the Book Week theme and related activities created interest with the Seniors, who then began creating their own. These were posted on MyClasses and the wiki and the discussions began . . . and then more …and more . . .  They added videos and websites  (Side effect – online mentoring, classroom teachers added comments, good questions had to be developed)
  • Some children who saw my Book Week ToonDoo cartoon tried some out for themselves and emailed their link to me.
  • A few children found a link to Picasso Head on the wiki (via Schumann the Shoeman activities) and tried it out.
  • Book Trailers – Two Year 4 boys created a book trailer for visiting author Justin D’Ath. A number of children who saw this on the wiki now want to try creating their own.
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  • A year 4 girl wrote and published on the wiki an excellent biography of Justin D’Ath, based on a talk he gave to her class during Book Week.
  • Some children have begun adding book reviews.
  • During their Inquiry unit, two year 6 boys made a web page to make people aware of the plight of the children in the Pakistan floods. A link to this was put on the wiki.
  • As a spin off from these activities, I now have lots of evidence for assessment and report writing.

There is a growing awareness and some curiosity now amongst the staff about Web 2.0 and I have been asked to do some PD and share ideas with the staff next year. As well, I have the opportunity to further develop both my own and the children’s web 2.0 skills next year in my teaching. I think the wiki will develop according to the paths we take and the tools we explore.

My goals for next year are to continue learning about Web 2.0 so that I can provide opportunities to embed the use of appropriate Web 2.0 tools in the learning and teaching of students and staff in our school.

Pam points out that she is by no means an expert (I think she is) and that she is experimenting with the development and use of the wiki. I think she’s done a brilliant job and I am sure the wiki will continue to grow and evolve over time. Please take the opportunity to browse through Pam’s wiki. It is truly amazing what she has accomplished in a couple of terms.

Book Week @ Strathmore SC

The fantastic library team at Strathmore Secondary College developed some great resources for their Book Week activities. They have kindly agreed to share them here.

Poster competition
Poster competition

Strathmore 2

Wendy Moyle explains:

The first prize winning poster formed the centre piece for our wall and table “bridge themed” display. Exciting bridge footage is displayed on the monitor each recess and lunchtime.

Strathmore 3

The CBC award winning books are displayed on the  “Strathmore SC  Silver Story Bridge”



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This time I made  a ToonDoo to print,  and created a poster to promote book Week around the school. . . . and now we can  breath a collective sigh of relief !!

Well done Wendy and the rest of the library staff on creating engaging displays using social and traditional media!

Book Week 2010 @ Whitefriars College

Thanks to Rhondda Powling, Head of Library at Whitefriars College and School Library Association of Victoria President for allowing a parallel post from her blog about the success of their Book Week activities this year.

We tried to do things differently this year. We finally have a large screen for showing digital images, videos, etc. and we bought some digital photo frames. This allowed us to change the emphasis to digital formats.

Book Trailer Competition: Our library technician Dawn created a great competition by gathering together 21 book/film trailers and putting them into a single film using Corel Video Studio. She spent a good deal of time putting in text (and editing the trailers slightly when the titles were a bit too prominent). Our students had to fill out the title of the film, the title of the booked linked to it the author of the book and in what section of the library you would find it (fiction, Non Fiction, picture book, graphic novel. The video file was playing everyday before school and at recess with sound and with the mute button on during class times. Some of the seniors were very taken with the idea and worked on the clips in one of their private study sessions.

Library Treasure Hunt: Another of our staff, Karen Kearney, created a quiz that had the students using their research skills as well as their observation skills. This was a great way for all the year seven students to put into practice the different searching. As part of the personal development classes they were given the chance to take part. They could answer many questions with the appropriate use of the catalogue and information pages linked to the library website. We also had them come up to the library to answer the rest of the questions. The quiz could be done at any time during the week and some of the older boys were very confident they would do well.

Picture puzzles: We created more picture puzzles using the Mosaic maker from Big Huge Labs. Each of the 7 mosaics referred to books at WFC with “bridge”in the title. There was some fun when finding pictures that gave clues to the books. All the clues were designed to link to keywords the notes and/or  subjects linked to the books when you looked up the catalogue. The images were saved onto memory sticks (each with a mosaic number image before it) and then shown using the digital photo frames.
Create myspace graphic with Gickr
Make your own animation

Building a bridge: This activity was held over Wednesday lunchtime. A small but dedicated group of boys undertook to build a bridge using paper, rubber bands, paper clips, straws and string. The bridges had to span 20cms and we tested how much weight they could hold by putting books on them. We had some very interesting attempts at bridges. Some were remarkably strong and held a lot of weight and others just looked interesting.

The Literary Heads competition:

On Friday some of the teaching staff helped us out by being the guinea pigs and wearing the names of various literary characters. They took it all in good spirit and the students loved the incongruity between the staff members and their character label.

The Literary Heads competition: On Friday some of the teaching staff helped us out by being the guinea pigs and wearing the names of various literary characters. They took it all in good spirit and the students loved the incongruity between the staff members and their character label.
avatars myspace with Gickr
Make your own animation

Our students really got into the spirit and a few had favourites, who they tried to help out . It was a lot of fun and the laughs were great to hear. All the students were sorry when the bell rang for period 4.

During lunch times we showed some short television programs. Loosely based around the idea of using media to bridge the gap between our students and literature the viewings included some of the 1960′s Batman episodes (we have quite a few Batman graphic novels and books of the later Batman films). We also had the  first episode of Black Books, the dictionary burning episode of Black Adder, and future screenings will include the original as well as more current Dr Who episodes, some other cartoons and some adaptations of children’s books. Requests have included Round the Twist and Lockie Leonard. Of curse the seniors have asked to see more of Black Adder and the Batman series. We plan to show more book trailers, author sites, and slides of new book covers as well as student work.

As always the boys will have an afternoon tea and be presented with certificates, by the principal, for doing well. They all will be able to choose books as prizes and we will make up book plates to celebrate their achievement. Many more than just the “winners” (those who joined in) will also attend and all will be able to ask their parents to come as well as it is held after school.

What a fabulous week for the students. Well done to all of the staff who worked so hard to make it the success it obviously was.

Feature wiki – Castlemaine Secondary College

Castlemaine Secondary College teacher librarian Judith Hansen and her colleagues have developed a wide ranging wiki to use with students. Judith explains the evolution of the wiki:

We, the Library Team at Castlemaine Secondary College comprise 6 folks over 2 Campuses ( Junior and Senior): Andrea (Teacher Librarian), Junior Campus FT: Russell (Library Technician) Junior Campus 0.9: Kathryn (Teacher Librarian) across campuses 0.3: Elizabeth (Teacher Librarian), Senior Campus 0.4: Debra (Library Technician) Senior Campus 0.9 and myself (Teacher Librarian) Junior Campus 0.2 and Senior Campus 0.6. Andrea, Russell, Debra and I completed the SLAV Web 2 in 2008.

Castlemaine Secondary College Library Team embraced the SLAV Web 2.0 PD in 2008. Web 2.0….the words and number had been scratching around in our team subconscious for some time. Each of us had some knowledge. The online PD enabled us to explore the realm together. We met every Tuesday after school and worked solidly for an hour or so. It was fun! It was Team bonding! It led to further experiences eg. a travel blog by Debra, a wiki by Judith and a demo blog from Andrea, Kathryn, Debra (back) Judith, Russell, Andrea. We have another Team member Elizabeth, who has always had a handle on IT stuff. She came back from leave and works on the Library Intranet which will begin operating across the 2 Castlemaine Secondary College campuses in 2010.

We work very well as a team and whatever emerges from the Library has been a Team effort in that we ensure that we encourage each other in our tasks and endeavours, our focus being the school community and its educational needs and aspirations.



Our wiki came about as our school has a special time for students to explore subjects of interest: teachers offer activities, I offered a Library Club. So a page has been created for this group with full edit rights. Apart from the Word Doc.Plan the page has been created by the students.

The Ultranet Looms: An Ultranet Coach Approaches: Appears!

  • First thought: a blog
  • Second thought: after conferring with Rob the Ultranet coach was that a wiki would best suit the aims of the endeavour.
  • The endeavour: to create: a space where the library, it’s activities and resources could be showcased: provide opportunities eg. editing online, adding images etc. for staff and students to develop confidence in skills via a safe space eg. the wiki’s page save component allows for editing mistakes that can be easily rectified, and to build on the emerging Web 2.0 skills of the Library Team.

Pride, Respect, Responsibility and Post-it-notes.

  • The core values of Castlemaine Secondary College are Pride, Respect, Responsibility. Together they form the value core of the wiki.
  • A disclaimer was also included.
  • Ideas formed as the potential for communication via the wiki became understood.. ideas bubbled up at odd times so the pad of post-it-notes became a handy tool for quick jottings that were then slapped into the log book. The Library team worked on some skills together eg. developing the original competition page where we each had to develop and upload a voki. We needed to develop the confidence to play and to nut out knew skills.

Marketing the site…it takes time and commitment.

  • Email out to all staff with a blurb about the wiki and a the link to the site,(not just once.)This resulted in 1 new page, Nick from Music Industry saw the potential for his subject, developed the Music Industry page which excitingly has a class course component. Hopefully the wiki will develop as a forum for the delivery of the curriculum.
  • Screen shots of the Home Page on display in the Library.
  • Campaign! Verbal face to face communication from Library Team to staff and students. Talk about it at every opportunity.
  • Wiki showcased at every opportunity eg. Library orientation lessons, Community/Teacher Interviews (interviews were held in the Senior Library), when the Library computers were set at the Wiki Home page and visitors waiting for interviews were encouraged to explore the wiki, this also happened when the Senior Library hosted staff morning teas and attended English DLG meetings.
  • Redirection! The Library Request Book was moved from the Front Desk of the Library to the Request Page on the wiki. Individuals and groups were encouraged with help to make requests via the wiki.
  • Have a competition page, which links to the front work desk i.e. the answer box is placed there advertising the competition, so students ask for directions to the wiki and enter the competition and hopefully explore the site a bit more.
  • Share the exciting the number of different countries that have visited the site, student input, such as the Library Club and of course that other educators have expressed interest and encouragement.
  • See our vokis on the Library Competition Page.
Library Club

Library Club

I must say it was wonderful one Friday to have our School Principal show me the white board in her office where brainstorming had been taking place: some of the great things that are happening in our school and to have her point to the Library Wiki!!
Giving things up….all those items you’ve worked so hard to create..but they have to go…the wiki evolves!

  • The Request Page was originally created as a table that was filled in by the requester but it was a bit unwieldy so a much simpler form of logging the request is now in place. It also allows for some play in the editing whilst continuing to communicate the information to the Library Team.
  • A group of Year 12’s were very interested in having a Year 12 page but it didn’t get past the heading and a couple of sites.. not enough time, it closed.
  • I originally created a monthly audio introduction to the wiki on the Home Page. As the wiki evolved and chores increased eg. uploading the monthly new acquisitions the audio introductions were discontinued. However I have had fun using the skill to create audios of poems for eg. a guess the poet competition.

What next?

  • Have students and staff take on more responsibilities eg. Library Club to record Library news, and have eg. English staff utilise the site as a place to submit assessment tasks such as text reviews, a component of the task being to successfully upload the piece of work onto the wiki.
  • To create a Studies of Asia page, with a travel blog and links and space for the school community to share queries and knowledge of our neighbours.

Cherio and feedback
So far we haven’t had any notes left on the pages, so this is an area that we haven’t really explored yet…maybe you would like to leave something for us to play with!
Castlemaine Secondary College Library Team.

Well done to the Castlemaine SC library team!  It’s great to know that students are really getting involved with the development of the wiki and that the Principal has acknowledged your great work on it.

Feature blog – Emmanuel College

Joyce Sendeckyj from Emmanuel College has kindly sent in the following information about the development of a library blog.

 Just to share the Emmanuel College W.I.R.E.D. Blog that  we are launching for our students to coincide with Book Week and the introduction of our inaugural Book Club.

Blog homepage

Blog homepage

The idea for a Book Club and a blog combined nicely the aims of the promotion and enjoyment of reading and literature, the featuring of  book awards and the integration of web interaction and publishing (ie Web 2.0 tools).

Emmanuel College has two secondary campuses, and our goals also include the communication and connection between students and interested staff of both campuses.

The marketing of Book Club and the blog has included, regular articles in the newsletter, links on the school intranet, flyers, promotion and viewing of the blog on Open Day and reminders at meetings and briefings. Book Club is every Tuesday (our first day was 11th of August) and our next step is to assist the students to ‘register’ to the blog.

I have not  completed the SLAV 2.0 course (which I hear good things about) , however I did major in information technology and web publishing at CSU  as part of my librarianship degree. A great deal of my major included Computer Supported Communication and Collaborative Group studies which incorporated Web interactive technologies. I have come to realise how benficial this study was and am loving the ongoing professional development by SLAV and ‘Bright Ideas’.

Happy Book Week.

Thanks to Joyce and her staff for alerting Bright Ideas to the new blog.

Mrs Pancake

The Mrs Pancake website is a site jam packed full of resources for teachers, (particularly Primary teachers).



There are things to make and do, signs, Literacy and Numeracy resources and much more. Handy for Book Week is the Jungle, that could be adapted for whatever you are doing with the Book Safari theme:


Mrs Pancake is updated weekly, so it’s worth visiting often to see what’s new.