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July 30, 2014

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Eight Apps to Support Early Reading and Writing | Cool Tools

Eight Apps to Support Early Reading and Writing | Cool Tools

It’s never too early to encourage reading. Richard Byrne shares his picks for tools that young readers and writers can use with or without an adult. Includes screencasts demoing three applications: Building Language for Literacy, Reading Bear, and Maily, an iOS app for letter writing.

This article was published in School Library Journal's July 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Librarians, Media React to Launch of Kindle Unlimited

Librarians, Media React to Launch of Kindle Unlimited

Describing the service as a potentially “disruptive challenge to libraries,” Jamie LaRue, principal of LaRue and Associates Consulting, told LJ that “even in rural areas now, a lot of folks have ereaders, and find that they prefer ebooks. This kind of service, at that price point, will probably result in another market shift. $9.99 is a pretty good deal.”

Generation Tablet: Kids Must Learn to Hack in the Real World

Generation Tablet | Next Big Thing

Tablets are wonderful devices, providing unbelievable computing power in a simple-to-use package. But they aren’t good for developing technology problem-solvers.

This article was published in School Library Journal's July 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Library and Education Groups File Net Neutrality Comments with FCC

Concern over net neutrality rules prompted a joint filing by a coalition that includes ALA and EDUCAUSE, with suggestions to ensure the preservation of “an open Internet for libraries, higher education and the communities we serve.”

Amazon Launches Kindle Unlimited Ebook Subscription Service

Kindle Unlimited 600

Upon the announcement of Amazon’s ebook subscription program Kindle Unlimited, Gary Price, INFOdocket editor, writes “Are libraries ready to compete with these services?”

Are Today’s Kids All Thumbs? Touch Matters. Researchers Bring Tactile Learning into Digital Realm.

Are Today’s Kids All Thumbs? Touch Matters. Researchers Bring Tactile Learning into Digital Realm.

Using our hands is critical to learning, and the rise of digital devices in early childhood learning potentially limits children’s opportunities to learn about the world around them through touch. The Association of Teachers and Lecturers founds young children have trouble using toys and blocks because of their overuse of touch-screen devices. So, the digital industry is coming up with ways to use interactive touch and tools with the digital screen.

This article was published in School Library Journal's July 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Getting Hands on at ISTE’s Digital Age Library Playground | ISTE 2014

ISTE’s Digital Age Library Playground: A Dynamic Mix of Knowledge and Hands-On Tools | ISTE 2014

For three hours at ISTE’s Digital Age Library Playground, teacher librarians excitedly milled from station to station, absorbing knowledge, connecting with colleagues, and exploring new strategies. At any given time, hundreds of people were not only taking in the presenters’ shared knowledge, but trying out the resources being discussed.

Fight the ‘Zombie Librarians’ | ISTE 2014

Zombie Librarian

Jennifer LaGarde’s sold-out ISTE presentation, “How to Survive the Zombie Librarian Apocalypse!,” struck a chord among teacher librarians. Her talk hinged on a statement she’d once heard: “There are only two types of librarians: zombies and zombie fighters.”

Listen Up! Music Vault Adds 13,000 Live Concert Videos to YouTube

The collection features 2,000 hours of exclusive video of artists ranging from Bruce Springsteen and The Who to Metallica and The Roots.

Banned Books Week Announces Comics Focus | ALA 2014

Banned Books Week Announces Comics Focus | ALA 2014

The 2014 American Library Association (ALA) annual conference in Las Vegas this week set the stage for Banned Books Week, scheduled for September 21-27, 2014. This year, Banned Books Week will shine light on banned and challenged comic books and graphic novels. On the show floor, the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), which provides legal support and expertise to readers, authors, and librarians, debuted a new handbook offering rundowns of commonly challenged comic titles, myths about banned books, and ideas for programming around Banned Books Week.

ALA Report Confirms Negative Impact of Filtering on Student Learning

ALA Report Confirms Negative Impact of Filtering on Student Learning

“Fencing out Knowledge: Impacts of the Children’s Internet Protection Act 10 Years Later” concludes that institutions using filtering software in order to receive certain federal funds routinely block more content than required, depriving students of access to information and collaborative tools.

Higher Ed Administrators Seek To Stem States’ Rush Away From Common Core

Higher Ed Administrators Seek To Stem States’ Rush Away From Common Core

The Common Core is set to change the way that K-12 education is administered across the U.S. Or at least it was, until a backlash from educators and politicians put the new set of education standards on hold in some states and rolled them back entirely in others. Now higher education officials, who had previously been largely absent from the debate, are speaking up in favor of the standards.

BookCon To Expand In 2015

BookConTo Expand In 2015

This year, the industry trade show Book Expo America (BEA) opened its doors to non-industry types, giving readers one day to flood New York’s Javits Center and connect with literary superstars at BookCon, a fan-driven event that grew out of the previous years’ Power Readers Day. While BookCon was a hit with many, bringing thousands of readers out to fill the show floor and rub elbows with their favorite authors, the event was not without some hiccups. Changes are already in store for next year’s iteration.

Horizon Report Cites Top Trends—and Major Challenges— in Ed Tech

Info Technology Forecast: 2014 NMC Horizon Report K-12 Edition Published and Available Online

The 2014 Horizon Report identifies “Rethinking the Role of Teachers” and the “Shift to Deeper Learning Approaches” as major trends. Competition from new education models and student data privacy are among the challenges related to ed tech adoption in K-12 schools.

Pleased to Meet You: Web apps for getting to know your students before fall

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School’s out. But before we know it, we’ll be thinking about next year. To jazz up your blog and revitalize your summertime communication with parents and students, check out these fine tools.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Gaming the Common Core: Many board games align with the standards

Gaming the Common Core: Many board games align with the standards

When the library profession gathers in Las Vegas this month for ALA’s annual conference, how can we not consider gaming in libraries? Play-based learning is an effective way to address the learning style changes of the Common Core and other emerging standards.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Transmedia and Education: How Transmedia Is Changing the Way We Learn

Many Ways to Tell a Story: How Transmedia Is Transforming Education In and Out of Classrooms

SLJ explores how transmedia storytelling, or telling a story across media platforms, has cracked open possibilities for educators to teach and assess, as well as opportunities for students to learn.

This article was published in School Library Journal's June 2014 issue. Subscribe today and save up to 35% off the regular subscription rate.

Top Instructors to Teach Free MOOC on Copyright for Educators & Librarians

Registration is now open for the four-week Coursera MOOC, which runs from July 21 to August 18, 2014.

Beginning Next Month an All-Star Lineup of Instructors Will Teach a “Copyright for Educators & Librarians” MOOC, Registration Now Open

If you’re interested in learning about copyright and library issues from three highly-respected professionals then this MOOC is or you. This is an all-star faculty lineup if there ever was one. The MOOC is titled, “Copyright for Educators & Librarians” and is free. Registration is now open. Kevin Smith, Duke University;  Anne Gilliland, University of North Carolina Chapel […]

Seen & Heard | SLJ Day of Dialog 2014

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Check out scenes from SLJ’s exuberant “Day of Dialog” event (May 28) where librarians, authors, and publishers came together at McGraw-Hill headquarters in New York City.