Author visit Matt Dickinson  DSC_0040 (1)October saw the return of Matt Dickinson to our school. Matt has written the Mortal Chaos series and is currently finishing the final book in his series the Everest Files. Matt spoke with  grades 5 – 10 in a gruelling schedule in the morning of the first IICS write-in. In the afternoon, after catching his breath, he worked with some of the writers. Matt is also a documentary maker and he showed some of his documentary about an exhibition to Antarctica on the yacht the Pelagic.

IMG_1331 (2)Author visit Roxie Munro Roxie was a keynote speaker at the Children’s Media Conference held in Istanbul. She is an author and illustrator who not only publishes books but also helps to create apps based on her books. We have two of her books, Circus and Busy Builders. The teachers at Hisar have also been using her book Doors which is available in Tumblebooks. The students have been making flags for their own castles during play based learning time. Roxie also gave a talk to teachers during their lunch break. I have video tape of her sessions and she has given permission for me to create some short films about her work and the ideas she presented about play based reading. It occurred to me as I was listening to her that reading with our students can almost always be play based depending on our approach.


Buy this book please In an effort to involve our students in book purchasing decisions this Google form has been embedded in the library website I have put in purchase requests and hope to order the titles through Amazon. I am finding that with our Turkish address the postage, tax and import duties allowances are coming to the about the same as the cost of the books themselves. Last year I was using Book Depository which has no shipping fees and the tax is paid as part of the book purchase price. The drawback with using this company is that they do not issue invoices. I will chat with Icten to see how much of a problem that is them when they are audited.


Digital Citizenship week presented a great opportunity to offer lessons and raise awareness of citations and academic integrity. I spoke with grade 4M about some specific questions they had and that week while working with grade 6 on nonfiction reading skills we discussed academic integrity. The survey results offer some insights into the need to work more closely with grade 7 – 10.

Feedback to Grade 7 Historical Narrative unit Both Tina and Jacob invited me to work with their students on interview skills and research using Destiny, EBSCO and Encyclopedia Britannica. Tina shared the end results of her unit and I was able to analyse the bibliographies. This analysis shows that the students are using Easybib as a citation tools but not understanding how to use it well. Tina and I will work together on this during their next research assignment


ATL’s and reading history through Destiny With the questionnaire and goal setting being done on Approaches to Learning in grades 7 – 10 I realised students may not know how to access their own borrowing history in Destiny. I made a screencast showing students how to do this.


Opportunities and Challenges


RED book awards We were sent multiple copies of four finalists for these awards which are run by the Falkirk Community Trust in Scotland. Some students in grade 7 have committed to reading all four books in order to vote on which one they think should be the winner. The winning book is selected by teenagers through a voting process. This has been quite a challenge as the students commit to read the books whether or not they are the kind of book they would normally read. I have created a Google community for them to comment on the books I hope we can be invloved with this again next year, all four books are worthy nominations


Wendy Gutenkauf from Follett visiting our school 9th December we are hosting Wendy. She will meet with our New Literacies team for 30 minutes to discuss how we can possibly buy digital video and have it available through Destiny. I will be talking with her about streamlining our federated search facility through Destiny. Lindsey, Ozlem and Dina are collected specific Destiny questions as well. A few years ago Wendy provided a quote for IICS to buy Textbook Manager in order to keep track of readers, equipment and so on. The good news is that Follett Corporation has combined Textbook Manager and Asset Manage into one Asset manager system. This may be a useful product for us when managing things like musical instruments, textbooks, electronic equipment and so on.


CEESA job-a-like for librarians I have been helping to organise this for the day before the CEESA conference. The theme is “The first place of personalisation – the library”. Our venue will be SALT Galata and the programme includes a Skype session with Katie Day from Singapore and discussions on Library space and the librarian’s role in personalised learning.


Quote of the month in honour of the RED book awards books: A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading. William Styron


Amanda Bond                                                                               Teacher Librarian