Untangling the World of Books, Technology, and Instruction

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Connections

Image Retrieved lemonlemonade.wordpress.com
Last Wednesday, I was home with one of my kiddos after an episode of the flu combined with the after effects of some extensive dental work. I was able to catch a Wired Wednesday webinar with the Daring Librarian herself, Gywneth Jones. It was an awesome hour of animation tools and great ideas.  I was so glad I checked Twitter and caught Shannon Miller's tweet.  Later, I was tinkering on Tweetdeck while waiting for my bizillionth load of laundry to dry and I got caught up in a new teacher chat from Edutopia. (#ntchat) There were a bunch of different chats going on and I jumped in on a few and had so much fun.  There was some laughter (Help! I'm buried under 127 sticky notes) and some great ideas.

Afterwards, I realized that although I don't have a formal mentor in my district and  have only connected with one other librarian in my area, the connections that I have made through Twitter have really been a blessing during this first year as a teacher/librarian.  Following the "Greats" and the TL GeekTribe have provided me with some great ideas and direction that I wouldn't have found anywhere else.  God Bless those crazy librarians! I also realized that my struggles are not unique to me - and others around the country are having the same frustrations with collaboration and technology integration.  I hope my insights where helpful and supportive to the teachers who were expressing their frustration and I am so grateful for the ideas that I took from that chat.

So as far as mentoring goes - a formal mentor program in a school district is a great idea - in fact, next year, sign me up for the newbies.  I am the only media specialist, but having someone to rely on to ask the mundane questions (like what time do we report?) goes a long way toward establishing some connections and easing some of the stress of a new district. If that's not available, get on Twitter and find some movers and shakers in your content area and start following them.  No one is an island.




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