March 22, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Make Your Own Infographics | Screencast Tutorial

You can create infographics—visual representations of data—from scratch using free web tools. Library consultant and educator Linda W. Braun takes you step by step through making your own infographic using and info.gram.

Tech Tidbits from the Guybrarian’s Gal: Make Technology Work for You

A friend of mine recently forwarded me one of those emails. I’m sure you’re familiar with them: lots of cute photos, and when you scroll to the bottom, you typically see some kind of humorous statement. This particular email had several pictures, all of teenagers—at the park, in a restaurant or car, at a baseball game. And in every image, the teens wereahunched over, totally engrossed in their cell phones. The very last photo is of Albert Einstein, and it’s accompanied by a quote from him: “I fear the day that technology will surpass our human interaction. The world will have a generation of idiots.”

iPads for Everyone: How a small library program became a runaway hit and reached more than 4,100 kids and teachers

Carolyn Foote brought six iPads into her school library in a modest pilot program that evolved into a school-wide 1:1 rollout. Librarians are well-positioned to play a critical role, says Carl Hooker, director of instructional technology for Eanes ISD, “They are the conduit to the ed-tech department as well as being a ‘just in time’ trainer.”

Travis’s Excellent (Ereader) Adventure

In this month’s cover story for School Library Journal, Jonker, an elementary school librarian, documents the launch of an ereader lending program in words and pictures. This article is adapted from a series of posts at Jonker’s blog 100 Scope Notes, which is moving to

Making the Most of Video in the Classroom | Cool Tools

From Vialogues and SynchTube to TED-Ed, free tools for hosting conversation around videos.

What’s on My iPad: A few key apps let you hit the road laptop free

From Keynote to Penultimate, the must-have productivity apps SLJ columnist Christopher Harris puts to use while on the road.

Storybird—Digital Storytelling

Rarely do I come across a tech tool that’s great for younger students as well as older ones. Well, here’s one you need to about: Storybird, an online collaborative storytelling tool, just knocked my socks off! And the best part about it is that kids really enjoy Storybird and it can be meshed into nearly any curriculum.

But don’t just take my word for it. Go to its website and follow the step-by-step instructions. You can start with a single click […]

Lessons from the Trenches | The Gaming Life

Best practices for using games and simulations in the classroom

We know that educational games and simulations can be valuable tools to reach and teach 21st-century students. However, many traditional classrooms and media centers aren’t designed to support educators who want to use them. Teachers and librarians are often required to justify the purchase and use of games in the classroom. And they sometimes even ask themselves if they have successfully met their intended educational objectives when they do use games […]

2009 ALSC Notable Videos and Recordings for Children & Great Interactive Software for Kids

The Notable Children’s Videos, Recordings, and Great Interactive Software for Kids lists are compiled annually by committees of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). These lists were released in January 2009 during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Denver, CO. The items on these lists, intended for children 14 years of age and younger, were selected based on their originality, creativity, and suitability for children.


2009 Notable Children’s Videos Committee: Kathy […]

Zotero Makes Online Research Easy

I’ve been seeing Zotero mentioned in blogs lately, and wondered what it was all about. After reading about it and watching the Zotero tour, I’m positively intrigued. Zotero is a Firefox extension (sorry, IE users) that allows you to capture, manage and cite online research resources. You can take a snapshot of a Website, make notes about it, tag it and organize Web sites into folders. Zotero captures the citation information from the Website

automatically, and when you’re ready to cite […]

One More Story, Please

Two new products will delight both readers and writers

There’s nothing more satisfying than hearing a favorite story read aloud over and over again. Unfortunately, for many children this opportunity isn’t always available. However, there are two wonderful online programs that offer children not only the opportunity to listen to or read picture books, but to also become a published author themselves.


Grades PreS-4

Cost Subscriptions for school libraries cost $1.10 per student per year with a minimum cost of $110

The […]

Free for All: Open Source Software

Open source software has become a catchword in libraryland. Yet many remain unclear about open source’s benefits … or even what it is.

So what is open source software (OSS)? It’s software that is free in every sense of the word: free to download, free to use, and free to view or modify. Most OSS is distributed on the Web and you don’t need to sign a license agreement to use it.

Illustration by Mark Tuchman

In fact, you’re probably using OSS […]