Blog Undergoing Overhaul?!

If you are a faithful follower, as you no doubt have noticed, I’ve not been a very regular blogger.  Life and professional duties have kinda gotten the best of me lately.  As you may know, in March 2011 I agreed to be President Elect of the SC Association of School Librarians (SCASL) which is a three year commitment (President Elect, President and Immediate Past President) that comes with a range of new responsibilities on top of those already incumbent upon me as the full-time librarian of a high school!   No excuses, it just meant that the blog took a back seat on my priority list.  I’m also not one who likes to toot her own horn so writing about what I was doing here on my personal blog seemed inappropriate if I wasn’t going to be doing so in the official SCASL spaces — and much of what I’ve been doing was devoted to SCASL and less was devoted to my school and students.  Which now that my leadership term is up I can remedy! But I digress.

If you are reading this from an RSS reader you may not know that the blog is undergoing an overhaul.  New theme, new header image (one of my own!) and I’m updating the sidebar widgets.  I’m also considering changing the title if I can come up with a catchy one – especially since this really hasn’t been much of a “Timely Tidbits” blog lately nor have I been sharing any “Tech Tips”.  [Suggestions for a new title are welcome - leave them in the comments or email them to me!]

So those of you who are still with me, thank you, and I hope those who have abandoned me will come back!

 

Its Official – Another School Year is about to Begin!

As I write this I have just (well a couple three or four hours ago) finished updating our school’s faculty AND student handbooks and they’ve been sent off for printing.  Yep, almost last minutes as always!  Hopefully, not too many errors will be found.  Time always seems to sneak up on me and summer seems to slip by so quickly.

With new beginnings logically something has to end, and for me it just wasn’t summer.  June 30th marked the end of my term as President of the SC Association of School Librarians.  I do have to say the organization has the best going away “gift” of sending outgoing Presidents to ALA Annual – this year in Chicago.  I was there with current President, Anne Lemieux, President-Elect, Diana Carr, and Past President, Kathy Sutusky.  We had a blast exploring Chicago and attending ALA events and AASL Affiliate Assembly.   My photos can be found on my Flickr account.

Since School has let out I have attended SCASL Summer Institute, ALA Annual, Upstate Technology Conference, SCASL’s Board Retreat, and one day of my district’s iPad 1:1 initiative’s 3 day training.  In between all that I had a “regular” doctors appointment for follow-up blood work (all normal!) and a neurologists appointment for my migraines (of which I’ve had 7 days of migraines and 6 days of ‘regular’ headaches this summer).  Only one very mild migraine episode since going on new medication, but vertigo symptoms as a side effect so not sure its been a good trade off!  hopefully it will taper off.  This to say that I’ve been very slack and not read a single young adult book or school related/professional journal, book, or magazine all summer.  Oh, but I been reading plenty of “me” books (in other words complete waste of time, entertainment, or as my uncle says “smut books”) and have been looking through my three travel guides to London and Edinburgh for my upcoming trip in September (Yippee!!)

More immediate excitement for both me and my students stems from the library (and most of the school) getting brand new carpeting/flooring – it looks really nice – well as nice as institutional carpeting can look! I’m told I’ll we’ll be getting paint touch ups, on the door trimmings, too!  I wish I’d taken some before and after photos.  Darn it!   The custodial staff is gonna help me move furniture back where it belongs next week.   The carpet guys did a pretty good job putting most of it where it was, but not quite where it should be – or where I want.   It will probably take me weeks to get everything else put back in place – or find new homes for things.

The computer guy(s) are working diligently to get the desktops and laptops back up and running – as not only did the computers get moved out, they were migrated from the Novell to Windows!  I don’t envy the tech guys their jobs!  We have WAY lots of computers and laptops for them to deal with and it seems every time I turn around they have to come back and tweak each and every one of them all over again!

Gonna be lots of changes for both faculty and staff to adapt to when they get back in a couple weeks!  Yep, I said it.  Only two weeks from today teachers come back!

Blind Date with a Book

On February 1st, Wagener-Salley students were greeted with a new display – Blind Date with a Book.

How it works: Students are asked to use the “dating” profile on the heart to decide if they want to take a shot at a date with the mystery book.  They were warned that by choosing to date one of these books they were agreeing to write a review of their date.  They have to read at least 2-3 chapters before they give up – and must still provide a review for why they didn’t like their date (hence why they gave up on it.)

I finished creating the display before going home Thursday, and Friday morning after only 2 hours the display was practically empty.  It was completely empty by 2:00 pm Friday!  Now, I just have to wait for the dates to be over and the students’ dating reviews!

I first heard of this display/program on the YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) listserv.  Then saw this awesome post by librarian Rachel Montgomery, Teen Librarian at the Mooresville Public Library (Indiana) and was truly inspired by (and borrowed) her display’s dating profiles.  Since I didn’t have very many of the same titles, I put out a plea to some of my colleagues and Cathy Nelson came through with enough fill in profiles from previous SC Young Adult Book Award Nominee titles that I was able to create the above display.  If you want to see more photos of the display, including a close-up of one of the mystery books, you can find them on my Flickr site: http://www.flickr.com/photos/hloy22/