Wednesday, October 26, 2005

November Events

I'm two posts behind schedule, but I'm posting these events and going ons for next month just in case you are out of Internet reach for the long weekend and Holiday ahead.

- All alumni of PNU are invited to attend both the General Assembly and Forum. Build your network and renew your ties. Tag or leave a comment. Non-alumni are just as welcome to the forum.

The PNU Library and Information Science Alumni Association, Inc. will be holding its 5th annual general assembly this coming Novermber 26 at the PNU Library Conference Room from 8 am to 12 noon.

There will also be a forum on
Reading in the Age of Technology
with Dr. Diljit Singh from the Department of Information Science of the University of Malaya, in Malaysia as guest speaker. Dr. Singh will be discussing the importance of reading in the age of information technology and how school librarians and teachers play a crucial role in enhancing reading skills. He will also present possible schemes and strategies in organizing libraries in schools with limited resources taking into consideration the context and culture of the learning community.

Registration fee is 250 pesos.

**From PATLS and the Book Talk Society of the Philippines -

To usher in the Library and Information Month, the National Book Week Subcommittee on Special Projects in cooperation with the Philippine Association of Teacher of Library Science (PATLS), Book Talk Society of the Philippines (BTSP), and the PNU Library and Information Science Alumni Assoc. (PNU-LISAA) a series of activities will be held on 28 October 2005 from 8 am to 5 pm at the Associacion de Damas de Filipinas located at Quirino Ave., Paco, Manila.

There will be an outreach program for the abandoned children of Damas, a book talk on "12 Little Things Every Filipino Can Do To Help Our Country", and a lecture-forum on the Librarians' Role in Information Literacy in a Borderless Society with Peachy Limpin and yours truly as resource speakers. Prof. Randy David will be presented with the Ama ng Panulat at Pamulatang Sosyolohiyang Pinoy award and Prof. Emerita Quito will be presented the Ina ng Panulat at Pamulatang Pilosopiyang Pinoy award.

Seminar fee is 300 pesos which will cover food and certificates.

**Original source for the press release is Ms. Peachy Limpin.

From the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators -

Paseo de Roxas, Makati
Facing Asia Tower and AIM
Book Talk!
A round-table discussion of children's books

Host : SCBWIphilasia
The Philippine chapter of the Society of Children's Book
Writers & Illustrators (SCBWI)
Come and join us

When : 2nd Monday, 2005 November 14 from 6 to 9 p.m.
Where : McCafe, Paseo de Roxas, Makati (facing AIM)
Bring : A children's or young adult book you can talk about.
We will try our best to let everyone speak, so come on time.
Food : Everyone pays for his or her own snack and drink.
Fee : P100. For current SCBWI members, it's P50.

Tell us if you're coming
Contact : Ani Almario, 0917-628-7546 or
Nikki Garde Torres, 0917-6671267 or
Beaulah Taguiwalo, 0917-787-4956 or

Monday, October 24, 2005

Bloglet Subscription

It must be the change in template that disabled BLOGLET in SLIA. Please tag or leave a comment if you get notices of updates from SLIA.

I also suggest that you do some readings of previous entries.

Basic or Beyond

Two questions that struck me in my recent accreditation:

1. Is technology as applied to library services and programs a basic component to have or is it an advanced "feature" that can be adapted once collection, staffing and management are in place?

2. When can (Philippine) school libraries claim their rightful place as the "hub", the "center" and the "core" of its academic soul?

It seems that technology as applied to school library services is an extra and not a must-have to boost the staff's skill and competence; nor is it considered a tool to augment and strengthen the collection; nor is it a strategy to upgrade its programs and services. Teachers are exploring and learning technology for use in instruction. Can school administrators afford to leave the library behind?

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Scouting Month in the Library

October is Rosary Month. It is also the month when the Boy Scouts of the Philippines celebrates and commemorates Scouting Month.

In line with this, the GS LRC staged an exhibit in coordination with the Scouting Club of Xavier Grade School. With the help of Mrs. Bubles Sudario, Student Activities Coordinator, Mr. Enzo Fuentes, Music Art and Computer Coordinator and Mr. Marc Magsalin, Assistant Principal for Unit 2 and Scout Master the exhibit successfully opened yesterday, October 17, 2005. Through the exhibit, grade School students will be able to see and witness how a Xaverian alumni, Scout Master John Dee De Guzman, can contribute and reach out to the society and the global community through scouting.

Scout De Guzman (Batch '67) is an established engineer/businessman and a successful scouter. He has trained scouters in national and international camping, jamborees, meets and conferences. He holds the rank of Silver Tamarraw.

oct17act 055

miniature camp


scout deguzman

scouters all

Photos are courtesy of Mr. Tony Resurreccion.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

As a Children's and *YA Services Librarian...

If your clients are children and teenagers, please READ this post. It is of importance to school librarians like you and me. If you are highly concerned about what Pinoy children and teenagers are reading so you can provide them the reading materials that they need and are appropriate to their level, do READ this post. And if you want to know what a 15 year old teenager is clamoring to READ, you MUST read this post. If you are not interested at all, you know where I will put you in the librarians' two school's of thought (of course I'm kidding! There is still time to redeem yourself. Joke!).

To understand where the whole story begins, go to this site. To know the sequel, go to this site. After going to both sites, go back here in SLIA, read my post and comment all you want. I will not take it against you. Promise!

Then again, you may not want to go back and forth from one blog to another. You're Internet connection may be slower than snail mail. So, I'll just summarize the whole issues as briefly as I can.

A 15 year old reader wrote Butch Dalisay asking why she could not find, locate and buy any Young Adult novel in the bookstores today written by Filipino writers. Butch Dalisay, the Filipino Literary giant that he is, replied as best as he could. But Carla Pacis who writes for children and young adults gave better answers as one who writes for her audience. So if you want to know the "nitty-gritty" of it all, go to the links I cited earlier.

Now, as a school librarian, I am deeply concerned about the clamor and lament of this young 15 year old reader. Call me over-acting (OA), but there are valid reasons why.

First Reaction. Why would the teenager reader go to a bookstore and not in her school library or public library to find and locate books to read for RECREATION? Yes, bookstores are more accessible than the school library or public library, but aren't libraries supposed to provide books and reading materials both for education and entertainment. Libraries are too identified with research, academic endeavors and scholarly undertakings. Nothing wrong there. Then again, learning can be fun. Libraries are capable to do that, to give the "fun factor" to its clients particularly to children and teenagers. Unfortunately, this is not made manifest in Philippine school and public libraries. Why? I think I've written bits and pieces about it in my previous posts.

Second Reaction. Like what Carla Pacis told Butch Dalisay, there is a group of Pinoy writers producing literature for Pinoy children and teenagers. KUTING is trying its best to finally realize the publication of BAGETS, an anthology of short stories for teenagers and adolescents that discuss their issues, their whims and their awesome and painful stage of life.

Third Reaction. Pinoy children and teenagers must be exposed to the values, beliefs and heritage of their culture through the literature that they read, either crap or Palanca best. Our Filipiniana collection for children and teenagers is very limited. How then can they appreciate their identity (both self and national) if they could not taste a flavor of Pinoy literature? You might be raising an eyebrow, thinking that our kids are growing in a global world so why let them read Filipiniana? Sweetheart, before they can contribute and compete in the global arena, they must know who they are and what they are made of. They must bring in something unique and different from themselves or they'll be like everyone else.

Pinoy writers of kid's lit these days maybe beating their chest, pulling their hair and gnashing their teeth to get published for their intended audience. Publishers of kid's lit maybe in their discerning moods, praying to God which among the many manuscripts they have in their hands are worth of publication. Teachers maybe forever on the lookout for books as required readings in his/her literature class. This could be the present scenario that make me to ask, what about school librarians?

What are we doing to help promote readership of Filipiniana for children and young adults? Are we too concerned with technical task and clerical tasks in the library that we lose sight of the needs of our readers? Are we too hooked on IT magic and how it can lighten our technical and clerical jobs that we could not translate its magic to better readers' services? Are we concerned to provide reading materials to our child readers? How do you see yourself, as a school librarian in the development of literacy and the appreciation of one's culture? Are the technical and clerical work we do just an end to itself or a means to an end?

What is the end? I'd appreciate a comment or two.


*Young Adult

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

ANIMALAYA in Xavier Grade School

The Animalaya Exhibit of Ang INK and Haribon had a successful and simple opening last Monday, October 10, 2005.


Here are more pictures from the exhibit's first days.


hubert's hit

green and happy

Photos are courtesy of Mr. Oyet Concepcion.
commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Why libraries? Why not?

There is this comment in Filipino Librarian that I will dissect. You may find it petty, and some may argue that it is the person's opinion so better leave it. Sorry, but I can't just leave it. Take this as an "intellectual" discourse -something that we all can think and ponder.

But before I do that, I suggest you go and read Filipino Librarian's post where the comment was made. That way, you have a working schema and an understanding to where I'm coming from. Just click the bold FILIPINO LIBRARIAN in the first paragraph and you're there.

Here is the comment-
depends. it's individual for everyone. sometimes you just gotta own your own copy of a book. sometimes it's best to just borrow. what's with the inferiority comples w/librarians these days anyway? a substantial amount of them always seem to be saying "what about us! look at us! helloooo!!" books are good, music is good, information is good. so potentially are the places that serve them: stores, internet, libraries, and informal places. who cares. each has it's own pros and cons.

First dissection - sometimes you just gotta own your own copy of a book. sometimes it's best to just borrow.

Yes. Agree. I do have my own collection of books though I'm working in a school library. I'm proud at my school library's collection, print, AV and online, however, it is a school. I have my own reading needs and interests to fill and satisfy that my school's library could not. Isabel Allende and Niel Gaiman are treasures to have, but how many "children" will read them? There are teachers who may borrow fiction also, but their professional needs come first in the school. Instead of buying a book about teaching strategies that cost Php 1,500, they can borrow a variety of books on the same topic in the school library.

There are different kinds of libraries catering to particular and special needs of clients. Libraries also cater to a specific reading public. Bookstores do not. Libraries offer alternative titles and more options for its clients. Bookstores offer what they have in the shelves.

One time, I was looking for Dean Alfar's Siglo (you must have figured that he's one of my favorite Pinoy writers for I always mention him in my blogs, but really, his wife Nikkiwrites better)and it turns out that the poor boostore ran out of copies. The poor saleslady could not give me an alternative, where as, a librarian who has a content and product knowledge of the library's collection can lead me to other titles of graphic novels or the speculative fiction genre.

Second dissection - what's with the inferiority complex w/librarians these days anyway? a substantial amount of them always seem to be saying "what about us! look at us! helloooo!!"

Current research shows that high degrees of student achievement is attributed to succesful library programs. Librarians are needed to run these programs. Librarians can teach and faciliatte learning. Libraries are learning laboratories. Are bookstores venues for learning? Are sales people in the bookstores have the educational preparation to facilitate learning?

Bookstores help libraries and libraries help bookstores. But in the case of the Pinoy reading and learning experiences, bookstores supercede libraries as learning avenues. If one needs a book, one goes to the bookstore. Now I don't blame people who do go to bookstores because, public libraries are lacking in the Philippines. That's reason enough why librarians must make a loud noise on the importance of libraries.

If you hear or encounter a librarian lamenting ""what about us! look at us! helloooo!!", be glad that you meet that kind. That librarian does not have an INFERIORITY COMPLEX. That librarian has a clear understanding of his/her role in the individual lives of people and in society at large.

Third dissection - books are good, music is good, information is good. so potentially are the places that serve them: stores, internet, libraries, and informal places.

With this last part of the comment, let me address my fellow librarians who are reading this post. If a person exist with this kind of "perception" about information, it's retrieval, location and access, it implicates that as a professional group, we have to strive harder. We must impact the lives of people we meet, interact and serve. And as we push further to the digital age, the challenge to do so is greater.

Back to Filipino Librarian's question. Are bookstores better than libraries? My answer is a resounding NO.

What if we turn the question over. Are libraries better than bookstores?

Do librarians always have to be on the defensive end all the time? Librarian or not, I want to hear you say your piece. Go on. I won't bite.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Filipino Writer (dot) com

The Internet never cease to amaze me.

With the help of my tracking system, I'm able to see who visits and referrers to my blog. Last week, I was pleasantly surprised to find the KUTING Workshop announcement in Filipino My discovery of Filipino was a timely one. Fueled by the Philippine Literature discussion in Ian Casocot's blog and in Dean Alfar's observations on what it means to be "literary" in the Filipino novel in his blog, I began crawling the web for publishing opportunities for Filipino writers. I told myself at that time that If I find one, I'll blog about it and promote its readership.

Winning awards left and right is one thing, but being read is another. A writer may win accolades and awards for writing exceptional literature, but if it is not published (in the case of some Palanca winners) read, reviewed, discussed, tried and talked about, the writer's work is dead. Filipino librarians have a stake in helping Philippine literature come live. We can nurture Philippine literaure.

And so, I am encouraging my subscribers and readers to go visit Filipino Read the many works of Filipino writers there. Be a member (free). Comment and give feedback on the writings, articles and literature.

It's objectives are the following: aims to help every kind of Filipino writer –- technical, commercial and literary -- improve his or her lot, especially financially. It also aims to encourage Filipinos to read works by Filipino writers, and thus promote a "reading culture" among Filipinos. Finally, aims to popularize Filipino-written works in the international scene.

I hope the girl who wrote Butch Dalisay gets to read this. Or better still, discover Filipino Can someone send the email of Butch Dalisay?

Sunday, October 9, 2005


I value all kinds of comments and feedback from my workshop participants and/or blog subscribers. Here's what I got from my mail from Yen Operio.

I've just finished my demo yesterday and it was a
successful one. The principal was so impressed. I'd
like to give you credit for that. Thank you so much. I
storytell "The greediest of rajahs and the whitest of
clouds" by Honoel Ibardolaza.
I've added some techniques and I've included
some story I've learned in the seminar.

Yen attended my Storytelling seminar-workshop in Phoenix Educational Systems Inc. last September. Congratulations Yen!

Friday, October 7, 2005

Friend of the Library

How often do you get to read a blog post about libraries from non-librarians? Imagine my delight to discover this blogger who made a comment in Von's blog. Libraries need "friends" like her!

Wednesday, October 5, 2005

Teacher Writer

Today is World Teachers Day! Mabuhay ang mga Gurong Filipino!

Teachers are in a very good position to spot materials for stories that children can enjoy and relate with. The school environment, with its children coming and going day in and day out, is filled with all kinds of voices waiting to be heard. One teacher, Kristin Canon, was perceptive enough to the voices, little as they may be, that she hears and listens to every school day.

Having listened to a niece's story after school one day, inspired her to write Bakit Matagal ang Sundo Ko. It won her the PBBY Salanga in 2001.


The story started when the school day ended. Roller bags were racing to the gates as students rush home. Yayas and drivers, mommies and daddies fetched their kids one by one but for a little girl who was left behind as her mom has not arrived yet to pick her up. Wrought with worry, the young girl imagined all the possible reasons why her mom wasn't there yet at the school gates. And what fantastic images she conjured in her mind! Mariano Ching lends his playful style of illustration to make this story a reassuring read for the young reader who has experienced waiting for so long by the gates of the school.

Canon wrote in Filipino and magnificently captured the angst of a waiting child. Her own experiences as teacher and mother helped in framing the character's coping mechanism. Her familiarity with chidlren's thought processes was an advantage. In the story, Canon depicted her lead character as a natural dreamer. Aren't all children? They can retreat into a corner of their minds to nurse their suffering mental state. The little girl in the story build on make-believe situations to calm and reassure herself. Upon exhausting all possible imagined reasons, her mother came just in time to prevent her tears from falling.

They say teachers have no time to write with all the work load. With Canon's example, teachers who wish to write and get published better start managing their time well. Who knows, you, dear teacher, may be the next Salanga awardee!

Related Post - 2006 PBBY SALANGA PRIZE

Tuesday, October 4, 2005

FYI: Links in Categories, Comments and Suggestions

My dear subscribers,

Thank you for patronizing School Librarian In Action. For the past seven months now, I've been posting topics of relevance to Children's Library Services, Information Literacy, IT Integration in Basic Education, Philippine Children's Literature and Reading Advocacy. I hope that the ideas, news, trends, tips and suggestions, information, reviews, facts and opinions you read in SLIA are all very helpful. To further assist you with whatever SLIA provides you with, I have added links to the four categories in my sidebar.

I've added Dean Alfar's Rosang Taba under YAP: The Pinay in Children's Literature; Technology Bytes has three new links from my previous posts; and teachers and parents may find 10 Reasons to Invest in Children's Literature an interesting article so I included it under Reading & Literacy Advocacy.

Keeping this blog for the past seven months has been delightful. You have no idea how therapeutic it has been for me. But of course, my objectives of managing information and knowledge, as well as promoting school librarianship will always be paramount to its existence. I welcome all your comments and suggestions for improvement.


In Memoriam

IASL mourns the passing of Dr. Anne Clyde while, the UP Institute of Library and Information Science prayerfully remembers Prof. Divina Pascua-Cruz who died last September 30, 2005.

Let us pray for the repose of their souls. May they both rest in peace.

Monday, October 3, 2005

Marketing the School Library

Von Totanes, in his blog, Filipino Librarian (I've dropped "the") has identified the guiding principles of marketing. I suggest you print a copy of this and share it with colleagues. Or, in your next departmental meeting discuss the issue of marketing the products you offer to your clients. Better yet, consider devising a marketing plan for two or three years that is anchored on departmental goals.

This way, you can prepare logistics for the marketing strategies you wish to do. Aside from the "money" issue, identify other resources to help you realize your marketing plan. It may be another library, a foundation, a publishing house, a book dealer/jobber, the local government, the alumni association or the school's parents association. Collaborating with them lightens the load and widens your connections. Networking is always good for the library for it to survive. Just make sure that objectives are clear and that the benefits will always go to the library's clients.

You may think that only the library coordinator is in the know of such decisions, plan or strategy. Again, I reiterate the importance of leadership both in the top level and in the ranks. The force must be strong on both poles or there will be an imbalance. Goals may not be realized and resources (including money) may go down the drain. When this happen, your clients are short changed.

Lastly, marketing is one way to improve an image problem. School librarians need a make over. We do. Let's admit it. Start with polishing your communication skills. Reflect on your role in the school community. Be prepared. Plan ahead. Plan long term. It will not be easy, but it can be done.
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