For school libraries — much like the newspaper industry — staying relevant in the 21st century has been the story of reinvention. Technology has put information at our fingertips like never before. Ten years ago, New Hampshire school librarian Pam Harland saw the writing on wall and knew that if her profession was to survive, the concept of the school library was going to have to undergo a massive overhaul.
What Do Making and Reading Have in Common? Over at GOOD, there’s a great little piece up about maker spaces in libraries. These ones are bricks and mortar (or metal and glass), unlike the SparkTruck I...
Pam Colburn Harland's insight:
I love this: "What is reading (from among “stacks and stacks of books”) but precisely “a dynamic participatory experience”? The human mind shapes and is shaped by the process of reading. Readers engage with texts in unpredictablyparticipatory ways."
"Fast Company magazine recently featured this article, from design studio Frog’s Fabio Sergio, on how mobile devices will provide learning opportunities for people across age and income spectrums. It offers a nice overview, from a design perspective, on how mobile is opening new opportunities for learning. He details the following:
1. Continuous learning 2. Educational leapfrogging 3. A new crop of older, lifelong learners (and educators) 4. Breaking gender boundaries, reducing physical burdens 5. A new literacy emerges: software literacy 6. Education’s long tail 7. Teachers and pupils trade roles 8. Synergies with mobile banking and mobile health initiatives 9. New opportunities for traditional educational institutions 10. A revolution leading to customized education"
Like Calgary Science School, a learning commons has the doors wide open, and the lid off. To me as a professional, a school library has never meant, “just books”- it has always been a gathering of resources, services and spaces for people, ...
Thanks to a non-stop stream of talk about innovation we just start to tune it out. Let’s not give up on innovation yet. Now is the right time to find innovative ways to open our gates.
Back when Americans actually had a modicum of respect for financial institutions, a certain stock broker was well known for its commercial with the famous tagline, “When E.F. Hutton talks, people listen.” Nowadays, if anyone listens when an investment bank talks, it’s mostly in a state of disbelief as they trot out absurd excuses for losing billions of dollars. That phrase, however, is among the catchiest ever recorded, and many people still find themselves using it to compliment really smart people like Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, as in, “When Jeff Bezos talks, people listen.” Bezos may not have many fans in libraryland these days, but he sure did make an impression on Tom “The World is Flat” Friedman.
As 21st-century librarians, we need to shift our way of thinking about library functions and resources in a fundamental and profound way. We must stop the longstanding and much respected practice of preserving and protecting resources.
The Library Spaces issue: The theme for the March/April 2014Knowledge Quest is Library Spaces. This issue focuses on how school librarians can make the most of all the spaces available to them—both physical and virtual. It features articles on makerspaces, learning commons, joint-use spaces, embedded librarianship, and virtual librarianship.
Pam Colburn Harland's insight:
I was the guest editor of this issue. I loved working with the talented librarians from around the country. Learning commons, maker spaces, augmented reality, and QR codes!
Watch Eli Neiburger’s brilliant presentation - Access, Schmaccess: Libraries in the Age of Information Ubiquity - about information, the interwebs, Reddit Scholar, digital content, memes, ebooks, Metallica, sharing, intellectual propery, nyan cat, DRM, lovely Louis CK…and what it could all mean for libraries.
“In the 20th century libraries brought the world to their communities. In the 21st century libraries bring the information of their communities to the world.”
And now we have the tablet. The iPad has begun a new “education revolution” and now the obligatory opposition tech companies have joined the battle. The question has to be asked – are we again starting from the wrong end of the battle lines? Is the iPad (inserted alternative tablet if so desired) the real catalyst or is there so much more to this than money spending school systems can see beyond the new and shiny?
It’s why I ask the question: Is it the iPad, the App or the User?
Ars TechnicaFuture U: Library 3.0 has more resources, greater challengesArs TechnicaTransition is underway: from a place where you go to get information to a place you go to create; and from a place you go to create to a service you use.
A LOT of ink has been spilled on the supposed death of the printed word. Ebooks are outselling paper books. Newspapers are dying. "Phone books are already dead," said James Reid-Cunningham of the Boston Athenaeum library at a conference called Unbound: Speculations on the Future of the Book, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in May. "The days of the codex as the primary carrier of information are almost over."
This has inspired a lot of hand-wringing from publishers, librarians, archivists - and me, a writer and lifelong bibliophile who grew up surrounded by paper books. I've been blogging since high school, I'm addicted to my smartphone and, in theory, I should be on board with the digital revolution - but when people mourn the loss of paper books, I sympathise.
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