Does Activism require Power?

One of my most popular blog posts was “Advocacy is not enough we need power” and I still stand by that. Ironically enough in my new role I am teacher librarian slash Edtech integrator, and I like to joke with my colleagues who need anything from data to access to fixing an issue to equipment that “I have the power”. But some stuff fluttering around … Continue reading Does Activism require Power?

Facts getting in the way of a good story

It’s been a while – quite a stressful last few weeks of term – make that a stressful first half of the year. And now the last day of the vacation. Here’s a somewhat lighter post on two movies we saw that I’d like to comment on. The first was Bohemian Rhapsody. The whole family is a fan of Queen, and given that Freddy Mercury … Continue reading Facts getting in the way of a good story

What research looks like

Lest I be accused of being too negative on the information literacy side of things I wanted to post something positive. A while back I was listening to an interesting enough book, (Gup, 2014) but the most fascinating part, and what sent me back to the eBook version was the part where the author explained how he’d conducted his research. Now we often use mentor … Continue reading What research looks like

Are we teaching dogs to chase cars?

I’d love a dollar for every time as a TL I’m asked to teach students “how to search” or “search terms” or “searching. Once upon a time I complied. I’ve become a bit more bolshie in my old age. I now try to engage. Engage in a conversation as to what exactly the teaching and learning aim is behind the request. You see, we don’t … Continue reading Are we teaching dogs to chase cars?

Beyond beyond search and cite

A long while ago (3 years) I wrote a post about the fact that we needed to look beyond “search and cite” in teaching information literacy and look at the threshold concepts of research, and a presentation I’d given on the theme. I remember at the time seeing half the audience (of librarians) eyes glazing over and thinking, “oh no, this isn’t going to work … Continue reading Beyond beyond search and cite

Ask the inhabitants

My online library network is getting excited about a couple of articles that are challenging beliefs. There’s danah boyds’ You Think You Want Media Literacy… Do You? it is an incredibly powerful article that needs to be printed out and highlighted and read very slowly. A couple of times. One passage that struck me epitomised the near futility in what we’re trying to do on the “fake … Continue reading Ask the inhabitants

Species at risk

(Usual disclaimers – does not reflect the position at my current school but a comment on librarianship as a whole etc. etc.) I’ve been prompted to think about the library / librarian as part of an ecosystem (as opposed to the library ecosystem itself, * an important distinction) a lot recently as a result of the continued dismal reports on the state of libraries globally, … Continue reading Species at risk

The second shift

Last night my daughter asked me about citations for her Geography project. Now let it be made clear, my children, while lovely human beings, are in the “potted plant” phase of adolescence. So this was pretty rare. It’s also rare for them to acknowledge my knowledge or specialisation either.  But despite her multi-big-$$ education in a big name school (not where I’m at), and the … Continue reading The second shift

#fakenews – symptom or disease?

Last week I attended a “#Call to Action: Fake News, Misinformation and Post-Truth” held by the SMU libraries in  Singapore. Library network groups are full of requests for student appropriate examples of fake news. Most librarians have a stock list starting from the spaghetti harvest (1957) / tree octopus (1988). And we’ve unfortunately become over excited that #fakenews will be the saviour of librarianship. Because … Continue reading #fakenews – symptom or disease?

No excuses: Facebook

Continuing in my series of “no excuses” rants, I’m moving onto a biggie. Facebook. Except my rant isn’t so much against FB – everyone has done a better and more eloquent version of it in one form or another from one viewpoint or another. It’s more a rant against us librarians as consumers of FB (and yes this will be posted on FB – no … Continue reading No excuses: Facebook