October is International School Library Month!

Ocotber is not far away and now might be a good time to consider celebrating your school library, and school libraries around the world, anytime during October.

The International Association of School Librarianship (IASL), of which SLAV is a partner association, offers a range of activities and ideas to help you celebrate. A great way to welcome in term four.

The 2020 theme for ISLM is “Finding Your Way to Good Health and Well Being”. It is based on one of the UNSDG goals i.e. UN Sustainable Development Goal #3 “Good Health and Well Being”. This year participants are invited to think about and celebrate the link between books, reading, school libraries, good health and well being.

You can access IASL ISLM resources, and get more information HERE.

SLAV Online Book Club – 27th August 2020 – Engaging Covers

Our biggest thanks to those of you able to join us for our recent bookclub meeting. As you can see the list is quite lengthy, which is a wonderful result! Some titles have an indicated suitable age range next to each title, however this is merely a guide and as always we encourage you to use your own judgement, as you know your students best.

Disclaimer: The lists generated as a result of Book Club discussions are not, by any means, an exhaustive list of all titles or authors for each genre/category discussed. Nor will all titles be suitable for all libraries. We advise staff discretion when referencing these lists, to properly confirm individual title suitability for individual libraries, school and students needs. These are suggested titles only, shared by our members and inclusion on, or exclusion from, a list does not suggest SLAV endorsement or rejection of a title.

Happy reading and don’t forget to join us for our next meeting on October 14 2020 to dicuss biographies. Register HERE.

Covers that do well to engage readers:

George Ivanoff – new reprinted new covers of his series are excellent

The Bad Guys by Aaron Blabey

Real Pigeons Fight Crime Series by Andrew McDonald and Ben Wood

Polly and Buster Trilogy by Sally Rippin

Justin D’Ath – Extreme Adventures Series

Heartstopper Graphic Novels by Alice Oseman

Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

Lost Soul Atlas by Zana Fraillon

Film tie-in covers work well in YA

Five Nights at Freddy’s book series based on the video game

It Sounded Better in My Head by Nina Kenwood

The Stranger Things Books by Various

The End of the World is Bigger Than Love by Davina Bell

Design styles that don’t work as well to engage:

‘Babyish covers’ in a secondary school and other covers that suggest a young audience or young characters

Kids hate old fashioned covers

Cartoonish or illustrated covers in middle grade

Stereo typed colours – pink being for girls

Currently Reading:

Pax by Sara Pennypacker

The Strangeworlds Travel Agency by L.D. Lapinski.

Emergency Rescue Angel by Cate Whittle

Fox Eight by George Saunders

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

Metal Fish, Falling Snow by Cath Moore

Ghost Bird by Lisa Fuller

Plain Janes Graphic Novels

Lumber Janes Graphic Novels

Don’t Stop Thinking About Tomorrow – Siobhan Curham (Yr 9)

Taylor Before and After – Jennie Englund (Yr 8)

The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams

Snow by Gina Inverarity

Yellow by Megan Jacobsen

The Scythe Trilogy by Neal Shusterman

Monuments and Rebel Gods by Will Kostakis

Vanishing Deep by Astrid Scholte

Blood Moon by Lucy Cuthew

The Mothers by Brit Bennett

The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett

Kwame Alexander Titles

Sarah Crossan Titles

The Dog Runner by Bren MacDibble

Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

A Silent Voice by Yoshitoki Oima

The Anchoress by Robyn Cadwallader

A Gentleman in Moscow by Amor Towles

SLAV Virtual Book Club List June 18th, 2020

We were delighted to welcome so many of you to our second SLAV Virtual Book Club for 2020. Thank you for joining us and for your participation.

As promised we are sharing the list of titles discussed below. Members were invited to share their favourite Australian titles, whether they are new releases or perhaps, overlooked gems. We have so many wonderful Australian writers for young people of all ages, it was very difficult to cover them all with only an hour to discuss!

We have linked each title through to the Readings Website. Please keep in mind that if an item is out of stock, it may take some time to become available again, particularly if it is coming from overseas.

Disclaimer: The lists generated as a result of Book Club discussions are not, by any means, an exhaustive list of all titles or authors for each genre/category discussed. Nor will all titles be suitable for all libraries. We advise staff discretion when referencing these lists, to properly confirm individual title suitability for individual libraries, school and students needs. These are suggested titles only, shared by our members and inclusion on, or exclusion from, a list does not suggest SLAV endorsement or rejection of a title.

Australian Middle Fiction Discussed

Pie in the Sky by Remy Lai
E-boy by Anh Do
Sophia and the Corner Park Clubhouse by Davina Bell
Game On Series by George Ivanoff
Angel Creek by Sally Rippin
Threads of Magic by Alison Croggon
Nice Girls Don’t Play Footy by Kathy Helidoniotis

Australian YA or Adult Fiction Discussed 

How to Grow a Family Tree by Eliza Henry Jones
Lady Helen and the Dark Days Club Series – Alison Goodman

Take Three Girls by Cath Crowley, Simone Howell and Fiona Wood
The Diamond Hunter by Fiona Mc Intosh
The Yield by Tara June Winch
The Ghost and the Bounty Hunter by Adam Courtenay
Exploded View by Carrie Tiffany
Mateship with Birds by Carrie Tiffany
The Medoran Chronicles by Lynette Noni
Everywhere, Everything, Everyone by Katie Warner
The Unlisted Series (ABC TV tie-in) by Chris Kunz and Justine Flynn
The Aurora Cycle by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
The End of the World is Bigger Than Love by Davina Bell
Ghost Bird by Lisa Fuller
Deep Water by Sarah Epstein
Ashala Wolf Series by Ambelin Kwaymullina
My Place (abridged Young Readers Edition) by Sally Morgan
The White Girl by Tony Birch

More Middle Grade and YA Australian Authors (to name only a few…)

Will Kostakis

Leanne Hall

Jane Godwin

Adrian Beck 

Felice Arena 

Nicole Hayes

Robert Newton

Tim Pegler

Melina Marchetta

Emily Bitto

Ceridwen Dovey 

Sonya Hartnett 

Resources for selecting Australian Fiction

The Readings Children’s Book Prize

The Readings Young Adult Book Prize

The Readings Prize for New Australian Fiction

The CBCA 

Inside A Dog 

 

 

 

 

SLAV Virtual Book Club List May 21st, 2020

We were delighted to welcome so many of you to our very first SLAV Virtual Book Club! Thank you for joining us and for your participation.

As promised we are sharing the list of titles discussed below. This first list is quite eclectic, owing to the fact that there was no theme for this particular session, we simply invited you all to share what you had been reading over the past few months.

Moving forward, these meetings will be themed, resulting in lists that we hope will be useful for your classrooms and libraries. We also hope to align titles to curriculum areas, where possible, and specify if they are suitable for primary or secondary students.

We have linked each title through to the Readings Website. Please keep in mind that if an item is out of stock, it may take some time to become available again if it is coming from overseas.

For now though, we present the first list and hope you enjoy!

May 21 SLAV Book Club Suggestions

Suitable for Older Secondary Students

Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell
The Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams
Station Eleven by Emily St John Mandel
A Single Thread by Tracey Chevalier

Ruin, Scholar and Good Turn – all by Dervla Mc Tiernan
The Erratics by Vicki Laveau Harvie
The Testaments by Margaret Attwood
The Sin Eater by Megan Campisi
The Binding by Bridget Collins
Bruny by Heather Rose
Deep Water by Sarah Epstein
Catching Teller Crow by Ambelin Kwaymullina & Ezekiel Kwaymullina
The Glass Castle by Jeanette Walls
The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern
Olive Kitteridge and Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout
Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine by Gail Honeyman
The End of the World is Bigger Than Love By Davina Bell
Promise Me Happy by Robert Newton
The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins
Small Spaces by Sarah Epstein
Please Don’t Hug Me by Kay Kerr

Non Fiction
Bewildered by Laura Waters
Made in Scotland by Billy Connelly
Wordslut: A Feminist Guide to taking back the English language by Amanda Montell
The Convent by Stuart Kells
Educated by Tara Westover

Suitable for Upper Primary and Beyond
The Year the Maps Changed by Danielle Binks
My Family and Other Animals by Gerald Durrell

Beyond Belief by Dee White
The Art of Taxidermy by Sharon Kernot

Share Your COVID-19 School Library Experience

From the team at Students Need School Libraries

COVID-19. It changed Term 1, 2020. It changed the way students and school staff approach Term 2, 2020. It changed the way we view education. It changed the world. What it didn’t change was the need for school libraries run by a qualified and passionate school library team.

We want to know and share what school libraries or school library teams have been focusing on during this COVID crisis. It might look a little different from the usual, but it’s even more important during this time of change and upheaval.

The Task: We want to know what you, as a library staff member or library team, have been focusing on during this COVID crisis.

The Goal: To continue sharing the word about the importance of school libraries and school library staff. Schools are blessed to have you. And the schools without you are probably wishing they did have you right about now.

What you would need to do: Take 5 minutes to respond to the questions below or write a short paragraph about how your school library is responding to the COVID crisis and email it to blog@studentsneedschoollibraries.org.au Anyone involved in school libraries in any way is welcome to respond, from school library staff to parents or students, authors running virtual visits or publishers providing access to resources.

We will feature responses on the Students Need School Libraries Website and social media pages and we hope to share the stories around the world in collaboration with our international colleagues. We hope we can rally around each together during this time to support each other, our students, school staff and the wider community. Please let us know if you have any other ideas you would like to share.

Snapshot of a School Library during COVID-19.

  1. What has been the focus for your school library/ role during the COVID-19 crisis?
  2. What major tasks have you achieved?
  3. What has been the result for staff and/or students?
  4. What other information would you like readers to know?
  • Do you give permission for this information to be shared beyond the Students Need School Libraries website and social media, for example in an articles for a school library journal? Yes/No/I’d need to be contacted first
  • Would you like this posted anonymously: Yes/No. If no, please answer the questions below.
    • Your role/s:
    • Your school:

You can find more information here. https://studentsneedschoollibraries.org.au/blog/share-your-covid-19-school-library-experience/

Online resources

During this time, there are many lists being shared that can help you find quality resources to support online learning in your school.  We look for institutions that we know produce reliable and authentic information, and are collating a page of links to resources, guides and useful information HERE for ease of access. We will continue to update this page as we find new resources to share.

 

Citizen Science – involving students in real world activities

Involving students in active projects during the closing weeks of the school year is not only a productive use of the closing weeks, it’s also an opportunity to introduce students to Citizen Science and kindle a fire of enthusiasm they can follow up further over the summer holidays.  Citizen science  enables members of the public to participate in scientific research in collaboration with scientists and scientific organisations.  It’s open to individuals or groups and is easily accessible online.

In August, Kristin Fontichiaro of Michigan University, USA, introduced the concept to SLAV conference delegates in the course of exploring data literacy and the ways in which data permeates every aspect of our lives.  A partner in the 2 year project, Creating Data Literate Students,  Kristin introduced real world projects that could be brought into the classroom.

Potential Citizen Science projects (scientific and historical) are:

The Zooniverse is the world’s largest and most popular platform for people-powered research.  Involving hundreds of thousands of volunteer researchers worldwide, topics range from environmental projects, wildlife observation, climate, history and biology, just to name a few.

Weddell Seal Count (on Zooniverse) involves counting the number of Weddell seals in the Ross Sea area of Antarctica to establish if they are being threatened by fishing practices in the region.

SeaBirdWatch (on Zooniverse) aims to address the worldwide decline of seabirds.  Action is dependent on the gathering of huge about of data relating to birds, their location, flying patterns etc.  Identify and count birds from your computer at home.

BushBlitz Australia’s largest nature discovery project – a unique multi-million dollar partnership between the Australian Government through Parks Australia and the Australian Biological Resources StudyBHP Billiton Sustainable Communities and Earthwatch Australia to document plants and animals across Australia.  It’s in our backyard!

Measuring the ANZACs (on Zooniverse) is a New Zealand project transcribing the personnel files of individuals who served in World War I and the South African Wars.

Operation War Diary is another wartime historical project, this time of the British Army on the Western Front during World War I and involving analysis of 1.5 million pages of unit war diaries.

Atlas of Living Australia is a collaborative, national project that aggregates biodiversity data from multiple sources and makes it freely available and usable online.  Students can both contribute and  use data on the site to learn about the distribution of Australian flora and fauna.

Citizen science is becoming so popular and participation so easy, new projects are launching regularly.  For example the news article ‘Urgent rescue mission’ to save Australia’s frogs using smartphone app.  That app is FrogID, the tool being distributed to the public by the the Australian Museum to collect frog calls from across Australia.

As you consider embarking on a Citizen Science project for the classroom, some tips for consideration from Kristin and her colleagues.

  • How much training of volunteers is offered?
  • Has this project worked with high school students before?
  • Are there videos, online tutorials, and other teaching resources available?
  • What is the role of the lead scientists? Do they have an outreach or instructional team member who is available for questions or assistance?
  • Can you discern political or social perspectives, and are you comfortable discussing these?
  • Is there an obvious educational goal, or are objectives primarily related to “doing science” or service learning work?
  • How social is the team with its citizen scientists? Do they use Twitter, email newsletters, tagging within online platforms etc to communicate?
  • Are their communications and platforms compatible with your school’s policies?
    (Smith, Abilock, and Williams (in press))
As authentic assessment, rather than it being a simple observe and count exercise, Kristin and her team recommend:
  • Process journals/blogs
  • Reflective work
  • Oral presentation

This post has barely touched on the possibilities for involvement in Citizen Science, readers are welcome to share their experiences via Comments.  SLAV members check Kristin’s presentation on the SLAV member portal.

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Header adapted from image http://www.greeniacs.com/GreeniacsArticles/Education/Citizen-Science.html