Westerville South High School Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011
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Our school year began with us running, literally, from classroom to classroom helping teachers set up their new SmartBoards. The WSHS Media Center is the “go to” place to find answers to questions, and we were fielding calls immediately about using the new equipment. The thing I love about this profession is that there are always new things to learn and challenges to be met in support of teachers and students, and the time between learning the new program/process and implementing it is usually very short. Not knowing what surprises and challenges each day is going to bring is my favorite part of the job.
1. Increase direct collaboration with teachers. 2. Increase communication with staff, administration, and community members. 3. Continue professional development in areas of library administration, technology, and teaching.
Highlights: 1. Recipient of the 2009-‐2010 Educator of the Year award (forgot to put that in last year’s annual report). 2. Attended the OELMA conference in October; OCC Librarians meetings; 3. Attended mid-‐winter OELMA workshop to learn to meld AASL standards with P21 standards. 4. Presented P21 building-‐level early-‐release session. 5. Presented sessions for media specialists and teachers on both Waiver Days. 6. Collaborated with a library science graduate student as she completed a project for one of her classes. 7. Purchased books that the kids really wanted to read!!!
Class Visits and Usage Patterns: We continued to have very strong usage of the media center facilities which speaks highly of how teachers view the importance of collaboration. All content areas now have access to their own computer labs, but teachers regularly bring their students to the media center to start research projects that are then finished in the other labs. Class visits increased from 623 to 724. I had been concerned that with the retirement of one of our social studies teachers that our numbers might go down somewhat, but other teachers easily filled that gap. In addition, we had fewer meetings held in the media center during instructional time this year allowing more classes to take advantage of the space. We had a total of 59,323 visitors including students in classes, study halls, before and after school, and during lunch. 2
WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011
World Languages 4%
Subject Area Visits: Business: 10 Social Studies English: 370 21% English Health/PE: 18 Science 51% IB: 61 11% Science: 82 IB Social Studies: 152 8% Supplemental: 6 World Languages: 25 Total Classes: 724 Health/PE 3% We have a steady stream of student visitors from the time we open our doors at 7:00 a.m. until we close at 3:15 p.m. We made a distinct effort this year to count the number of students who come into the media center before the first bell rings. Our total came to 10603, which is an average of 60.9 students every day. The computer area is usually full while other students are studying at tables or visiting together. This year we had approximately 34181 individual visitors during study halls, lunch, from classes, and before and after school.
Reading is Fundamental:
The increase in individual visits and the number of new fiction books on the shelves is reflected in the number of materials checked out during the year. This year we checked out 7616 materials to students and staff which is an increase of 2458 (47.6%) over last year. Although we were much more diligent about tracking in-‐ house use of magazines and books (a 76% increase), we still had a significant increase in the number of materials taken out of the media center. Our rate of fiction checked out increased from 1596 books last year to 2632 this year. I have many students who now make book suggestions and I try to fill those as much as possible. Our 9th and 10th grade Our Borrowers students continue to be our predominant borrowers. I 9th Faculty attribute that to most of 23% 28% them being too young to hold jobs, therefore they 10th 12th have more time to indulge in 22% 11th 14% pleasure reading. 13% WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011 3
I have made a concerted effort in the past few years to purchase books for pleasure reading. Databases and the Internet have changed how students perform research, so I’m less inclined to purchase non-‐fiction unless I know a teacher is going to want it. We constantly change our displays of new materials and try to have multiple copies of popular titles. Our most popular non-‐ required reading fiction titles this year were I am Number Four, Hunger Games series, Pretty Little Liars series. Our students have enjoyed having some comfortable chairs in “Wildcat Red” to relax in during study hall. They’ve proven so popular that I’m adding two more over the summer. Some students and several teachers do take advantage of the “hold” function in Destiny to request materials to be pulled for them. I plan to promote this function more heavily in the next school year, especially for teachers so they feel they have more ownership in the system.
Mrs. King, Thank you so much for all of your help over the last 12 weeks! Without you I probably would have spent hours in the library looking for things! I also really appreciated all your help with the argumentative essays! I would have been lost without you! Sincerely, Lindsey Triplett
Databases It is a great help to all three high schools to have the district continuing to purchase subscriptions to Opposing Viewpoints in Context, Student Resource Center in Context, Noodletools, and Turn It In. At South, we also have purchased some eBooks through Gale which users access through the Gale Virtual Reference Library portal. In addition, the district purchases a subscription to Questia for our IB and AP students. Statistics this year show a severe drop off in the use of Opposing Viewpoints and Student Resource Center. I was surprised at the much lower usage of Opposing Viewpoints since the majority of 10th English/Language Arts students are required to use it for their argumentative essays. During this time, however, I did have students using another vendor’s product on a trial basis, so I’m sure that did have some impact on the numbers. Noodletools is relied upon by students in all grade levels to take research notes and create bibliographies for their research papers. Students make use of the assignment dropbox to share their work with me so I can give them quick feedback on their bibliographies and notes. Since assignments can now be shared with more than one instructor, both the classroom teacher and I can view their progress and comment. This allows the students to make corrections as they research and uses less paper since their notes are available electronically. The note taking feature allows students to group and regroup notes into logical order. They can capture 4
WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011
original quotes, paraphrase what they are reading, and add questions they might need to pursue further. This helps them think through the organization of their papers before they begin their writing. Each year more teachers ask me to assess student work in collaboration with them. Students are gaining an understanding that they must be ethical researchers across the curriculum. The chart below shows usage for all three high schools for the 2010-‐2011 school year. Last year 5655 bibliographies were created. This year 6822 were created. We are definitely getting our money’s worth out of this product.
Noodletools -‐ WCS 2010-‐11 1200 1000 800
IB and AP History and English students are all given access to Questia. This database was taken over last year by a new vendor. They indicate they have plans to make it a more robust product. It does provide students with access to books, magazines, journals, and newspapers that some of our other databases do not, and we are going to use it for at least one more year. However, I plan to do more in-‐depth instruction with these students in the use of both Questia and EBSCO databases that come to us through INFOhio. Then I’ll be polling these students in February to determine if we should continue to purchase Questia.
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Wikispaces The WSHS Media Center wikispaces page is the portal we use to access online information. Since June 2009, the page has received almost 78,000 hits. Teachers can (and do) view the media center calendar at the bottom of the page to see if there are available time slots open. They like the efficiency of checking this way and have commented that they wish all the labs had a similar calendar. Students like the fact that everything is in one place and they don’t have to remember/bookmark different web addresses. If their teacher has his/her own website, the media center has a link to it. Wordpress In the spring, the three high school media specialists collaborated on a website to provide a gateway for all our students to access our resources. Links to this page have been added to the homepages of all three high schools at the district level. This site, created using Wordpress, gives our students centralized access to all our databases along with pathfinders, book suggestions, and other quality websites to aid them with their research. The media center websites provide a great amount of detail about the curriculum and how technology is being incorporated into daily lessons. When we were looking for our home before our move to Ohio, I checked school websites WCS Media Centers for information about the media centers. If a school didn’t have website. media center web page, we crossed it off our list. Statistics show that schools with vibrant media centers have higher test scores, and Westerville is proof of that. LibGuides 6
WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011
Two media specialists that I, among others, regard as trendsetters in our field started using a product called LibGuides to create pathfinders for their students. A LibGuide is a multi-‐media website that allows a media specialist or teacher to pull together a variety of resources for students to use. These resources might include websites, videos, podcasts, spreadsheets or text documents, links to eBooks and blogs. Basically, if a resource can be digitized, it can be added to a LibGuide. It’s very visual which helps students who are not text-‐oriented. Guides are meant to be shared, so if someone at another school creates a page that I Debbie, want to use, I can link to it instead of creating one myself. LibGuides allow for easy organization of resources. I requested Thanks for all of the a trial of LibGuides in February and liked it so much that I help with my tech subscribed to it for the remainder of the school year. My issues last year. guides are still rather rudimentary, but I anticipate improving Without you and them during the next school year. Karen, I could not have done half of Google Docs what I was trying to do. I have begun using Google Docs as often as possible to store information and have been encouraging students and teachers Thanks again, to do so as well. There are many times I want to work on a project I started at school when I get home. Using Google Docs Tyler (Winner) saves me time and effort since I no longer need to download Math teacher the project to a flash drive and then remember to bring it with me. Google Docs provides teachers and students the ability to share work in real time. Teachers can make comments on student drafts that the students can then incorporate into their final projects. This opportunity provides students to learn from their mistakes and fix them before grades are assigned. They learn much more from this approach than by simply getting a marked-‐up paper back which they then forget about. I use Google Docs to create anticipation guides, exit surveys, and gather input about book and magazine purchases. I will be urging students to create accounts.
The addition of SmartBoards in most of the core curriculum classes has allowed teachers incorporate technology even more seamlessly into their classes. Teachers were excited to find them in their rooms last August, and once we got them all set up properly, they were in constant use. Because so many classrooms now had permanent projectors, we were able to loan portable projectors to every teacher that wanted one. Teachers did find that the speakers on their computers often were not loud enough to project sound throughout the classroom, so I created instructions on how to install external speakers to work with the mounted projectors. WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011 7
Dear Debbie, Televisions were still circulated frequently as were boomboxes. We had several requests for a Blu-‐ray It is with sincere thanks that player which I will purchase at the beginning of the next I write this note. Without school year. you last week, it would have been very difficult for me to A big hit this year was the addition of several Flip video help my students with their cameras to the collection. As soon as it was known that internal assessments. I we had them in stock, teachers started creating always feel you could get assignments requiring their use. The kids really enjoyed real frustrated with the making video projects. It did require I learn how to use tedious things that the FlipShare and MovieMaker very quickly. We now have Psych IA requires. Your 22 cameras available for students which should allow effort for these students is for multiple class projects at one time. above and beyond the call of duty. Along with the Flip cameras, we purchased headsets with attached microphones and some stand-‐alone Thank you so much, computer microphones. These were quickly checked Nancy Haynam out by teachers as well for students to use making Voice Thread and Blabberize projects. Our computers are holding up rather well. We just ended our third year with them. We had several incidents of students deleting major portions of the student drive, as we do every year, but this problem should go away next year when they each have their own logon. Teachers do wish, occasionally, that we still had mobile computer carts. It would be nice to have more computers available, but our laptops in the past did not hold up well under student use, so I would not be overly excited about having them again. Several teachers made use of our long-‐distance video equipment. Our anatomy classes were able to stay at South to watch knee-‐replacement surgery and an autopsy. It is a tremendous collaborative tool that I hope more teachers will take advantage of in the future.
Most of us at the secondary level are considering adding eReaders in some format to our collections. Currently students can check out eBooks through the Ohio eBook Project. Karen Yingling has been instrumental in creating instructions for us to download the books. Other schools in the area are adding Kindles and Nooks for circulation, and we hope to do this as well. We will need to have Acceptable/Responsible Use policies and purchasing policies in place before we proceed, but it is hoped that we can have eReaders in the media centers before winter break, if not sooner. 8
WSHS Media Center Annual Report 2010-‐2011
Kids are always teaching us something new in the media center. One library has a “Library Hero” board at the front of their room. Each day a different student who has made a contribution to learning is featured. I think that would be fun thing to do at South. I will continue to promote the media center as a 24/7 place of learning. With our wikipage, students have access to quality information whenever they need it. In order to continue to guide students and teachers to quality information, I am going to strongly urge that all our patrons sign up for library cards through the Westerville Public and Columbus Metropolitan libraries. These library systems have a wealth of databases our users can tap into, so I want to make sure that everyone is aware of the information awaiting them. The purpose of a library media specialist is to empower learners to move beyond what they thought it possible for them to do. I plan to evaluate my program next year using the guidelines from Empowering Learners: Guidelines for School Library Programs. I intend to be guided by these three essential sets of questions as I collaborate with students and teachers: 1. What did they (your patrons or those you serve) learn through your library program and the conversations for learning you facilitated? What do you hope they will learn in 2012? 2. How do we know what they learned? What tools did you use for assessment? Did the patrons engage in metacognition and self-‐reflection on what they learned? 3. How are you privileging and honoring what they learned? Where are their stories of learning shared in your physical and virtual library spaces?1 I look forward to serving the community at Westerville South in the upcoming year and making the Media Center an even better place to be.
1 Hamilton, Buffy. “The Unquiet Library Annual Report 2011, Part 1”.
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Highlights of the 2010-2011 year in the WSHS Media Center.