Wednesday, July 26, 2006

21st Century Librarians

Here are some key ideas from the EdTech Talk podcast with Joyce Valenza as synthesized by jschinker in his Taste of Tech blog:
  • Audio books can actually motivate students to do more reading.
  • There’s no “best” search tool.
  • Students need media resources 24/7.
  • Students need challenging projects that ask them to analyze, compare, synthesize, and draw conclusions.
  • TurnItIn and citation generators can be used to teach students how to write original work instead of simply policing plagiarism.
  • Schools have to be consistent about fair use and copyright law. Looking the other way with a wink and a smile doesn’t cut it.
  • Subscription databases are an information goldmine.
  • Blogs are the ultimate primary source. If you want to know what’s really happening in Iraq, read a soldier’s blog.
  • Google works best when asking very focused questions. “Which 20th century president did the most to promote civil rights?” is a hard question to answer with Google.
  • Researchers have to use multiple sources and compare and validate information.
I enjoy Joyce's blog even though I am not a librarian. I am very interested in her ideas and realize they are applicable to all teachers. Some of the ideas from the podcast are already a part of what I believe and practice, others are new to me (eg. subscription databases) and give me new areas to explore.

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