There are three ways I have begun to improve our presence on the Internet. I have been working on a Read alikes wiki for our library this week and you can find it here: http://mexicoreadalikes.wikispaces.com/
I have made this a members only wiki, I hope, but it is public for everyone else to see.
I have a blog called Teen Scene and I am trying to make the effort to post reviews on it. I may not just review brand new books as I think that I can go back and read books within the last few years that I may have overlooked to try to breathe new life and readership into them. For example, I just read Nancy Farmer’s House of Scorpions and I will be reviewing it as soon as I complete The Lord of Opium. The book is fascinating as it examines a futuristic world ruled by drug lords. Mexico and points south of our border has been divided into countries named for the drug that they produce and export. In this case, the story is mostly set in Opium, run by El Patron and our narrator is Matt, his clone. There are so many facets to this sci-fi futuristic story – it would be an excellent read alike to The Hunger Games, but I think it has been forgotten in a deluge of publishing for young adults. My review will run in Teen Scene and I’m going to try to go back through our collection and find more gems. This book, in particular, was a big award winner, so it really wasn’t passed over by the critics. Nevertheless, I never read it. I know there are books that we are not giving enough attention to and I really want to find these hidden gems and get kids reading them. I can imagine that there are many books that do not achieve best seller status that are still excellent books, but there are so many choices that we never find them and make them best sellers! I also really want to focus on getting back into Net Galley where I can read books before they are published, try to review them and make predictions on future trends in reading for my staff and students. We will see if I achieve these goals, but I do plan on attempting to make the effort.
We also have a Facebook page for our library, but this is mostly to share events that have already happened. The problem with the page is that teens are not as interested in this platform as they used to be and I am considering having a group of teens create and edit a Tumblr for our library over the summer and into next year. We will see if I am able to do so….
Are you a fan of The Big Bang Theory who can’t get enough of the socially awkward Sheldon Cooper? A lover of the underdog? Can’t get enough of the romantic comedy where the wallflower comes out of his shadow and gets down to boogie at the high school dance? Know what it’s like to be different from everyone else? Longing for a slice of humor in a world full of problems?
If you you are saying “yes” to any of these questions, then you should definitely check out The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion. Professor Don Tillman, our protagonist and narrator, leads us through the trials and tribulations of finding love while dealing with one’s own quirks. I don’t want to say that Don is on the spectrum, although he feels he may be, but that he is a unique individual who has precise methods of organization that allow him to live his life in a more efficient way. Using scientific theory and formulating a questionnaire that appeals to his “ideal” partner, Don seeks out someone to share his best life with.
I could see where a reader might be offended by characterizing Don as being “on the spectrum” or having Asperger’s, so I won’t do that, but I will say that it is fair to start the dialogue on being different and unique and that treating it in a lighthearted way seems to me to be an excellent route to further understanding each other – rather than decry the depiction, perhaps it is acceptable to enjoy some humor in the situation and to use the novel as a starting point to further research and empathy with those who are on the spectrum.
In any event, Don is no different from any other man in his quest for love and you will find yourself admiring his courage, brilliance and giggling with delight at his hidden talents as he pursues the perfect wife.
Rosie, mentioned in the title, fails to answer the questions correctly, but Don is drawn to her and wants to help her find her father. While assisting her with this task, he finds himself beginning to live a very different life and he is not sure how to deal with it.
The film rights to this novel have already been sold and you will find yourself trying to cast the film by the end of the book. Let’s just say I’m rooting for Ewan McGregor as Don Tillman and I’d like to see Liam Neeson cast as one of the characters as well. Emma Stone could definitely pull off Rosie. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that they do not ruin my vision.
Thing 13: Media Skills – My Pinterest Page
For Thing 13, I’m working out some ideas on my Pinterest board that I could use in a library setting. I would like to make a Library Pinterest board for my students. I think I can use my other email account and create a Pinterest board that way? I’m wondering if anyone in our Cool Tools community has made a Tumblr or Pinterest board that the kids can access?
Here is my Pinterest. You can see that some of the boards and pins would be great to get YA to access to suggest books, author and other ideas.
So, I am patiently waiting for my Track 2 assignment. I have some time on my hands right now for some professional development and I was feeling unproductive. I went to Track 1 to see if there was anything I could do to get motivated and I decided it was time to give Tumblr a try again. I’m working on it. It is so weird because the dashboard is this very minimalist screen and then when you actually go to your Tumblr – there are these free themes and your dashboard posts can be completely transformed into a whole new look. I’m very new to it, so please feel free to give me some advice on how I can spice things up. I am going to try to focus on movies, books and eats on my Tumblr. I gave it the same title as this blog because I need to figure out how Tumblr works and then get some more original ideas.
- What tools did you use? How did they work?
- How might you use these tools with your students?
I have had some experience with Mapping and Geolocation Tools. I am always amazed by the complexity of these tools. I was introduced by Google Lit Trips by the Web 2.0 guru, Meg Ormiston, at a librarian conference I attended a few years ago. I highly recommend that everyone take a look at the lit trips that are already made and posted on the Google Lit Trip site, but I also find it extremely stressful to even think about being able to create one of my own! When would I find the time to learn it, do it and then think about how to present it to my students? I’m overwhelmed right now. Maybe I could do it as my independent professional development project over the summer – that is a paid 12 hour window that perhaps might be a solution.
Secondly, I have tried this History Pin tool. I like the idea of it, but I’m trying to teach myself how to do it and I have just used a good hour attempting to do a history pin collection or tour of Central New York Underground Railroad sites. I just uploaded a number of jpegs and I’m hoping I can figure it out. This would be a nice value-added tour to give to my United States History teachers and students. The time factor is crucial for me and I’m not really sure I’m savvy enough with this site to use it yet.
I pinned my favorite vacation spot successfully and I’m loading the suggested Ipad Apps for Virtual Field Trips! I really liked pinning my vacation spot (on a number of levels as break approaches) and this might be a good activity to give teachers as bell ringers or geography review of important places that I can do in a minute.
I really like all of the resources provided, but the time I need to learn to use them is the ONLY problem.
I really like the list of I Pad apps. I visited Geoguessr and this might be a nice game for geography students. These are things that I can put into use almost right away as they are what I call “click and point” tools.
QR Codes and I get along just fine. Again, I just need time to develop something cool.
History Pin is really using some of my time today. I’m trying, but did anyone else find it clunky to use?
I’m going to go visit the Pinterest mobile games and the last links soon. Maybe I’ll post again, but I’m glad that I was able to get into my Cool Tools curriculum and projects. I really love this class and it offers me SO much information and knowledge that I can put to practical use. I really recommend this class to every educator in the world. Polly-Alida Farrington is doing a wonderful job – I can only imagine how much time you have invested in this course!! Wow!!
3 large onions
1/4 lb. (1 stick) unsalted butter – you can try with less, I am going to next time
3/4 lb. rotini spiral pasta
1 can or 1 bag of sauerkrat
1 4 oz can of mushroom parts with juices
1 can of Cream of Mushroom soup (she used Campbell’s)
pepper and salt sprinkled in
Directions: Cook rotini. Dice all onions. Saute onions in butter until translucent. Combine pasta with onions and all other ingredients. Mix together. Put mixture in 9 X 13 baking pan. Bake in 350 degree oven for 30-40 minutes until heated thoroughly.
Warning: May lead diners to request real pierogi.