I very much enjoy attending the South Carolina Association of School Librarians‘ Annual Conference. Every year, in March, SC librarians gather in Charleston, Columbia, or Greenville to network, learn, and have fun with others who “get it.” I have been a member of SCASL for about 13 years and I’m fairly certain I haven’t missed one conference…as a Past-President of SCASL, I can even say that I’ve planned one of our conferences (and have assisted planning 2 others)! It gives you such a sense of appreciation for the Conference Planning Committee once you’ve been “behind the scenes.” Planning a conference is HARD WORK and this year’s conference ROCKED!
Wednesday was the Pre-Conference Day and Exhibit Hall Grand Opening. I did not attend any sessions on Wednesday, but I did go to the Grand Opening and I did help to make this happen: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yeETzDqImUM (Harlem Shake – SCASL)
On Thursday, I wanted to be back at school in time to help with our Girls on the Run team, so I was able to attend the morning sessions. I went to a Common Core session with Jen Chesney and Ashley Gordon. It was geared toward secondary folks, but I went anyway because it was the only Common Core session I could fit in to my schedule. It was PERFECT. Really, it was for all levels, because the ideas that these awesome ladies shared can work K – 12. I’m very glad I went.
My presentation with some of my most favorite librarian friends was on Thursday morning. We presented about our South Carolina Children’s Book Award Edmodo Book Club. I love these ladies…great ideas happen when you collaborate with your peeps!
My official conference day ended at the General Business Session with Keith Curry Lance. Lance is a name that you hear a billion times in library school and his research is something I have shared lots and lots with administrators. Good stuff that proves what librarians know…having a certified school librarian in a school with a flexible schedule in the library does nothing but GOOD GOOD GOOD and makes kids, teachers, and parents SMART and HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY…IF they use us and IF we do a good job getting used (in a good way). Interesting to see him in person for the first time after feeling like I’ve known him for a long time.
I spent the afternoon in the Exhibit Hall and at the South Carolina Center for Children’s Books and Literacy with my Wonder Woman friend, Mary Haddon. Great day of networking, learning, and talking with vendors. Capping it off at SCCCBL was perfect. You should go there, if you haven’t already. For real. SCCCBL is open to teachers and librarians to read and check out the newest children’s books and books for young adults. It is wonderful!
On Friday, I went to a session about school news shows. I’m always looking for ideas to get our show going…on a regular basis. The way I am trying to do it now just isn’t working. I got some really good ideas at this session that I am going to talk to my principal about and I think we will have a real weekly show very soon! Thanks to Donna Thompson at ETV for an informative presentation!
I also attended a session about iPads. This was very helpful…I really liked the “APPlication” this group showed off that one of them uses with their teachers and students. We have some guidelines that are posted on our iPads, but not really an “agreement” or application. While it isn’t something we can start at this point in the school year, it may be something we can look at to kick off next school year. Overall, a really good session by librarians from Lancaster County!
The last session I went to was about working with your public library and summer reading. Good stuff! I actually wrote an article about this very topic for Novelist (did you see it?). Their presentation was awesome and I wish I could have stayed for the whole thing. I had to be back to school in time for Kindergarten, so I had to sneak out a little early, but there was lots of good info shared in this session. I gotta say that I have never met Kate Walker from Anderson Public Library before, but she’s AWESOME. I bet that library’s teen program is fantastic. She is so passionate about those teens and her love of what she does shows. Loved her!
All in all, a fantastic conference and I can’t wait for next year! I am proud to be a member of SCASL and to be a part of such a wonderful network of librarians!