Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Book Spine Poetry Festival: The Best of 2017

Announcing the best Book Spine Poems of 2017!

Monday, May 15, 2017

#milclicks of the Week: Think Before You Click

This is a photo of our library bulletin board for nearly two academic school years.

We decided to have it up way before my involvement with the national round table discussion on Media and Information Literacy. At the time me and my staff were thinking of what to display on our bulletin board, I was already concerned with the online behavior of kids, mine and my students, in social media. With the national elections closing in last May 2016, we didn't bother changing it at all.

While there are more ways to create an impact in the promotion, campaign and teaching of Media and Information Literacy, information service through announcements, infographics, fliers and brochures aid in awareness building. A variation of this bulletin board can be done through a checklist or graphic organizer. The material changes from a public service announcement to a teaching aid that prompts reflection and evaluation of content that is available in social media.

It may simply look like this:

If you think the bulletin board display and the worksheet is useful, drop a comment. Let me know what you think!

Sunday, May 14, 2017

Call for Papers: The Rizal Library International Conference 2017

Fifty years ago, when the Rizal Library first opened, students were required to remain completely silent inside the premises, research was done by searching typewritten 3x5 cards and print indexes, and there were no computers on campus.

Fifty years later, the Rizal Library allows students to hold group discussions in designated areas, research can be done using print and electronic resources, and assignments can be written and printed on PCs and Macs.

The Rizal Library—along with other libraries in the Philippines, Southeast Asia, and the rest of the world—has changed with the times during the past five decades but its mission remains the same: to
facilitate learning.

This year, the Rizal Library International Conference, with “Click!” as its theme, aims to cultivate discourses on librarians' roles in expanding their network within the larger community, through culture and society, and in the field of communication and technology.


On its 50th anniversary, the Rizal Library invites librarians, professors, and enthusiasts to submit papers that explore the enrichment of library management and experience in Southeast Asia and
the rest of the world.

Suggested topics include:

Community: institutional collaborations, library partnerships,
librarian empowerment and capacity building, knowledge development

Culture and History: Southeast Asian studies and libraries, evolution
of cultures in literary texts, reading customs and practices

Communication and Technology: social media, source preservation,
accessibility, big data, data mining

Proposals should include the following:

Topic (choose from those enumerated above)
Paper abstract (maximum of 250 words)
Curriculum vitae with photo (indicate achievements and/or publications
within the last 5 years)

Please email proposals to  by 15 May 2017.

Please see the call for papers below and/or the website:

Important dates

15 May 2017 - Submission of paper proposals
15 June 2017 - Notification of accepted proposals
1 September 2017 - Submission of full paper
30 September 2017 - Deadline for early bird registration
16-18 November 2017 - Conference proper

For more information you may contact the following

Engracia S. Santos
Conference Chair
Ateneo de Manila University
 +[632] 4266001 ext. 5559/5564

Rosalyn Santos
Conference Co-Chair
Ateneo de Manila University
 +[632] 4266001 ext. 5559/5564

Kareen Banal
Head, Promotions Committee
Ateneo de Manila University
 +[632] 4266001 ext. 5554

Saturday, May 13, 2017

#ReadingWithoutWalls (2 of 2)

Last week at school, I sent the Dean of Student Services and our Guidance Counselors an email requesting for their support in our Summer Reading Program.
One of my favorite authors, Richard Peck, once said that we (readers) can find ourselves in the pages of a book. Reading, like writing, may appear to be a solitary experience but, it is actually a shared encounter between the reader, the text and those who created the book. I believe that the book is a safe place where, apart from discovering ourselves in it, we as readers can open up to different worldviews of others. In many instances, it leads us to spaces where we can think, ask questions and seek the truth.

I wish to share this belief, which has become an advocacy, first to our students and hopefully to anyone willing to open a book and discover that it is one of the safest place to be one's self and encounter adventures, challenges and risks in life. Thus, our theme for this summer's reading program is #readingwithoutwalls. 
Comfort Zone by Gene Luen Yang and a display of books promoting inclusivity, diversity and empathy
We are recommending books about inclusivity, diversity and empathy. We can also work together in identifying books that meet the academic and developmental needs of our Griffins. Kindly help us spread the word.
After setting up a spread of books for recommendation and putting up our library bulletin board campaigning for #readingwithoutwalls, the email was the next step in the process. By next week, I will be making an announcement during the school Assembly on the Summer Reading Program for 2017.

Reading Programs are best implemented with the help of the community. Remember, it takes a village to raise a child.

The 2017 Alcala Prize Winner

Here is the official press release of the PBBY on the winners of the 2017 Alcala Prize.
Art Student Bags 2017 PBBY-Alcala Prize

This year’s PBBY-Alcala Grand Prize winner is art student Sophia Lorraine Demanawa, from the Ateneo De Manila University. Demanawa is studying Information Design and is an active member of Blue Indie Komiks (BLINK). She earned the judges’ unanimous vote for her “fresh” portrayal of Genaro Gojo Cruz’s  Dalawa Kami ni Lola. Gojo Cruz’s story bagged the 2017 PBBY-Salanga Prize. Aside from illustrating, Demanawa also enjoys making comics, designing gig posters, and writing poetry.

Four other illustrators were chosen as Honorable Mention: Arade Louise Villena, Mary Grace Theresa Dulawan, Christian Oliver Cruz, and Irene Rose Buenaventura.

The winners will be awarded at the National Children’s Book Day (NCBD) celebration on July 18, 2017 at the Cultural Center of the Philippines.

For inquiries about the contest and the NCBD celebration, contact the PBBY Secretariat at telephone number 352 6765 loc 204 or e-mail
 Below are the entries of Ms. Demanawa that wowed the judges of this year's Alcala Prize.

What an intimate portrayal of a relationship between lola and apo!

The contrast of colors, orange and blue, sucks you in the moment of rest and motion.

Warm, endearing, sentimental. Pinoy na Pinoy!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Book News: 2nd Printing and New Bookmarks

My Daddy, My One and Only has been reprinted! I learned about this good news from my publisher via Facebook (where else do you get "breaking news" these days but in social media, right?). I have one copy of the first print and, yes, I am getting myself a copy of the second reprint!

And since Jomike Tejido and I finished another book, here's a look at our promotional bookmark. Super thanks to Mennie Ruth Viray for the design and layout.

Sunday, May 7, 2017

#ReadingWithoutWalls (1 of 2)

Free comic: Comfor Zone by Gene Luen Yang
I follow YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) over at Twitter and it was there where I found Comfort Zone, a short comic by Gene Luen Yang.

The story seems autobiographical. A young Gene Luen Yang, considered an oddity by his peers finally found a place and space to stand out at computer camp. There he meets a friend and the approval of his peers. When a new kid comes along, they pick on him and his annoying habits. What comes around goes around? Bullying is a vicious cycle. Who ever said revenge is sweet? The young Gene Luen Yang doesn't think so as he felt remorse for an unkind act that haunted him for years.

Now, as the National Ambassador of YA Literature and Teen Tech Week 2017 in the US, Gene Luen Yang spends his time and acclaimed success as graphic comic creator helping teachers and librarians of young people grow in compassion and empathy. Indeed, none us is too old or too young to turn in a new leaf, to start a dream or set forth a new goal.

The social media campaign, #ReadingWithoutWalls is the punch at Comfort Zone's ending. YALSA and Mr. Yang invites and encourages everyone to:
* Read a book with a character who doesn't look or live like you.
* Read a book about a topic you don't know much about.
* Read a book in a format you don't normally read for fun.
Visit the Children's Book Council for more freebies: posters, PDFs of fliers and brochures. The reading program and campaign began last year during Teen Read week, but like what I said earlier, it is never too late to do a good deed, to dream a new dream or to set a new goal. Better late than never!

Go to the YALSA website too. It is also a good source to find out more about Gene Luen Yang and the #ReadingWithoutWalls social media campaign.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Teacher and School Librarian Collaboration: Search Strategies for Grade 9 (1 of 2)

Print sources, primary and secondary
Early in April, our grade 9 English teacher requested for a library session on search strategies and information sources. The timing couldn't have been any better since this batch of grade 9 students are preparing for the Personal Project that will start early in the first term of academic year 2017-2018.

The Personal Project is an interest based project that students in 10th grade are expected to finish to cap off their learning in the Middle Years Program. The project may take the form of a website about ADHD or cancer awareness, a livelihood program of Macrame products, a self designed fitness program, a compilation of songs composed and sung, a prototype of a drip system for a hydroponic garden, a self-help book on surviving high school life, a notebook made from recycled paper to be sold as fund raiser for a favorite charity. The list is endless and the only limitation is the student's creativity and imagination. Parameters are set, of course, and this is where the IB guides come in.

That is another story. Back to the library lesson.

Since the context has been laid down, I intended to extend the lesson beyond the Personal Project by introducing the basics, at the same time, open windows of possibilities.

What students get from the library session must be something they can use in other tasks and can be translated into skills that will further help them fashion sophisticated ways and processes of thinking. For example, learning about Boolean search strategies can lead to critical and creative thinking especially in the use of words. From simple key words, students can scale up to use synonyms for their search terms, and eventually develop a built-in, internal thesaurus. As a librarian, I may be giving them a session on searching online databases and search engines, but with constant use -- and consistency -- students, in time, can grow a vocabulary that they can use according to a subject matter; a vocabulary they can use to search for answers and derive meaning from a variety of media and technology.

Search Tips ala-Google
A basic knowledge of the most popular search engine in town, Google, can lead to an exploration of other search engines that present data in numbers, graphics and semantic web. Search engines crawl for websites, images, videos, PDFs, slides and databases based on key words used. Knowing different search engines and what information it can give back is another strategy that can grow into skills in selection and location on the appropriate use of technology.

What would make this possible is the regular team teaching effort and initiative between teacher and the school librarian. If this is impossible, at least, an intervention of the school librarian to remind teachers on the use of strategies in searching for information online or in print environments need to happen. The intervention can be done through announcements, meetings, in-service training, information campaigns in physical and virtual spaces of the library that are accessible to the members of the learning community. That is why, a matrix or a manual of research skills is essential. More on this in another post.

So where did I begin?

I asked for a copy of the English teacher's unit plan. And boy, did I learn lots along the way as well!~
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