Archive for December, 2008

On Being Скотт Вестерфельд

December 20th, 2008

Check out Scott Westerfeld’s hilarious post about his Russian alter ego.

AudioBooks OverDrive

December 18th, 2008

Check out what the Maricopa Library District offers for AudioBooks. I may have to get a card now.

Play Go on the XO

December 15th, 2008

The One Laptop per Child is in full swing, where really durable/rechargeable laptops replace outdated textbooks and materials. Each one is equipped for Internet and has free, open source software.

One program is PlayGo, where students can play the ancient board game Go against each other. What’s really cool is that it’s multiplayer across the Internet. Lots of fun.

Grand Canyon Awards Committee

December 12th, 2008

On Thursday I got an e-mail about our AzLA presentation, Set Your Library on Fire II (it was a sequel year). I received an invitation from Kerrlita Westrick to be on the Grand Canyon Reader Award Committee.

To put it into context for the non-librarians followers of the site, the Grand Canyon Reader Award is a collection of the best books within the past five years. The committee recommends ten books and then students vote on the best book, like an Oscar award for a book. On top of that, places like Phoenix Book Company and Barnes and Noble will designate special places of honor in their displays for the Grand Canyon Awards. Librarians will buy multiple copies of the books, even if they haven’t read them, simply because they’re on the list.

I get to do Griggs Greats for the state. I am very thankful and excited.

AzLA Documents

December 9th, 2008

Some of the audience members asked for permanent links to the handout and the guidebook. The permanent button will be here.
(You can click on AzLA in the header menu bar, as well.)

Set Your Library on Fire II: The Handout

December 8th, 2008

We’re almost ready to present at AzLA tomorrow. (I think we’re in a large room. I’ll definitely have to take pictures.) Check back regularly this week for updates from the conference.

The first update: here’s our handout.

Tales of Beedle the Bard

December 8th, 2008

I just finished Beedle the Bard and actually liked it better than Deathly Hallows. I am a fan of books that present themselves as history even though we know it’s fiction.

This is a Brothers Grimm for Wizarding families to teach the morals that even though you have magic, it won’t solve all of your problems. I also appreciate the commentary provided by Dumbledore as well as Rowling’s commentary and Dumbledore’s commentary. Librarians will especially chuckle when they read about one of the Malfoys trying to censor books off of Hogwart’s shelf because of the questionably positive depiction of Muggles corrupting the youth of Wizarding communities. It’s Rowling’s own way of responding to the people wanting to censor the Harry Potter series.

Spielberg Wants in on the 39 Clues

December 7th, 2008

Steven Spielberg is scheduled to direct the 39 Clues movie. I read the first one and enjoyed it, but this announcement came out over the summer. It shows just how much financial backing this series is getting if a movie is discussed even before students start reading it.

Patrick Carman’s Spooky New Project

December 7th, 2008

Skeleton Creek comes out in February, but he’s got a great website leading up to the book’s launch. How much is real and how much is fiction?

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens – Provided by Project Gutenberg

December 4th, 2008

We ran out of class copies for check out for one our honors Language Arts classes. We have enough for a class set, but not for everyone to take home.

Enter one of my favorites: Project Gutenberg.

Project Gutenberg takes public domain documents and indexes them. Many times you’ll find audio versions, as well.

So, for that Language Arts class, enjoy the classic Charles Dickens’s A Christmas Carol, presented by Project Gutenberg.