Saturday, February 28, 2009

Making an Impact Through Blogging

I'm still fresh from the wake of the UP FLIPP event last Monday. There are just somethings you cannot shrug off easily. In fact, my talk moved me to search for more blogs by Filipino Librarians. I found several good ones which I will link and feature in the coming days.

For today, here are two bogs by Pinoy librarians from Region 2- Cagayan Valley, my father's homeland. I still dream to touch base with librarians there.

The St. Paul University Philippines World Bank Knowledge Development Centeris a proactive and dynamic reosurce center committed to creating, sharing and applying knowledge for development.

The PLAI-CavRLC- The Cagayan Valley Region Librarians Council (CaVRLC)is a regional council of the Philippine Librarians Association, Inc. (PLAI) composed of librarians and information professionals in Region II. Membership is open to all licensed/registered librarians from Region 02, which covers the provinces of Batanes, Cagayan, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya and Quirino.

I wish these blogs wonderful blogging days! They may get their share of trolls and controversies through blogging, as all bloggers experience, but such challenges strengthen the stamina for blogging. Mabuhay ang Pinoy Blograrians!

Friday, February 27, 2009

The Butterfly Award

Corinne Robson of Paper Tigers sent me a blog award, known as the Butterfly Award. Now here are ten cool blogs by cool bloggers I know.

I used my own personal criteria for choosing them. For the sake of discussion, I based my choices on activity vs. dormancy; content; relevance; impact made in the blogosphere (pretty subjective, yes) and, of course, design and navigation.

Von Totanes of Filipino Librarian
Juned Sunido of Baratillo@Cubao
Arnold Zafra of Arnold Digital
Charles Tan of The Bibliophile Stalker
PLAI-STRLC of PLAI - Southern Tagalog Region Librarians Council
Janette Toral of Jannette
Jobette Escobinas of DepEd Teacher
Ian Casocot of The Spy In The Sandwich
Dean Francis Alfar of Notes From The Peanut Gallery
Fr. Johnny Go SJ of Pins of Light

This is a meme award and the rules for passing it on are:

1. Put the logo on your blog .
2. Add a link to the person who awarded you.
3. Award up to ten other blogs.
4. Add links to those blogs on yours.
5. Leave a message for your awardees on their blogs.

Spread some blog love!

MV Doulos: Books On A Ship

The floating bookstore is back!

MV Doulos will be docking at Manila on March 6, 2009. The ship is currently in Bacolod. I have not seen or been to the ship so going there for the first time sounds exciting. The website has a virtual tour and scheduled visits in the Philippines.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Book Talk & Storytelling Session

Reading educator Trixie Madamba leads the discussion on one of the most popular young adult series today. In this shortened version of our Reading Group Program, we look into the first volume, The Maze of Bones, by Rick Riordan.

Friday, February 27, 4PM and Saturday, February 28, 3PM
Children's Section, Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street
Admission is free!

Brought to you by The Center for East Asian Languages

Told with verve and vitality by the lively and animated teachers from the Julia Gabriel Centre for Learning Manila!

Sunday, March 1, at 3PM
Children's Section, Fully Booked Bonifacio High Street

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

LIS Congress 2009 Program

February 28, 2009 LIS Congress 2009:LIS Horizons: Opportunities and Modern Trends
Venue: College of Education Auditorium
Benitez Hall, UP, QC; 8 am to 5 pm
Sponsor: The UP Library & Information Science Students' Association


Opening Ceremonies
Welcome Remarks..Prof. Vyva Victoria M. Aguirre (Dean, UPSLIS)

Keynote Speaker: Hon. Herbert M Bautista (Vice Mayor, QC)

How to Market Libraries to Children Through Storytelling and Other Activities by Zarah Grace C. Gagatiga (Librarian, Xavier School)

Archives: An Overview by Emma M. Rey (Executive Director, Legislative Library and Archives-House of Representatives)

Blogging in Libraries and Ways to Expand Online Social Networks for Librarians by Juned Sonido (Blogger,

LISSAP History and Importance by Prof. Johann Frederick A. Cabbab (Asst. Prof., UPSLIS)

Coping Up with InfoTECH in Public Libraries by Edgardo B. Quiros (Chief, InfoTEC Division-TNL/Faculty, UPSLIS)

Decoding Fairytales:The Untold Story by
Prof. Johann Frederick A. Cabbab (Asst. Prof., UPSLIS)

Licensed or Not Licensed? by Mrs. Elnora Conti (BFL Member)

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Highlights from LibSpeak 2009

The day after LibSpeak 2009 bolted me up to reality.

It felt good to be back in UP Diliman after three semesters gone AWOL. Sorry po, tao lang (I am only human). The morning conference went well with such inspiring words from Dir. Sally Arlante and Dean Vyva Cruz. Wala pa ring kupas si Ma'am Arlante. She remains to be sharp, smart and sophisticated even to this day when retirement beckons like an old friend. Professors of the UP SLIS were present as well as librarians from the Main Library. The conference was a UP FLIPP initiative and the school gave its one hundred percent support. No wonder the UP FLIPPers were in smart casual attire. Other participants in the conference were high school students who were participants in the LIS Wizard Contest that afternoon. A contingent from Cebu Normal University was able to make it in time for the lecture of Prof. Von Totanes.

Von Totanes gave a substantial and realistic presentation on the future of LIS (Library and Information Science) graduates and the qualities needed for fresh graduates to succeed in the field. I hope he posts his lecture as it is essential for other readers of his blog to understand movements and changes in the LIS profession.

As for my presentation, I will post the essay in the next couple of days. For now, I would like to hammer on the contest which I launched during my talk to the UP FLIPPers, colleagues in the profession, mentors and students.

Instructions to the contest are as follows:

1. Write an essay, at least five paragraphs long, based on these two questions:
What is the effect of blogging to LIS professionals?
What forces do blogs wield upon libraries, librarians and information professionals?
2. The blogs used as examples in the talk/essay Blog It! The Impact of the Blogging Phenomenon to the Field of Library and Information Science must be read and cited as examples.
3. Send essays to
4. The best essay will be posted in SLIA (School Librarian In Action) and its writer will get a gift check as token.
5. Deadline for the submission of entries is on March 25, 2009.

Here now are the criteria.

1. Content - 40%
2. Organization and Composition - 30%
3. Relevance to the LIS issue in question - 30%

Happy writing and good luck!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

LibSpeak '09: Inculcate-Integrate-Innovate

UP FLIPP'sLibSpeak '09 will push through on Monday, February 23, 2009 at the UP Balay Kalinaw. I will be sharing my own personal experiences as a blograrian as well as observations on the impact of it to Library and Information Science.

Admission is free, so show up and don't be shy.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Storytelling 101 for Librarians* @ The LIS Congress 2009

*This is the abstract/description of my presentation for the LIS Congress on February 28, 2009 at the UP Diliman.

Storytelling is a proven technique to motivate children from coming to the library and for them to use its resources. In general, it is an effective marketing tool to promote the library. Through storytelling, the librarian’s role as an active player in literacy development is emphasized.

The paper discusses the nature of storytelling, its purpose and appropriate practice in library services for children and young adults. Simple ways to tell a story like reading aloud, oral telling and use of props and puppets will be demonstrated. A storytelling program that identifies the use of age-appropriate books for children is also included.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

The Future of Reading 2

The New York Times has a series of articles on reading in the digital age. Its journalists has written about the changing face and phase of reading in a digital environment. These articles could not have arrived at a better time than today.

On it's third run, The New York Times features a school librarian who went the extra mile to help young readers understand their way in the growing thicket of the Internet. Read part 1 and part 2.

The first article on online reading is interesting too. Research tells us that readers use the same comprehension and metacognitive skills involved in reading print resources when reading online materials. Then there's the story of a writer who extended his novel's conceit through video games online on the belief that, readers today do not only depend on print for pleasure, enjoyment and recreation.

Borders and barriers are breaking through our use of technology.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

CANVAS Launch Ecofables for Children

CANVAS ( proudly invites you to the launch of its latest book: CANVAS Tales - 3 Ecofables for Children, on Sunday, March 8 at 3pm at 1/of Gallery, Shops at Serendra, Bonifacio Global City, Metro Manila.

CANVAS Tales is a collection of three timely and timeless environmental stories for children, brought to life by three of the best young Filipina artists around.

*** The Hummingbird (author unknown, art by Plet Bolipata)
*** The King and the Royal Trees (by Paul Aird, art by Ivee Olivares-Mellor)
*** The Star Thrower (author unknown, art by Liza Flores)

CANVAS is a non profit organization dedicated to promoting greater awareness and appreciation for Philippine art, culture and the environment. For more information, please visit

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Call for Submission of Manuscripts to the 48th Silliman National Writers Workshop

The Silliman National Writers Workshop is now accepting applications for the 48th National Writers' Workshop to be held May 4-15, 2009 in Dumaguete City.

This Writers Workshop is offering fifteen fellowships to promising young writers who would like a chance to hone their craft and refine their style. Fellows will be provided housing, a modest stipend, and a subsidy to partially defray costs of their transportation.

To be considered, applicants should submit manuscripts in English on or before March 27, 2009 (seven to ten poems; or three to five short stories; or three to five creative non-fiction essays).

Manuscripts should be submitted in hard copy and on CD, preferably in MS Word, together with a resume, a recommendation letter from a literature professor or a writer of national standing, a certification that the works are original, and two 2X2 ID pictures.

Send all applications to Department of English and Literature, attention Prof. A.G. Soluta, Chair, Silliman University, 6200 Dumaguete City.

For information, please email Or go to the workshop website at

Saturday, February 14, 2009

A Reading Inventory

Sometime in early 2006, I posted a list of books I have read in 2005 in this blog. I remember making a promise to continue reading for the succeeding years and listing down the books I have read by the end of the year. But, real life has a way of snatching dreams and holding up promises. In short, I did read a lot in the span of three years but failed to take an inventory of the books and writers I've admired and abhorred.

Now here I am, blogging on Valentine's Day to catch up on a lost promise. Perhaps it will hold little interest to some of my readers, nevertheless, I will fulfill it for my own sake. I am a librarian, therefore, I read.

So here are current books I've digested at the start of the year. After the list, are books I remember reading since 2006. Some I reckon with fondness while a few are mentioned for less pleasant reasons.

January Reading List

1. 39 Clues: The Maze of Bones by Rick Riordan - Scholastic merges the best of several worlds - reading, gaming and the WWW . The publishing company who gave us Harry Potter is experimenting on an integration of mediums and so far, they have been successful. The series will hold an appeal for both readers and gamers but I find the merchandising too aggressive. It is an exciting read but the online games and the free game cards are for me a turn off. It robs me of the magic that the book is supposed to hold. I doubt if I would read beyond the third book since there will be actually ten books in the series. Riordan is a good writer. Korman tries to sustain what he begun, however, the prize and the merchandise keep me from suspending my disbelief.

2. Firebird Rising; An Anthology of Science Fiction and Fantasy edited by Sharyn November - I like reading anthologies because, it's like eating cookies. You pick two or three pieces from the cookie jar and you munch them one by one. So far, I've read five stories from the anthology and three of these delighted me to the bone. Dianne Wynne Jone's I Give You My Word tells of the power of the written and spoken word. The next time you use a dictionary, you better be sure where to use the word and how to wield its potency. In The House of Seven Librarians by Ellen Klages, I met all the librarian stereotypes and I could not help but cringe. It's a good thing Klages now her library science that she narrates the lives of her seven characters with dignity and respect. It's peppered with library humor too so the librarian stereotypes as described in the story can be overlooked. It's fantasy, besides. My kind has come a long way since.

3. The Tales of Beedle The Bard by JK Rowling - Superb craftsmanship and excellent rendering of conceit!

This month until summer, I have several anthologies to keep me sane and intact. I got Dahl's anthology for a very cheap price on sale and a good friend gifted me with Susan Vreeland's Life Studies. And of course, I will not miss Dean Alfar's Philippine Speculative Fiction Vol. 4 to be launched at the end of the month.

I am currently half way through the second book in the 39 Clues series and Gaiman's first Newberry, The Grave Yard Book shall soon be lent to me by a dear friend. Ah, to have friends and books!

Now here's a random list of books I have devoured and digested to make up for the past two or three years of missing a reading inventory.

The Princess Bride by William Goldman; The Twilight Saga by Stephenie Meyer; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JKR; Bagets; An Anthology of Young Adult Fiction edited by Pacis and Evasco; Widdershins by Charles de Lint; I Am Messenger and The Book Thief by Markus Zusak; Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince by JKR; Prince Ombra by Roderick Macleish; Rushdie's Haroun and the Sea of Stories; Lowry's Number the Stars; For One More Day by Albom; Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman; InkSpell by Funke; The Bartimeus Trilogy by Stroud; The Iron Man by Ted Hughes; The Legend of the Wandering King by Laura Gallego Garcia; PSF Vol. 3 edited by Dean and Nikki Alfar; Maus by Spiegelman; Coelho's Witch of Portobello; Hemmingway's The Old Man and the Sea; Alcott's Little Women; Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice; Dahl's Switch Bitch; Tolkien's The Hobbit; Children of Two Seasons by Lara Saguisag; Enrique El Negro by Pacis; The Faery Reel: Tales From The Twilight Realm edited by Terri Windling; Firebird: Anthology of Sci-fi and Fantasy edited by Sharyn November; The Night Monkeys; The Runaways; A Mouse Called Wolf; The Shredderman Vol. 3; Deltora Quest...and that's all I can remember for now.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Origami In The Library

The school library is a place that promotes excitement and engagement to activities geared to learning. Film viewings and storytelling sessions at lunch time are staple activities for our grade school students. Exhibits of works of art by students are a an added treat. Displays on glass classes, a collection of coins, Pokemon toys and dolls, souvenirs from trips abroad, pique the interest of the curious. Contests and games challenges the skills of the competitive.

Just yesterday, art and competition meet and match for the GS LRC's Origami Contest. It was a well participated contest with students from grade 2-4 as the main focus of the activity. There were nine contestants who registered and each brought with them their own origami paper. Indeed they came prepared because weeks before, they borrowed origami books for practice. The results were amazing!

Next to dinosaur books, origami books are a favorite of the students. The art of paper folding dates back to ancient China but has been adapted by other cultures. Japan was the most bedazzled by this art of precision, accuracy and neatness that the Japanese has enshrined this art form into the sublime. Along with Ikebana, origami espouses discipline and spiritual aesthetics. But of course, the contest was all for the spirit of fun and art development.

Winners of the contest were given certificates of recognition and a chance for their works to be displayed. A dinosaur, a scaled dragon and a rooster were the objects of the winner's piece. The activity was in coordination between the Art Department of the Grade School and the GS Learning Resource Center. Here we see another role of the school library -- a conduit to the integration of skills and disciplines.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Librarian As Poster Girl

My recent brush with AHON Foundation led me to their blog. And this was what I found!

Dir. Lou David of the Rizal Library poses for AHON's Book Registry project. Filipino librarians continue to break the known stereotype. TV appearances, participations in game shows and feature articles in magazines and newspapers are just some ways where in librarians figure beyond the expected image - geeky, strict, conservative, unexciting.

There's more to a librarian than meets the eye.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Villa in Manila

In memory of Jose Garcia Villa, Poet Laureate and National Artist for Literature.

Manila has recognized and remembered one of its literary sons. This marker was put up in 1999 with the attendance of the PBBY board members.

First, A Poem Must Be Magical
By Jose Garcia Villa

First, a poem must be magical,
Then musical as a seagull.
It must be a brightness moving
And hold secret a bird’s flowering
It must be slender as a bell,
And it must hold fire as well.
It must have the wisdom of bows
And it must kneel like a rose.
It must be able to hear
The luminance of dove and deer.
It must be able to hide
What it seeks, like a bride.
And over all I would like to hover
God, smiling from the poem’s cover.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

The Pride of Pasig: The Pasig City Library & Discovery Centrum

I finally had the chance of visiting the Pasig City Library and Discovery Centrum. In previous posts, I have written about the Pasig City's library and its evolution. Click the highlighted words for the photo essay. The link about the city library winning the Most Outstanding City Library of 2008 is likewise highlighted for your reading pleasure.

To share with you the discoveries I made during my visit yesterday, February 9, 2009, scroll down and begin the short tour with me.

At the entrance, I immediately saw a spacious and well lighted reading area. To my left was the multi-media room where a TV is put up for viewing purposes. The multi-media room's seating arrangement was designed like a mini-auditorium. According to the librarian-in-charge, Mrs. Delia Barreno, viewings of films, movies and the like take place on scheduled visits.

I brought my daughter, Zoe, with me that day when I visited the new city library. Taught in school how to behave in the library, she was quiet but very attentive.

Here she stands behind the mock kitchen. There is a play room, a make-believe area for younger children who prefer exploring and manipulating toys and the simulated world of grown ups. Apart from a kitchen, a garage is available for those who would like to tinker with cars and automobiles. At the center of the play area, a circular table with building blocks is open for children's use.

Indeed, the Pasig City Library has come a along way since the time of Madame Pilar Perez. It is very different from the library I used to visit as a grade school student of Pateros Catholic School. That was back in the 80's when silence and soft movements were the observed decorum in libraries. Today, as in most modern libraries, functional noise and interactivity are the accepted trends and norms.

So I was not surprised to see a group of students from the nearby Pasig City Elementary School reading aloud to younger kids. There were two of them holding a big book - Si Kas ang Barumbadong Bus, by Rene Villanueva. I could not help myself but volunteer to tell stories this coming summer.

Ms. Delia was delighted. She told me that the students who volunteered to tell stories were her regular patrons. She had actually set up tasks for them to do. True enough, they kept books in place and arranged the small chairs and tables after the storytelling session. They even helped the library staff in shelving the books used by the younger children.

Quite noticeable were the Pinocchio dolls on the shelves. These reading Pinocchio dolls were donated by the city mayor, Bobby Eusebio and his wife, both architects by profession who had their hands on the plan and the design of the new city library.

Ms. Delia shared with me so many stories of how "their" library grew; her day to day adventures as children's librarian; and the activities they do for the children. But that would be for the next posts. I will reserve the best stories for last, of course.

On our way out, Ms. Delia escorted us to where Zoe left her bag. A pigeon hole for bags of students and children is set outside.

Here you see my daughter, Zoe getting her bag at the end of our visit to the Pasig City Library and Discovery Centrum. She met new friends, Ms. Delia was one of them and a girl named Mailin who is in 5th grade. A library is growing in Pasig City and along with it is the possibility to hope that Pasig City's youth can develop a love for books and reading.

Monday, February 9, 2009

PAASCU Work In Malolos, Bulacan

I was out again for accreditation work at the Holy Spirit Academy of Malolos, Bulacan (HSAM) last February 5-6, 2008. It's my tenth accreditation visit since 2004 so by next year, I'll be joining the PAASCU annual assembly.

Here is a photo of the accrediting team that went to HSAM. L-R - Yours truly; Ms. Analiza Salaya of St. Mary's Academy, Caloocan; Dr. Rosalie Trongco of St. Mary's Academy, Manila; Sis Tessie Babaran, SFIC of St. Joseph's College, Balanga, Bataan; Sis Corazon SSpS of HSAM; Mrs. Emelina Mesa of St. Therese's College; Mrs. Angie Paderanga of Sta. Catalina College, Manila. Standing behind is Alex Gesmundo, the PAASCU representative who gave us all valuable assistance during the two day visit.

PAASCU visits and meetings can be long and tedious. The deliberation would take hours, but with Sis Tessie Babaran, we finished just in time to get back home to Manila before the rush hour. Needless to say, it was a thorough and efficient PAASCU work.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

The Google Book Search Agreement*

*For Sarah, who suggested I look up on the agreement because some users in Scribd apparently, are led to a violation of copyright.

More on this matter in the next blogging days. For the meantime, read the links. It's both helpful and relevant for us, readers and users of online resources.

Call For Papers: 2nd National Conference on Children's Literature

Panawagan Para sa mga Papel sa Ikalawang Pambansang Kumperensiya sa Panitikang Pambata

Iniimbitahan ng Pilandokan (National Research Society for Children’s Literature) ang mga mananaliksik, manunulat, mag-aaral, at iskolar na lumahok sa Ikalawang Pambansang Kumperensiya sa Panitikang Pambata na natakdang isagawa sa Hulyo 16-18, 2009.

May temang “Ang Panitikang Pambata sa Edukasyon” ang kumperensiya sa taguyod ng National Commission for Culture and the Arts.

Inaanyayahan ang lahat na magpadala ng abstrak ng isinasagawang pananaliksik o pag-aaral kaugnay ng mga sumusunod na paksa:

1. kultura ng pagkabata at kabataang Filipino
2. ang batang Filipino sa panitikan, panitikang pambata, at panitikang likha ng bata
3. ang batang Filipino at ang mga panlipunang usapin
4. ang batang Filipino sa industriya ng kultura
5. ang sitwasyon ng panitikang pambata sa Pilipinas

Tatanggapin ng komite ang naturang abstrak bago o sa ika-6 ng Marso, 2009. Aabisuhan ang mga mapipiling aplikante sa ika-20 ng Marso, 2009.

Nararapat na linawin ng abstrak ang isasagawang proyekto, ang tekstong susuriin, at ang gagamiting framework sa pagsusuri. Pipiliin ang mga abstrak na may bagong kontribusyon sa pag-aaral ng panitikang pambata at kultura ng bata sa Pilipinas.

Mangyaring ilakip ang inyong pangalan, institusyong kinabibilangan, maikling tala sa sarili, email address, at iba pang impormasyon.
Ang mga mapipiling aplikante ay nararapat isumite ang kanilang buong papel sa ika-9 ng Mayo, 2009.

Isumite ang mga abstrak kina Dr. Rosario Torres-Yu (Founding President), Dr.. Eugene Y. Evasco (Conference Director), at Prop. Will P. Ortiz (Conference Co-Director) sa email na ito:

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Steph and Stevie

This is juicy. Stephen King blatantly expressed his thoughts on Stephenie Meyer's writing craft. I wonder how the later took it. With a grain of salt, I hope.
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