Final week #blogjune 20

Last week at school. Racing to get my bi-annual report done before Friday, book my tickets for our 2 week train jaunt around China, pack our bags, prepare gifts, clean the house, finish updating the Library policy, clear my desk…

And I get this page:

Screen Shot 2016-06-20 at 12.02.51 pm.png

What do you think the Chinese Government have against infographics? Every single site seems to be blocked. I’m even trying with the VPN on (which we are not supposed to use at school) and it still won’t load. *cry cry cry*

At least I have an outline for my bi-annual report – I’m borrowing the headings from my Library Policy, which I think is a stroke of genius but is more likely biting off more than I can chew (a particular skill of mine):

Library Mission, Aims, Goals etc

  • community profile

Library Services

  • Teaching and learning (or curriculum)
    • Overview
    • Library orientation
    • Collaborative teaching
    • Development of resources
    • professional development/training
  • Reader Services
    • Book Week
    • Panda Book Awards
    • Displays
    • Book talks, discussions, book groups
    • Reading lists
    • Classroom support e.g. guided reading
  • Tech support
    • ICT lab
    • laptop / ipad loans
    • Library website
    • Recommended sites and tools
    • Training
  • Use of library space
    • Bookings

Collection development

  • Collection snapshot
    • new books
    • new collections (home language, graphic novel)
    • new digital resources

Circulation

  • circ stats e.g. top 10 primary, top 10 secondary
  • top borrowing homerooms

Staffing

  • Snapshot
  • Professional development and training attended

Evaluation and Goals – moving forward

  • Library services
  • Collection
  • Circulation
  • Staffing

Can I finish for this for Friday?? If not, I will blame the internet 🙂

CompSIGH

Coding keeps haunting my brain. I was born just a little too late to have caught it the first time around – although I do remember having to enter simple code to get Nightmare on Elm Street or California Games booted up on our friend’s old computer. As I raise my daughter, it is suddenly everywhere – girls need to code: Code like a girlRails Girls,

Kids need to code, everybody needs to code: Hour of code

Including librarians, who are trying to set up new library management systems, or embed their OPAC into websites or blogs.

So I’ve signed up to a MOOC through Coursera: Computer Science 101, which I see other librarians have discovered before me. So far this morning I have discovered the Professor’s voice sounds a bit like Miranda Sings (well worth falling down the rabbit hole for – hilarious), but I have also CODED!

Screen Shot 2015-09-16 at 10.28.00 am

 

Fall

Too many Americans at our school this year. I’m starting to pronounce things with a twang. My daily blog posting is out of this world. Perhaps monthly would be a better aim?

dole queue

Apparently it’s recruiting season for international schools. A few of the other staff are in a flurry of CV writing and awkwardly asking SMT for references. I’m not sure what I’m doing. I’ve never had to worry about it before. My jobs have always come along when I needed them. I think qualified and experienced Teacher Librarians are a rarity.

Other teachers have registered with Search Associates and ISS and are heading off to job fairs. Kinda wish there was such a thing as an international librarian job fair. Not just school libraries, but all libraries. Imagine!
This time last year I was yearning to be back in public libraries. Now, I’m no longer 100%. I still miss them and miss loving going to work each day (wondrous feeling), but I’m also curious about what library life might be like if I actually worked at a decent school – one with a state of the art library, well resourced, a workable budget, technology in the library – and maybe even another librarian on campus.

Part of me is also curious to see where I could end up.

#blogjune 5 : travel planning

So far this #blogjune thing is boring the life out of me. I think we must be a little down at the moment. It’s almost the end of the longest school term in history, and as we went to Xi’an very Easter break we haven’t left China since early Feb. I think we have cabin fever.

We wanted (well I had anticipated) that we would do a lot more travelling on weekends – just roll up to the airport and fly wherever the winds took us. Unfortunately the city we are in is actually a satellite of another city, so it can take 2 hours to get to the airport. And you can’t just run out the front and hail a taxi. There’s some fascinating rule where they won’t cross the tunnel or bridge. So you have to figure out a myriad of buses, or book a driver. It sucks if you’re actually on the Qingdao side, at night, in the dark, with a child, and you cannot hail a taxi to get home. The school transport coordinator will book drivers for us, but that’s not always convenient. I’ve tried booking the driver myself but as lovely as he is when he drives us, he never shows up when I message 😒

So we feel like we haven’t really seen much. I am booking flights home for summer and wondering if we should stopover in Shanghai. We’ve been there a few times before, but am thinking we could stay in the French Concession or even on Suzhou for something different. No plans to go to Beijing at all – ugh! Our other options are Guangzhou (done), Shenzhen (done), Hong Kong (expensive & done), Seoul (some kind of flu virus scare there just now), Bali (hmm)…

 

 

#blogjune 4 : LMS

We have been in the process of upgrading our crummy 90s LMS to Follett Destiny library since November and IT finally sent the link today. My last library updated their software right before I left last year, so I have a little bit of experience, but mostly I am winging it. The difference is that this time nobody else knows any more than I do, so it’s all a little hectic. 

Earlier today I migrated Z sources into our database. Felt very librarian-y

  
I am glad to be learning this. I now understand and appreciate what my previous boss was going through when we updated Spydus. There are so many intricacies to it. And librarians don’t always have tech support or training, we just kill along figuring it out on our own. And still people (teachers, principals, local government managers and councillors) think we are only competent on scanning books.

The whole culture of people (in ignorance) looking down on librarians really gets to me. Sometimes to the point it makes me want to leave libraries. 

Rant – elists and the 21st century

Why are elists still a thing?

Recently one of the online networks I am a part of migrated from yahoo groups to schoology (ugly, clunky, difficult to navigate). I finally managed to find 5 hours in my day to navigate the site and get re-signed up. Shortly after I received an email telling me to ‘at least take time to upload profile pic and bio’ as this ‘helps the online community’.
Oh my god. 

Why don’t we just get with the times? Why do I have to have ANOTHER profile and ANOTHER platform?

Panda Awards

Discovered a very cool thing when I started here and joined the Beijing Librarians Network: the Panda Book a Awards. Librarians from international schools all over China nominate recently published works in 4 categories: younger, middle, older & mature readers. A steering committee shortlists them and schools buy the books and promote over summer. After Lunar New Year, online voting takes place.

Our books only just arrived, so we’re behind the 8-ball, which means our display looks a bit bare, but we’ve had enthusiasm from the kids, and staff are keen to get more involved next year.

Our display, with charts for readers to mark off which books they’ve read:

2015/01/img_1216.jpg

QR code linking to website for the awards:

2015/01/img_1209.jpg

I found the first question was “what do we win?” And as I have no idea that meant kids lost a lot of interest. Quite a lot simply don’t get the idea of “reading for pleasure” This is a struggle for me to adapt to, as I have always been a serious bookworm, but also because I’ve just spent 3 years in public libraries, where people come in because they love reading.

Hopefully get the kids more engaged over the next week or two before voting.