DUNCAN, Donna, Laura Lockhart, & Lisa Ham. The New iSearch, You Search, We All Learn to Research. 148p. (How to Do It Manuals). charts. bibliog. index. CIP. Neal-Schuman. 2011. pap. $60. ISBN 978-1-55570-758-3. LC 2011033986.
The authors make the case that through a combination of strategies, standards, research, and social media, the iSearch research process can help students develop a better understanding of the logical and important steps involved in structuring research. It can also improve writing skills, utilize an inquiry-based procedure important in solving information problems, and aid in making good decisions throughout life. Five sections guide teachers, librarians, and others assisting with classroom research projects through a step-by-step detailed method. Within each of these sections, eight chapters include 20 detailed lessons that provide a useful, scripted structure to follow and address curriculum standards, a lesson objective, necessary materials and preparation, guided practice and group work, closure, and formative assessment. Copious figures, examples, checklists, and step-by-step directions for web tools are provided. The lessons involve the use of library resources, developing skimming and scanning skills, creating higher- and lower-level questions, encouraging parental involvement, digital safety and copyright awareness, collaboration, peer-review, teacher modeling, etc. All contribute to an outstanding, effective resource. A companion website provides access to various examples of using a wiki, accompanying book materials, and other useful websites. Even though this title is directed toward the elementary level, occasional suggestions for minor changes and adaptations will make this information beneficial to upper-level students, too.–Susan Shaver, Hemingford Public Schools, NE
HARRINGTON, LaDawna. Guided Research in Middle School: Mystery in the Media Center. 2nd ed. illus. by Rachael Harrington. 119p. charts. diags. bibliog. further reading. CIP. Linworth. 2011. pap. $35. ISBN 978-1-59884-860-1. LC 2011017228.
Gr 5-8–New school librarians will find value in this soup-to-nuts unit on how to teach research skills. It comes complete with lesson plans, 21st-century learning standards, scripts, and reproducible handouts. Collaborative teams of librarians and teachers will find much useful information in eight jam-packed lessons. The only remaining challenge will be finding the time to implement them. Should one like to teach using mnemonic devices, the author invented the acronym ANTHILL to help students remember the steps to research. For those who revel in puns and wordplay, she also chooses her words brilliANTly in an effort to constANTly reinforce her theme. In a chapter called “Unit Summary,” each lesson includes approximate class periods required. An organizational chart that presents the unit more visually and a blank sample for future use follow these pages. Each lesson provides an instructional plan, which includes learning objectives, strategies, modifications, and assessment suggestions. Harrington also shares 12 concise slides to adapt for visual presenting. Though the title is aimed at the middle school, the gimmicks skew to fifth or sixth graders; the elementary tone will have older students rolling their eyes. The handouts are a bit wordy and crowded–much space is devoted to making the page look like a notebook. There’s plenty to adapt, though. While this revision of the 2006 edition doesn’t stand out in a crowded field, it will have appeal if the style fits.–Brenda Kahn, Tenakill Middle School, Closter, NJ
KALEN, Elizabeth F. S. Mostly Manga: A Genre Guide to Popular Manga, Manhwa, Manhua, and Anime. 164p. (Genreflecting Advisory Series). appendix. further reading. index. Libraries Unlimited. 2012. PLB $55. ISBN 978-1-59884-938-7. LC 2011028456.
Offering annotated lists of titles for teens and adults, this guide’s first four chapters focus on the formats’ main demographics, which are Shonen, Shojo, Seinen, and Josei. Each demographic is subdivided into genres such as action, horror, and romance. Annotations include ratings ranging from “all ages” to “mature,” as well as a related anime or manga. Shorter chapters on Korean and Chinese comics, known respectively as manhwa and manhua, follow. The guide concludes with author, title, subject and genre indexes. Clear, succinct writing and thoughtful organization make this an extremely useful source for readers’ advisory and collection development as well as a solid introduction to the wide range of manga and anime genres and audiences.–Lisa Goldstein, Brooklyn Public Library, NY
KARP, Jesse. Graphic Novels in Your School Library. illus. by Rush Kress. 146p. bibliog. further reading. index. CIP. ALA. 2012. pap. $50. ISBN 978-0-8389-1089-4. LC 2011026353.
What? Another book about graphic novels in the library media center? This title might not touch on a new topic for seasoned librarians, but the content is still relevant. Karp opens with an overview of graphic novels and their history, explains what they are and are not, how they work, and their value to students. He discusses understanding sequential art and story construction and art as a visual language, and suggests discussion and essay topics. He only touches on manga, focusing primarily on American or Western comics. The book is rounded out with an annotated list, divided by grade levels and lesson plans. This book updates some of the classic professional titles that are still useful but that don’t include many of the newer titles. A worthwhile addition.–Esther Keller, I.S. 278, Marine Park, NY
KLOR, Ellin & Sarah Lapin. Serving Teen Parents: From Literacy to Life Skills. 198p. (Professional Guide for Young Adult Librarians Series). diags. photos. appendix. bibliog. index. Web sites. CIP. Libraries Unlimited. 2011. pap. $45. ISBN 978-1-59884-693-5; spiral $45. ISBN 978-1-59884-694-2. LC 2011010670.
Often ostracized or forgotten, teen parents need their library and librarian more than ever. This book gives excellent suggestions for serving this very important library demographic, including the “whys” as well as the “hows.” Libraries can offer programs for teens and for babies–and often a combination of the two. Other programs relate to literacy and life skills. From chapters on understanding teen parents in general to offering information on how to communicate as well as great program plans and real-life examples from libraries from across the country, this volume is an all-around awesome addition to any teen librarian’s professional bookshelf. Even those who have already established support programs or groups for these patrons could learn a thing or two. Program templates, song sheets, and other resources are included, and lists of websites and other references appear throughout. This book will definitely get librarians excited about working with teen parents and their babies.–Traci Glass, Eugene Public Library, OR