Sunday, January 31, 2016

More sharing this year!

If one of my new year's resolutions was to procrastinate less, I think I already failed. Tomorrow is February first and I am just now posting my new year's resolution. It's a simple one: Share more.

It isn't that I have not been sharing. I have. It's just that I've been sharing elsewhere, and neglecting to cross-post, which is pretty silly considering how many tools are available to address that issue. So I guess my resolution is to link more accounts and share more.

Transform Your School Library
Last Thursday evening, I sat in on a virtual meeting with the folks at Mackin and an impressive group of administrators, tech integrators, and librarians as Mackin kicked off its TYSL (Transform Your School Library) initiative, which, I suppose, is what kicked me into finally writing this post.

So... Here's what's been going on since August.
There are lots of other new things happening, but we've focused on what's above quite a bit this fall.

Rather than re-explain all that's happened, I will share the monthly newsletters we sent to our Parent Faculty Association (PFA) this fall. In November, we started publishing these in Smore, I will embed them as separate posts below and backdate them. The newsletters are mostly compiled from the bi-weekly news updates our principal includes in his weekly updates to the learning community (including parents). Just for kicks, we made a PDF of the first semester library updates and published it using Issuu
We've been Tweeting. After a nearly two-year quiet period on Twitter, it took me a while to get back into the swing of Tweeting regularly. My personal account remains quiet, but the school library account is pretty lively at this point. We Storify our Tweets every two or three weeks to archive our record of library activity. Our Tweets auto populate our instructional portal, THE ANNEX@, as well.

We update our Flickr album ever few weeks as well. While our Flickr account is seldom visited, we keep a running slideshow on our library website. Our students nag us when we don't update the album often enough, so we're making the assumption that they like it. :)

This weekend, we opened Instagram, Tumblr, and Google+ accounts for our library. Between the app settings on Twitter, Facebook, and Buffer, I think we can get all these accounts to cross-pollenate. We'll find out in the morning when Friday's Tweets are scheduled to release - more on that in a minute. If we miss something, we'll try with IFTTT.

Our second semester began on January 21st, 2016, and we decided to start an experiment. I am not sure how long we can keep it going, but we set alarms to remind ourselves to take snapshots of the library program in action every period of the school day (and once after school). We upload those into a Comic Life 3 template we created, and this is what it looks like (mobile-friendly version):

We are calling this our Day in the Life of a Library Program project, and for now, our Tumblr account will be used exclusively for this purpose. As long as the project continues, we will hold off on posting most of our Tweets until the end of the day when we create the day's poster, then we will Tweet the images that don't make it in to the poster. We are using Buffer to release our Tweets on a schedule to avoid overwhelming our principal, Bill Egan, who re-Tweets everything with the @NCHS_CT handle.

This brings me back to the beginning of this post. In Mackin's TYSL meeting last Thursday, Randal Heise urged participants to share news of their transforming libraries publicly and frequently, so I am following Randal's advice and sharing. :)

Happy New Library Year to All!

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