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Beccablog has moved to beccablog.bvswlmc.com. Please update your readers.
Sorry for the inconvenience.
Well, Edublogs seems to be changing their offerings for free users of edublogs. I have been an edublogs user since 2006, so I am especially disappointed. I now need to find a new blog provider that provides great features for a free user.
Any ideas of a better blog provider? I am leaning toward WordPress or Blogger.
For most of the year, I thought I would have time to do this for my current school. Unfortunately, it didn’t happen. However, the other day I started on it again – for the new school. It took some time, but I think I got it to work. It isn’t pretty or flashy yet, but it is a start to getting our website mobile.
Resources I used:
For more links to other resources, click here.
If you would like a copy of the code I used on the site, send me an email and I can send to you or grab the code off my site. If you do not read html and other fancy code stuff, don’t worry – send me an email and I can show you how to code it for your library. It sounds like it could be very complicated – but of all the code type things I have done, this is one of the easiest.
Now, once I code my site to fit for the iPhone, I then need to set it up so it can be “app-like”. * Since I don’t want to pay $99 a year to Apple or hire a site to make it an app, it won’t be available on iTunes (unless I figure out another way… if so, I will blog later.) So a user does this —
1. Go to Safari on iPhone or iTouch. Type in the URL (http://www.bvswlmc.com/ilibrary.html)
2. Once the page appears, click the + .
3. Choose Add to Home Screen.
4. New page pops up to Add to Home. Title default (from your code above – you name it, but the user can change it.)
Notice the image on the left of the Title – it is either a snapshot of your site or HOPEFULLY it is an image/logo that you created. (This is determined in your code above for your site.) *
5. Click ADD.
It will then be added to the screen of the iPhone/iTouch. When a user clicks on the image, your site will launch with an opening screen of your image/logo.
(I plan on making a video to show users how to do this. I have a feeling the students will pick this up pretty quickly.)
*Troubleshooting and other interesting info
1. It can be expensive to create an app so it is placed in iTunes. Gale did a great job with their app and it is available in iTunes. I wanted to go this route with the library app, but at this time, I couldn’t justify the expense. In addition, I would need to learn some crazy codes. I don’t want Gale to be the only database students can grab information though. (THANK YOU GALE for creating the app – hopefully more databases will follow.) Libguides also has a mobile feature. (Viewing these sites from a non-mobile device can make them seem very boring – but try it on an iPhone or iTouch.) Now as I dive more into this, I am realizing there are many way to do this that are not as expensive. So there may be more information to follow at a later time.
2. While making the app, I notice that my logo did not appear when I tried to “re-put” it on my iTouch. It worked the first time with the site, but the next time, it just showed me the website as the logo – not my cool logo. So I change the website URL and put it in my iTouch – it then showed the correct logo. Moral of the story: Don’t freak out if your logo doesn’t appear the second time you install it on your phone/touch – for users it will show up (I think).
3. Text doesn’t show up on the computer browser. However, it works on my touch. I will play with the coding so it does show up.
Be looking for my current school’s app soon – I promised I would do one before I leave…
For the new school, I have been ordering books since last July/August. AND I am not done yet! We did not do a start up collection provided by a vendor. Often, they give you books they don’t want in their system anymore and things we don’t necessarily need.
This process has been very different than when I helped open the current building I am in nine years ago. So much is available electronically now. ABC-Clio, Gale, Follett – they all provide ebooks. I love this, but I this is new territory for me. How much of the collection will be in ebook format? I am not sure yet – I am looking at more of need/use rather than the format. How will it work when students are doing research? This I don’t exactly know yet either.
Also, I rely heavily on our online databases to fill in gaps especially in science. While that works for this year, what will my ‘real’ budget be next year? Can we continue to fill the gaps with online databases that require a yearly fee? Should I purchase (science) books just in case the money runs out knowing that in a few years I will need to replace those books?
I have enjoyed selecting books that I think our students will enjoy – especially the new books. Using SLJ, VOYA, and other journals, I have been able to order reviewed books. However, I have branched out now into blog world getting some good reviews and promotional information from publishers. For example, Harper Love Fest blog promotes a variety of books.
Fiction will not be available in ebook format (yet). I would like to be able to find a way that we can circulate fiction in ebook format – but with the variety of readers out there and no clear solution on how we can circulate any or all formats. So we can wait. Hopefully, we are not waiting too long.
Sidenote: Library shelving will be installed around June 1. Look for pictures of the process posted in the next couple of weeks.
When we opened West nine years ago, I remember creating a website at the beginning of the school year. It was very basic, blah, and wasn’t really ready to go until a month into the school year. In the wayback machine, I found the oldest archive of the site over a year later. Much improved, but still very blah.
Years later, I am opening a new building and one of the first things on my super long list – the web page. I do the school web page for the new building and the school site has over 56,000 hits; I posted on SW Libguides links to naming the school alma mater, yearbook, store, and newspaper – it has over 400 hits in two weeks. There is excitement for opening the new building and I want the library to be a part of that excitement.
So I have the front page done along with creating accounts for the many 2.0 sites it links. I am thinking of creating a survey to provide feedback. I really won’t know how ‘well’ the site works until we get students in the building using the site. I am sure many things will change.
Which brings me back to … I can’t wait to have a colleague in the library to share the nervousness and excitement of opening this building. I have been so lucky to have a great partner in the library at West – so I know how valuable it can be to have someone share ideas and work through the many obstacles and triumphs.
Check out the page so far… http://www.bvswlmc.com
I’m going to create a survey right now to get feedback. Check back for that – any input would be appreciated!
Here is the library logo (for the new library – Southwest). I purchased the tree on istockphoto and then a talented friend of mine (soon to be a graphic designer – although this shows she is already) was able to make it specific to Southwest. I had to enlarge the library for web, but for print “the” and “library” will be much closer together.
I am not really good at the marketing and design of things – but this is a great start. I have visions of using the ‘tree’ in the physical library as well as on the web.
I recently read Joyce Valenza’s post about library website for high school. She showed many examples of high school library web pages that display 2.0 tools and other ways to interact with students. While I love the ideas presented, I fear that by adding a high volume of things to a small space on the page we are losing some design aspect and losing our students in the mix.
I do not claim to be a great web designer – I am self taught using the many tutorials available online. Through the years, I have redesigned our site many times and now have the opportunity to design a new library site with opening the new high school.
I have reviewed the Google Eye-Scan test of websites and other documents (see below) to gather information about how to best have a user find information. Although I still feel like I don’t know exactly what I am doing, I have used the information for designing our sites.
That is why I love the libguides site – clean and organized approach to 2.0 tools specific, customized to an assignment. I use our main page to be much more general while the libguides is customized to the assignment.
I do believe in making a site interactive and including 2.0 tools. I just believe that we should be intentional about the placement and design of such tools on the site.
Web Design Principles (Slideshare)
1. Opening a new building. New furniture, new books, new – everything.
2. You won’t be the only new person!
3. You love kids and enjoy the school atmosphere.
4. You love to integrate technology and show others how to as well.
5. You love to try new things. (You aren’t freaked out that the library fiction shelves are organized by genre.)
6. You stay up on all the blogs, Twitter, and other 2.0 tools out there and want to integrate effectively into lessons.
7. Believe administrative support is essential to a good library serving students. (Our administrators are awesome!)
8. Green – not only is the school color green, but the library furniture is ‘green’ as well.
9. You believe you impact student achievement and figure out ways you can do/show this.
10. You understand that sometimes you might have to do crazy – ‘this isn’t in my job description’ things. (Running up to a room to help with technology, set up a projector and speakers for FCA or other clubs – you know, this list could continue…)
11. You have a teaching degree and a master’s in library science.
12. You enjoy working with a great staff – and we have a great staff!!!
I am sure I missed a few things and might add more later…
Any of these things work for you? Apply now https://jobs.bluevalleyk12.org/ . Feel free to send me an email if you have any questions…
I like wikis. It used to be love, but it is now more of a like situation. I use them, but not as much as in the past. Google docs has taken over that collaborative need in many ways. Our students have email accounts with Gmail and have access now to Google docs. I seem to like those much better for the collaborative aspect.
However, wikis have been a great management tool to post student project links and great for student projects in setting up their own web pages.
Examples of wikis used with classes and/or teachers (using wikispaces):
Public Domain Links http://bvwpublicdomain.wikispaces.com/ (I set this up a long time ago and continue to add to it.)
Power2Publish http://power2publish.wikispaces.com/ (Used this for a presentation – rather than a typical powerpoint.)
(Post student projects.)
Africa Trunk Wiki http://africastudiesbl1.wikispaces.com/ (Students created a ‘wikipedia’ of an Africa Trunk of Treasures. )
Assessment for Learning (AFL) Professional Development class http://afltech.wikispaces.com/ (Posted links for our training with teachers.)