Tuesday, 26 April 2011

The School Library Collection and the Digital Environment

The introduction to this week's module speaks of a “tide of events”, which is changing how school libraries function. This is due to the ongoing digital revolution, changing educational practices, and the preferences and information seeking behaviours of students and teachers.
The school library collection is crucial to teaching and learning. Teacher-librarians are challenged to provide a physical and a digital collection that will meet the curriculum needs of students and staff. Will technology ever replace picture books?
John Kennedy (2006), in the set text for this subject, entitled Collection Management: A concise introduction (rev. ed.), he establishes that “collection management is a set of interrelated activities focusing on the selection, acquisition, evaluation, preservation and deselection (or weeding) of library materials” (p 1).
Kennedy indicates that there are similarities between the definitions of collection management and collection development. Collection development occurs when the growth of resources is the main focus of the acquisition activities, such as when a new unit of studies is introduced into the curriculum. Collection management refers to the maintenance of the collection, by evaluating the use of resources and making deselection decisions.
Glossary definitions:
Selection is the branch of collection management concerned with deciding which items will be added to a library collection.
Acquisition is the activity of obtaining what has been selected for inclusion in the collection.
Deselection is the removal from a collection of materials judged no longer to merit a place there.
Evaluation is the process of determining the worth of a collection in terms of its ability to satisfy the wants and needs of clients and fulfill the goals of the library.
Collection development policy is a publicly available document which sets out the library’s collecting philosophy and goals, describes in some detail the type of materials it holds and collects, and outlines policy on other matters relating to the collection.
ASLA/ALIA (2001) has published a collection development policy definition in Learning for the Future. The policy is described as, “An information services centre policy outlining principles and guidelines for the selection of curriculum materials, allocation of the resources budget, and ongoing management of collections” (p 75). The definition is more specific than Kennedy’s. It is comprehensively elaborated on in the following two publications.
Learning for the Future provides a chapter entitled Resourcing the Curriculum which offers many references to the teacher-librarian’s role in collection development/collection management.
SLAV (1996) also refers to the role of the teacher-librarian in the context of resourcing the curriculum throughout its guide Skilling Up. In addition to the collection development and management role of the teacher-librarian, each chapter includes professional duties and operational tasks that pertain to the development and management of the school library collection.
Doug Johnson (2010) argues that online reading is changing the reading habits of society. Last year I read the article in the SCIS Connections journal, when it was published in March. In a discussion with my sister-in-law, a fellow teacher, I stated in an email to her that I “was a little startled by some of the revelations of the current reading habits and predictions of the future ‘post literate’ society.” Having recently read the article again, and with a year of hindsight (and a Kindle on my bedside table), I believe that people will not lose their interest in reading. Rather, they will read using various forms of technology and mobile reading devices. Johnson is being overly dramatic in his reaction to alternatives to print resources that are available. The convenience that is offered by electronic will not kill literacy. Johnson’s article can be found at: http://www2.curriculum.edu.au/verve/_resources/connections_72.pdf.
Mal Lee (2010) in the journal, SCIS Connections, presents a persuasive vision of schools “morphing into information services” (p 5). I was reminded of an excellent conference that was hosted by SLAV on 22 March, 2010, entitled “Let’s Make the Whole School a Library”. This conference focussed on the same prediction as Lee, who states that “where the use of digital is normal in every classroom, each classroom becomes a digital teaching hub and thus a ‘state of the art library’ (p 5). The teacher-librarian would be known as the Director of Information Services, who would oversee the total use of all manner of digital and information technologies. Lee’s article can be found at: http://www2.curriculum.edu.au/scis/connections/a_library_without_books_1_2.html
Sandra Hughes-Hassell and Jaqueline Mancall’s e-book offers a good review of how teaching and learning styles have changed from the empty vessel notion to that of inquiry learning, where students express what they already know about a topic, then conduct their own independent research to discover the answers.
The article by Bishop deals with the assessing the community before making collection development decisions. By researching the local area via the historical society and the public library, useful details will emerge regarding the historical background of the suburb and the school’s development.
Kilbreda College was established in Mentone, a bayside suburb of Melbourne. The handsome Italianate building was built in the boom era of the 1880s. It originally operated as a coffee palace, providing a tee-totalling alternative to nearby hotels.  With a historical society and a council building positioned in the same street, Kilbreda College’s history is easy to research. A book entitled A View From the Tower was written to commemorate the college’s centenary and another, Mentone Through the Ages, includes many facts and anecdotes about the school. Kilbreda’s archive is also very well resourced, and it is currently being displayed in a newly built area of the main office. Bishop’s article can be found at: http://www.csu.edu.au/division/library/ereserve/pdf/bishop-k.pdf.

Monday, 25 April 2011

Information Literacy

In the 1980s the term “library skills” was replaced by “information skills”, or “study skills”. These skills included a wide range of skills that were required to complete curriculum related assignments. Late in the 1990s, when I completed post-graduate studies in Teacher-Librarianship, the term “information literacy skills” began to be used, to incorporate the thinking skills that are required to think how and when to use information literacy skills.
Linda Langford (1998) questions whether information literacy is a concept (an idea) or a process (a series of actions). She ponders whether information literacy is “a new literacy, one that is transformed from existing literacies to complement the existing technologies for which the Information Age students must be skilled” (p 2). Langford’s article can be found at: http://www.fno.org/sept98/clarify.html.
Of the fourteen definitions that are recorded in my notes, I favour Doyle (1996), who defines information literacy as the “ability to access, evaluate, and use information from a variety of resources, to recognise when information is needed, and to know how to learn” (p 9). I agree with Langford when she concludes that “lifelong learning is more than a lofty ideal; it is the outcome of an information-literate society” (p 14).
Abilock (2007) lists the attributes and characteristics of information literacy, including Student Skills and Strategies, Student Outcomes, and the Curriculum and Teaching Design. Abilock’s article can be found at: http://www.noodletools.com/debbie/literacies/information/1over/infolit1.html.
James Herring and Anne-Marie Tarter (2007) report on the PLUS model (Purpose/Planning, Use, Location and Self-evaluation) which was used in a research study to guage the feedback from students in regard to how they use information skills. The students recorded that their confidence increased due to the brainstorming process at the beginning of the research process. The findings of this research are impressive and persuasive and eight recommendations are offered for teacher-librarians and teachers. Like Lyn Hay’s research, which was recorded in The Role of the Teacher-Librarian section of this blog, the study by Herring and Tarter would be useful to share with the principal. The Herring and Tarter article is not available online, but a hardcopy is filed in my subject folder.
From my reading of Langford (1998), Abilock (2004), and Herring (2007), three significant information literacy keywords are:
1. critical thinking process;
2. problem solving behaviours;
3. independent lifelong learning.

Further thoughts and reflections...

My favourite models of Information Literacy are:
The Big 6,
Making a Difference Research Guide,
Researching Together
The State Library of Victoria’s Ergo website can be found at: http://slv.vic.gov.au/ergo. Ergo’s research guide is similar to The Big 6 model.

All of the information literacy models are very impressive, enabling students to break down the research task into manageable parts. This practice instils confidence when facing the final product of the assignment. Herring's PLUS model has fewer steps.
Students benefit by developing the skills that Doyle depicts as knowing “how to learn" (1994, p. 40). They can find out what they need to know, when they need it. This enables independent lifelong learning to occur.
Two obstacles for teacher librarians in developing Information Literacy:
1. It is difficult to teach Information Literacy lessons as a series, rather than just at the beginning of the research task. To overcome this, I will ask to visit the remaining research lessons.
2. It is difficult to persuade teachers to plan their research lesson with me, so that I can inform them of the print and digital resources that are available. When I look ahead and see research lessons booked into the library, I will approach teachers with my suggestions.
James Herring’s (2006) article directed me to a review of a book that has been edited by two of my professional role models, Dr. Susan La Marca and Mary Manning. Dr. La Marca is currently Head of Library Services at Genezzano College, Kew. Mary Manning has recently retired after sixteen years as Executive Officer of the School Library Association of Victoria, of which I Co-convene the Southern Metropolitan Branch.  Herring has provided an informative review of a book that has been edited by these inspiring leaders in teacher-librarianship. The book was published in 2004 and is entitled Reality Bytes: information literacy for independent learning. Herring suggests that all schools should possess a copy.
Herring reports on a study that was carried out in Ripon Grammar School, in Yorkshire, using year 8 students as they embarked on a physics project. His PLUS model was used by the students and was found to improve student outcomes by providing a metacognitive approach to their own learning, by helping students to reflect on their thinking during the research process.
Herring’s article can be found at: http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/aasl/aaslpubsandjournals/slmrb/slmrcontents/volume9/informationliteracy.cfm
Wolf’s article can be found at: http://www.ala.org/ala/mgrps/divs/aasl/aaslpubsandjournals/slmrb/slmrcontents/volume62003/bigsixinformation.cfm

The Teacher-Librarian and the Curriculum

I enjoyed Judy O’Connell’s podcast and her declaration that teacher-librarians are “Lifesavers of Learning”. Judy spoke of the passion and purpose that underpins all that we do for students and teachers. Judy referred to the breadth of the exposure we give students in their information lessons by teaching them how to read words, images, sounds, video games and more.
Judy described the constructivist theory as one that is not passive, but active. Inquiry learning is the heart of our work, and a teaching method that I am familiar with. It is supported by ICT, which adds depth to the thinking process. She believes that Google and its relations as giving students a false “sense of security”. Teacher-librarians are the key stakeholders in this digital revolution, and as such, we need to “create a robust 21st century learning environment”.
Judy referred to the article by Suzie Boss and Jane Krauss (2007), which is included in the essential readings for this week’s topic. The authors portray inquiry learning as a process of collaboration, communication and critical thinking. The skills that students use in their problem-solving collaborations prepare them for the activities that they will perform in future careers.
The definition of inquiry-based learning offered at the EduTech Wiki (2010) advocates that the constructivist theory of learning is a fulfilling and satisfying process for students to undertake in the process of independently solving a research task. The Cyclic Inquiry model offers the following five steps: Ask, Investigate, Create, Discuss and Reflect. The article can be found at: http://edutechwiki.unige.ch/en/Inquiry-based_learning.
Suzie Boss and Jane Krauss (2007) use the example of a teacher, Adam Kinory who is a convert to project-based learning. He speaks of the evils of teachers being the “content expert” (p 4), compared to the rejuvenation that teachers experience when they provide students with the opportunity to use digital tools and engage in problem-solving and use higher-order thinking skills. According to Scott Durham, “In project-based learning, students investigate open-ended questions and apply their knowledge to produce authentic products” (p 12). Boss and Krauss list the four hallmarks of this reinvigorated approach to projects.
For educators who are reluctant to adopt a different teaching style, Boss and Krauss remind their readers that as lifelong learners, we should be prepared to try the shift to a learning style that will enable students to find their own answers, when needed. Students use creativity, information fluency, critical thinking and digital citizenship, along with five extra learnings that describe the additional benefits to students.
The authors claim that with practice, students improve in their ability to work as a team. Their capacity to manage deadlines, resolve conflicts and investigate their own questions also improves. Teachers benefit by adapting to working with students as they work through their projects. The article can be found at: http://www.iste.org/images/excerpts/REINVT-excerpt.pdf.
Using Wikipedia, I found a clear and concise definition of inquiry learning and project-based learning. Ebsco and Informit searches of inquiry learning and project-based learning gave me good results. Google scholar gave me massive results. I’ll stick with Ebsco and Informit, using their helpful search tools.

The Role of the Teacher Librarian

ALIA and ASLA (2009) provide a strong rationale for the provision of a qualified teacher librarian to lead and manage the school library. In their Statement on teacher librarian qualifications, they offer a description of seven areas that teacher librarians deal with in their practice. These organisations acknowledge the changing nature of the profession, and stress the importance of ongoing professional learning. The statement can be found at:  http://www.asla.org.au/policy/teacher.librarian.qualifications.htm.
The ALIA and ASLA (2004) Standards of professional excellence for teacher librarians are divided into three sections: Professional Knowledge, Professional Practice and Professional Commitment. These standards are worth visiting regularly, in order to be reminded of my professional goals. The standards can be found at: http://www.asla.org.au/policy/standards.htm.
The SLASA (2003) Teacher Librarian Role Statement includes Teaching and Learning, Leadership, Curriculum Involvement, Management, Literature Promotion and Services, with a detailed list or duties for each title. It claims that teacher librarians operate at “leadership level” when all roles are being fulfilled. The role statement can be found at:  http://www.slasa.asn.au/Advocacy/rolestatement.html.
The IASL (2003) Policy Statement on School Libraries embellishes on the previous organisations’ role statements. It reminds teacher librarians to cater for the heritage of the students, as well as facilitating an understanding of other cultures. It states the importance of providing access for disabled students and it suggests extending the library’s hours of operation. The policy statement addresses the potential to provide lifelong education, research skills (ICT) and literacy development. Kilbreda College’s Library provides all these services to its students. This policy statement can be found at: http://www.iasl-online.org/about/handbook/policysl.html.
The policy statement suggests creating connections with local public libraries. The Kilbreda College Library website includes links to six public library catalogues. Links to the State Library of Victoria’s Ergo and Inside a Dog websites were included on the school library’s website three years ago. VCE students are invited to join the State Library of Victoria, in order to access the broad range of digital databases that are provided. A public librarian from Bayside Library, who is a former teacher-librarian, has agreed to attend the meetings of the School Library Association of Victoria branch that I convene.
The IFLA/UNESCO (2006) School Library Manifesto focuses on lifelong learning skills and the potential to develop the students’ imaginations. Its mission is to provide the resources that “enable all members of the school community to become critical thinkers and effective users of information in all formats and media” (p. 1). The manifest can be found at: http://archive.ifla.org/VII/s11/pubs/manifest.htm. I have printed the accompanying Guidelines, but have yet to read them! They are available at: http://archive.ifla.org/VII/s11/pubs/sguide02.pdf.
Melissa Purcell (2010) lists the following five roles of the teacher-librarian: Leader, Instructional Partner, Information Specialist, Teacher, and Program Administrator. She deals with time management by suggesting that teacher-librarians keep a time study chart, by recording what tasks have been completed during that time. Each task can be allocated a code, connecting it to her list of the five roles. I plan to take up this idea. Purcells’ article can be searched at: http://web.ebscohost.com/.
Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson (2008) describe the school library media specialist as an instructional leader, whose activities are woven through the curriculum. Whilst technology and collaboration are emphasized in their article, no attention is given to the leadership and administration roles that were included in Purcell’s role description. The article can be searched at: http://web.ebscohost.com/.
James Herring’s ETL401 podcast encourages me to concentrate on prioritising my roles, according to my strengths. His chapter highlights the teaching and learning roles that were featured in Purcell’s article, and the article by Lamb and Johnson. He also stresses the importance of assisting students to develop their research skills, using Bloom’s higher order thinking skills as a goal for teacher-librarians to aspire to in their teaching. The article is not available online, but a hardcopy is filed in my subject folder.
Ken Haycock’s article (2007) repeats the fact that teacher-librarians have an effect on student achievement and collaboration improves student learning. It can be searched at: http://web.ebscohost.com/.
Dianne Oberg (2006) offers strategies for attracting the attention of principals and other school administrators, in order to earn their respect and support. She believes that teacher-librarians achieve this by
1.      Building their professional credibility as experts in the field;
2.      Communicating effectively with principals as agents or catalysts of change;
3.      By working to advance school goals, as an ally of the principal.
Teacher-librarians have dual degrees in education and school librarianship and school leaders are expected to have master’s degrees. Oberg states that, “By contributing as school leaders to school wide initiatives and concerns, teacher-librarians build their credibility as educators and increase the willingness of others to work with them”. (p 16). Oberg points out that principals believe that in-servicing staff is the most important aspect of the teacher-librarian’s role. Teacher-librarians believe that collaborating and collection development are more important roles.
Oberg encourages teacher-librarians to utilise professional networks. I have gained from my membership in the ALIA and SLAV organisations. Attending their professional development conferences and convening a branch of SLAV has enabled me to grow professionally. Sharing this knowledge by writing journal articles for SLAV’s journal FYI has challenged me to communicate beyond my branch. “Principals and teacher-librarians have a lot in common and a great deal to gain by working together” (p 17). Her article can be searched at: http://proquest.umi.com.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/.  
James Herring’s suggestion on his podcast, I have made two attempts to join OZTL_NET, with no luck. I joined when I was studying a Graduate Diploma in Information Management in 1999. I will try again because of the richness that interacting with other teacher-librarians can offer my roles. I am interested in accessing the Big 6 blog, ALIA News, ALIA on Facebook, Librarians & Facebook, and Joyce Valenza’s wiki, after being inspired by her at a SLAV conference in 2010.
Annette Lamb and Larry Johnson (2004 – 2007) have provided access to three articles that define certain roles of the teacher-librarian. They each offer practical advice and strategies for gathering appropriate evidence that teacher-librarians make a difference in terms of performance indicators, based on their specialist skills.
Evidence Based Practice (EBP) in the Library Media Program can be found at: http://eduscapes.com/sms/program/evidence.html.
Evaluation of the Library Media Program can be found at: http://eduscapes.com/sms/program/evaluation.html.
Library Media Program Accountability can be found at: http://eduscapes.com/sms/program/accountability.html.
Ross Todd (2003), in his article Irrefutable Evidence: How to prove you boost student achievement, suggests asking students at the end of their research lessons to state three things they had learned, how the lesson had improved the way they conducted research, and how he could further help them. Their answers gave him clear insights into the impacts of his lessons. He offers four steps to get started on the process. These strategies help to gain the support of the administrators, principals, teachers and parents.
In his article, Evidence-based practice and school libraries, Ross Todd (2007) gives a powerful argument that “evidence-based practice moves beyond intelligent guesswork and clever hunches to establishing a sound basis for making claims about the impact of that practice. In doing so, it moves from a persuasive framework to a declarative framework in building active support for school libraries” (p 63).
Todd offers many lists and strategies for collecting and measuring the evidence. On page 74, he gives a ready-made questionnaire of eight statements that students can give Yes/No responses to. I would like to use his suggestion to guage students’ opinions of the assistance they received from a teacher-librarian: “Now, remember one time when the school library really helped you. Write about the help that you got, and what you were able to do because of it” (p 75). Todd’s article can be found at: http://www.csu.edu.au/division/library/ereserve/pdf/todd-r.pdf.
Dianne Oberg (2002) states that well funded libraries tend to achieve higher average test scores, whether the schools were rich or poor. The size of the library staff and its collection also determined student achievement. The extent of instruction given by teacher-librarians also has a direct correlation to student success. Her article can be searched at: http://proquest.umi.com/.
Lyn Hay (2006) shifts the focus of our attention to “what Aussie kids want” (p 19). She highlights the demands that are placed on students to be efficient users of information and ICT at school and at home. Hay surveyed students in Queensland and Victoria, using open ended questions that asked students to recount a recent experience of help. This is a similar strategy to Ross Todd’s research in 2007. The details that the students referred to are very practical, making Hay’s research very useful in discussions with the principal! Her findings emphasise that students feel more confident as researchers when they receive the help they need from teacher-librarians. Hay’s article can be found at: http://search.informit.com.au.ezproxy.csu.edu.au/fullText;dn=151835;res=AEIPT
This has been a hefty topic to cover thoroughly, but the evidence that teacher-librarians do make a difference to student achievement is very strong. I feel empowered to approach my principal with convincing research, if necessary. She has been supportive of the value of the teaching and learning that is achieved by Kilbreda’s Library, by the 1.4 teacher-librarians. Having a sister who is a teacher-librarian enables her to be aware of the information fluency experiences that are facilitated by school libraries.

Sunday, 24 April 2011

Management Implications

James Herring’s podcast persuaded me that it’s okay to say “No” to staff who bob up and demand my time. My habit has been to drop what I’m doing, so I’ll try to put my needs first.
The article by Gilman gave me tips on being more effective. He suggests using openness, responsiveness, collaboration and communication with library colleagues to ascertain what improvements are needed. It can be accessed at: http://chronicle.com/article/The-Four-Habits-of-Highly-E/46544/.
I learned many good tips from the Effective Time Management for Teachers article at: http://www.time-management-success.com/time-management-for-teachers.html. Whilst I was fully aware of Zone 1 (Structured Time) and Zone 3 (Personal Life), I’ve always struggled with Zone 2 (all work related tasks).
I always arrive at school with a list of chores. These are typically dealt with at the end of the day, after each day’s meetings are over. Consequently, I stay until 6pm. In future, I’ll concentrate on the gaps of time when I’m not teaching and when people don’t need me and try to complete my list then. Putting a task off to work on at home often means it usually doesn’t get done, so in future I’ll make the time to just do it. This will enable more time for CSU study at home! The article offers many links that offer suggestions as to how to manage interruptions and procrastinations.
Sanders’ Conflict Resolution article demonstrated that reaching a compromise is not always a wise idea. I recorded three ideas that are new to me, which I’ve posted on the ETL401 Topic 6 Forum. It is available at: http://www.csu.edu.au/division/library/ereserve/pdf/sanders4.pdf.
I found many inspiring ideas on Karen Bonanno’s website. Some excellent tips are contained in Promoting Your School Library, at: http://www.schoollibrarymanagement.com/promoting_your_school_library.html.
Web 2.0 applications and library & information services, at:
http://www.schoollibrarymanagement.com/web2_applications_school_library.html offers the opportunity to ask what Web 2.0 applications are we using, and why we use them.
Working cooperatively within a fixed timetable was written by guest author, Dr Jenny Bales. It is available at: http://www.schoollibrarymanagement.com/cooperative_planning_teaching.html. Her case study offers convincing strategies that highlight the benefits of planning and teaching with colleagues.

Pappas describes the many benefits of creating a virtual (paperless) version of her library’s manual. She includes many useful ideas for the creation of policy, personnel information, collection development and acquisitions. It can be found at: http://www.schoollibrarymonthly.com/columns/management/index.html.

Spence cuts to the core of the role of the teacher-librarian. His team statement gave me food for thought. It would be a useful tool to present if staff cuts were ever considered. It is available at: http://www.teachers.ash.org.au/rblonline/librarymanagement/libmanage.htm.  

Using the CSU Library Databases

I have been promoting the use of the Ebsco database at Kilbreda College during research lessons for a number of years, but I’m embarrassed to admit that I wasn’t aware of the folders. The Watch-it! Tutorials for Ebsco and Informit were very helpful and I had great success with completing the three activities in the module. The details of my searches are posted on the ETL 401 Topic 1 Forum.


Since July 2001 I have been a teacher-librarian at Kilbreda College, having graduated in 2000 with a Graduate Diploma in Information Management from Monash University. Kilbreda is situated in Mentone, which is a bayside suburb of Melbourne. The college has just over 1,000 students, from Years 7 to 12. Since 2006, I have been the Library Coordinator. In 2007 the library was extended and renovated, giving it an energising red and grey decor.
In 2010, I became the Co-Convenor of the Southern Metropolitan Branch of the School Library Association of Victoria (SLAV). This three-year position enables me to provide professional development for members, who meet once each school term. Attending a SLAV Council Meeting each term allows me to engage with the convenors of the other twenty-one Vicorian branches, as well as learning about the functions of SLAV.

In 2010 I completed a twelve-week Web 2.0 Personal Learning Network (PLN) course that was run by SLAV. I enjoyed blogging my opinions and new learnings. This course ignited my desire to continue stay abreast with all that is new, and all that is still to occur in the world of school librarianship. I agree with Joyce Valenza and Doug Johnson that it is “the best time in history to be a librarian. We have rich opportunities to teach and guide in new information and communication landscapes”. This quote comes from the article entitled, Things That Keep Us Up at Night. It can be found online at: http://www.schoollibraryjournal.com/article/CA6699357.html.

My professional passions are the teaching of Information Literacy Skills and the promotion of literature for relaxation. Having been a primary teacher, with a particular interest in infant education, I believe that aural, spoken and written literacy develops in good readers.

I have named by blog I Love Ergo because the Ergo website is my favourite for its research skills, study skills and essay writing skills. Its motto is: Research Resources Results. It provides access to hundreds of primary and secondary historical sources. It was developed by the State Library of Victoria in 2006 and has recently been re-launched with many new features. It can be found at: http://slv.vic.gov.au/ergo/ 

Ergo allows schools to embed their website on school websites, to enable students to access its resources easily and conveniently. In 2007, when the Kilbreda Library website was created, the Ergo website was added to the Research and Resources sections. These links can be found at: http://kilbreda.vic.edu.au/library/index.html.
My favourite website for subject teachers and teacher-librarians is a blog by the School Library Association of Victoria and the State Library of Victoria. It is called Bright Ideas and it can be found at: http://slav.global2.vic.edu.au/.

In 2010, I was invited to write an article about Digital Etiquette for FYI, which is one of the two journals that are published by SLAV. The article was published in Volume 14, Number 2, Autumn 2010. It reads as follows:

Digital Etiquette

The internet and digital technologies offer today’s students a vast array of educational and personal activities.Our duty as educators is to guide students to become responsible users of digital resources.  To ensure online safety of students, we need to be familiar with Web 2.0 tools, in order to be knowledgeable about how to use them safely and ethically.

Using ICT at Kilbreda College
At the beginning of each school year, students and parents and/or carers are expected to sign a Use of College ICT Resources Policy, which is printed in the student’s planner.  This declaration ensures that all students have read, and agreed to, the acceptable use of the school’s ICT technologies.  In addition, students receive guidelines that explain cyberbullying, in an attempt to prevent its destructive effects.  ICT technologies are provided for educational use only and the access of social networking sites is prohibited.
Education Package on Cyber Security Awareness
In 2009, the Australian Government produced an education package on cyber security awareness.  The interactive and self-directed budd:e modules are a follow-up to this. They aim to assist students to adopt secure online practices and behaviours. Cyber security topics covered by the modules include advice on malware, viruses, securing personal information online and social networking.  Although the modules have been designed for Years 3 to 9 students, others outside these age groups have found the package to be valuable. 
The modules are available free to all Australian schools through the Australian Government’s Stay Smart Online website at www.staysmartonline.gov.au or via a free CD that can be ordered online.  They are also found on Scootle, the Learning Federation’s educational resources portal at www.scootle.edu.au.
South East Water Competition
In August 2009, all Year 10 students at Kilbreda College were encouraged by the Science Co-ordinator, Kathryn Grainger, to enter a competition organised by the South East Water.  The task was to create a 30-second television advertisement designed to encourage teenage school students to use water wisely.  Included in the brief was the stipulation that students could use only material that was free of copyright restrictions.  During the research lessons that I gave to these classes, I showed them the Creative Commons website, where they could access music, quotes or images that would make their entries eligible for judging. 
Working in groups, three advertisements were filmed and submitted to South East Water.  One of these entries was awarded with an honourable mention.  The experience provided rich educational opportunities for all the participants.
Why write a Bibliography?
To avoid plagiarism, students record the references they have used to complete a task.  Writing a bibliography is a difficult task for a Year 7 student, but the opportunity to practise enables them to become more familiar with the correct order that is required when electronic and book resources are used for research.
Collaborating with teachers in all KLAs at Kilbreda College, Bernadette Kean and I, as Teacher/Librarians, assist students to research efficiently and effectively.  During these information literacy lessons, students are reminded of how to write a bibliography, using the Harvard “author-date” system.  How to guides are available on the Library’s website and in their school planner.  Hard copies are also displayed in the Library.  The bibliographies are corrected by the Teacher/Librarians for accuracy.  This ensures a meaningful follow-up to the instruction.
Notemaking, Not Notetaking.
Notetaking encourages plagiarism.  To avoid copying, students at Kilbreda College are instructed to use a Notemaking Template that has been adapted from one designed in 2004 by Carole Lawton at Mount Lilydale Mercy College.  During research lessons, Teacher/Librarians explain how to create a three-column table.  Students record their focus questions in the first column.  In the second column, students collect the relevant information and record it with its web address.  The purpose of the third column is to interpret the information and record it in dot points. 
This all-important third column allows students to reflect on their findings and present the facts in a meaningful format, in their own words.  Retention of information and genuine learning occurs by the interpretation of information.  By converting the information to their own words, students feel a sense of achievement in the knowledge that they know how to proceed to the next stage of the task.

Research Topic: _________________________________                       Name: ______________________

Keywords/Topic Questions
Information from internet sites
(cut and paste and ADD the URL)
Information in your own words
(in dot points)

Adapted from Carole Lawton – Mount Lilydale Mercy College, 2004
The Role of the Teacher/Librarian in the Future in Digital Citizenship
As information professionals, we must look for opportunities to be lifelong learners.  Our efforts to engage in Web 2.0 technologies will open the doors to the “web lives” that our students enjoy.  Only then can we fully experience the good and bad aspects that the internet and digital technologies offer us all.
Further reading:
Australian Government’s Stay Smart Online: www.staysmartonline.gov.au/
FYI Summer 2010
The Department of Education and Early Childhood Education website: www.education.vic.gov.au/management/elearningsupportservices/www/default.htm

Louise McInerney is a Teacher/Librarian and Library Coordinator at Kilbreda College in Mentone.