Sunday, July 17, 2005

IASL Conference ( A Continuation )

I'm back in Manila and for the past few days I have been busy preparing for echoing, aside from smoothing out some series of unexpected events in my life. Life is really a box of chocolates.

Anyway, apart from the pleasurable tour of The Hong Kong University Museum of Art and a Cantonese Primary School near Stanley, there are four paper presentations that I sat in during the last few days of the conference that I find relevant and interesting. These were presentations by Diane Mackenzie, Ross Todd, Dana Dukic and Pru Mitchell.

Dianne Mackenzie gave a workshop, actually, on managing web resources. Although I have a very good idea on how I would put together valued web resources for my students and teacher clients, her workshop is one where I can learn a lot from. And I did. She provided very useful sites to help both teachers and students.

In my case, I am more comfortable with blogs therefore, my desire to improve mine as well as the GS LRC's is very strong. To do this entails so much time and effort. At the back of my mind, I realized that we (Pinoy School Librarians) have not really experimented on the full potential of the Internet to improve library and information services. Our academic counterparts may have gone way ahead of us, but we have gone only as far as using a telescope in cyber space. We have not taken off , yet.

Pinoy School Librarians may be busy with ICT's and library automation, but to use ICT's to create, manage and share knowledge is still left to be desired. We're still hampered by traditional roles that somehow does not answer realistic needs of our clients in the school.

Ross Todd's research paper was very impressive. I used to just read him in SLJ. Last week, I was a witness to a current research he did with Carol Kuhlthau. He said that he will be visiting Manila sometime in March - April. I think he was refering to the CONSAL. Again, the premise that school librarians must be active participants in student learning was drummed up so well that I am inspired to replicate a similar research with in the context of the Philippine educational system. Ambitious! I know. But seriously, I still have to finish my MLIS. *wink*

Pru Mitchell from the Australian Association of School Librarians shared the standards that their organizations had drawn up. Two things caught my attention from their standards - one, they (Aussie Teacher Librarian)took the initiative to develop it before the ministry of Education did and two - the standards were all descriptors of what a an excellent school librarian must be. (I will post another entry on this since I have plenty to say about this topic)

And then, there was Dana Dukic research on the reading strategies of HK Primary grades students when choosing books for recreatory reading. The room was full! That only goes to show how READING remains to be an important skill that school librarians are concerned with. In her research, she mentioned the different strategies involved when reading print and electronic resources. Mothers, teachers and friends play a role in their strategy for choosing recreatory reading materials. The knowledge of literary genre also scores a high percentage.

I have to agree with the research recommendation that for primary grades students to build on more sophisticated reading strategies, Information Literacy Skills Programs must be strengthened. Again, I will post another entry on this so I suggest you visit more often.

Till next post!

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