David Loertscher asked me to rant about the future at this morning’s Treasure Mountain research retreat. I thought I’d share the rough version with you. (More about the retreat and AASL a little later.)
Power has been shifting in nearly every profession. In ours, it has turned head over heels.
Over the past two years the information and communication landscapes, as we once knew them, have changed We have new sources, new options.
Here’s what I believe:
• Student work can be truly authentic. It can address real problems. It can be shared.
• The notion of AUDIENCE changes the way children write. It can make them want to write.
• We can write and communicate in creative new ways.
• We can network in creative new ways.
• You can’t judge a book by its cover. The notion of what book is is shifting.
• There are probably 50 new ways to promote a book
• There are hundreds of new ways to tell a digital story. (Perhaps even more than Alan Levine recently shared.)
• Our understandings of Fair Use are archaic. We need a new code of practice. (I no longer want to be the copyright party-pooper.)
• Every librarian must know about alternate licensing, like Creative Commons. We need to make digital citizenship easier
• We need new rules for evaluating new types of information
• Evaluation decisions are not black and white—they are situational
• I believe that sometimes Wikipedia is good, very good
• Equity is more possible than ever—web-based apps and open source developments make it no longer necessary for all schools and all kids to buy expensive software.
• There are new rules for searching and pushing information.
• Equity cannot happen if librarians do not stand up to network people–if we quietly accept arbitrary blocking decisions that have nothing to do with learning. Librarians have to argue for equity in ICT tools. It’s our new intellectual freedom front.
• Intervention has to happen in new ways if it is to happen at all.
• Pathfinders can be wikified
• Students can learn to do original research—polling, interviewing, meeting experts
• Blogging makes the research process transparent and interactive and interventionary
• PowerPoint, as we know it, can kill
• The world outside of libraries doesn’t care much about databases. I don’t really know what to do about this. I love databases.
• Other people, who go to other conferences, whose names are very well-known, are redefining research, evaluation, digital citizenship, communication in ways more powerful and exciting than we are. They don’t know where we fit. I don’t know if we know where we fit.
• There are new rules: for searching, digital citizenship, evaluation, communication. We’re not making them or influencing them.
• Students deserve personal information spaces. iGoogle is beautiful. Widgets rock. We need more widgets to support the work of learners.
• The outside world is not reading OUR blogs.
Right now, in the new world of school, a world of reading coaches, tech integrators, one-to-one laptops schools, many of us are asking, “Where do we fit?”
While some of our physical libraries are shifting to libratories, too many of our colleagues continue to say “yeah but."
Because we are out west, I am thinking more like a pioneer.
If you are going to be leading you have to be at the head of wagons.
You can’t be stuck in the back pushing.
You have to climb up ahead to the summit.
You have to look around.
You have to imagine what’s ahead..You can’t lead if you are stuck in the mud
I want teacher-librarians to lead the learning wagon train
We cannot wait for the research to tell us this risk-taking, this playful authentic learning is good.
There’s no time to wait for the research.
We are giving you a challenge:
Redefine library—where and what is library?
David will divide you into areas of interest and we will build a visioning wiki.