Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Schools Should Be Teaching Kids How to Use the Internet Well - Abigail Walthausen - The Atlantic

Randy Snyder/AP Photo

During this year’s State of the Union
address, President Obama championed the goal of increasing bandwidth in
schools across the country. The following day, a group of CEOs wrote an open letter encouraging
the chairman of the FCC to “act boldly to modernize the E-rate program
to provide the capital needed to upgrade our K-12 broadband connectivity
and Wi-Fi infrastructure.” These calls to action were answered
with pledges from business leaders amounting to $750 million dollars,
an influx of money that should help provide more enriching learning
environments for students across the country.  

As schools begin to plan for the benefits of
improved connectivity, it is important to consider the responsibility of
giving students guidance in becoming productive citizens of the web.
New curricula must acknowledge the many-headed hydra that is social
media: Its forms range from the mundane
distraction to be overcome to the 21st century communication skill to be
mastered. Integration of conscious social media use as well as policies
that provide more free and unfiltered Internet access are two ways of
modeling best practices and actively teaching Internet skills within
schools.
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Thursday, February 20, 2014

Why libraries deserve to be hip -

Why libraries deserve to be hipEnlarge (Credit: track5 via iStock)
afternoon, I’m picking up my younger daughter from school and I’m taking
her someplace special. It’s a place she and I can look at works by
local artists, where we can read quietly together, where we almost
always run into friends. It’s one of best places in the world. You’ve
probably got something like it where you live too. It’s called the library.

are not terribly fashionable. You’d think they would be. In a world in
which educated, enlightened, planet-hugging types are all up in that
composting and upcycling and no impact lifestyle, these wonderful places
where you can just borrow stuff and then bring it back so someone else
can enjoy it somehow languish. Last year was the first year in several
that New York City libraries didn’t face any budget cuts – though branches shut after Hurricane Sandy remain unrestoredLibraries in Detroit have been shuttered in the city’s economic crisis. In the U.K., libraries face closures as the number of people using them plummets. Read more....
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Friday, February 14, 2014

2014 Workplace Trends Report Reveals Business-Critical Forecasts, Including 30 Emerging Jobs of the Future

Sodexo's report provides a detailed glimpse into the "always-on" workplace of tomorrow, offering solutions on how to get employees engaged, healthy and productive

Gaithersburg, Md., January 23, 2014 – With 54 percent of our waking hours spent at work, the employee of the future will expect to spend more time enjoying a series of memorable events and interactions that are company-initiated, according to the 2014 Workplace Trends Report, released today by Sodexo. Now in its third year, the report examines key trends and solutions linked to higher employee retention, engagement and increased productivity in more efficient, intelligent buildings. It is critical business intelligence, considering that of the approximately 100 million people in America who are employed full-time, only 30 percent of them are engaged and inspired at work.i
Sodexo’s 2014 Workplace Trends Report identifies 10 significant trends:
  1. Workplace Experience Design
  2. Creating an Engaging Work Environment Through Gamification
  3. Health-Centered Buildings: A Paradigm Shift in Buildings and Operation
  4. Cross Cultural Understanding and Management
  5. Always On: Managing the Challenges of Work-Related Communication Technology
  6. Demonstrating Value in Employee Recognition Programs: Why VOI is the New ROI
  7. Constructing "Smarter" Buildings
  8. Creating the Future of Work: Getting Started
  9. 30 Jobs of the Future and How to Create Them
  10. Total Health: Integrated Approaches to Worker Health Promotion and Protection
The Sodexo report finds that today's workforce is looking for more meaningful, relevant work; flexibility, training, civility among peers; and rewards and recognition germane to personal values. Employees want an "experience" -- one that creates an attachment to their organization. The report provides insights on how companies can create that experience, and why not doing so will have significant bottom-line implications for every business.
"You don't hire engaged people, you create them," said Michael Norris, chief operating officer, Sodexo North America. "The key to creating engaged employees lies in the experience you create for them at work. It's not only understanding how to enhance their productivity and engagement; it's also about uncovering and executing on ways to improve their quality of life." Read more...
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Thursday, February 13, 2014

It’s Time to Act | American Libraries Magazine

African-American college student studying at the Texas Woman’s University Library
Often statistics tell a story that spurs us to action. Consider:

  • Only 13% of African-American male 4th graders and 11% of
    African-American male 8th graders scored at or above proficient on
    national reading tests;
  • Barely half of all African-American males graduate from high school, and only 5% go to college;
  • Black male teens are eight times more likely to die from homicide than white male teens;
  • African-American males make up only 14% of the US population but nearly 40% of prison inmates;
  • Despite research that links quality school library programs to
    increased student achievement, many African-American youth live in
    communities where school libraries are underfunded, collections are out
    of date, and full-time librarians are scarce. Read more....
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Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Kyle Cassidy photographs librarians at the American Library Association Midwinter Meeting (PHOTOS).

When you think of a librarian, what image comes to mind? Photographer Kyle Cassidy
ventured to the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in
Philadelphia in January to explore that question. In between networking,
educational events, and panels, librarians from across the country
stopped by Cassidy’s makeshift studio to sit for a portrait. The result
is a celebration of the diversity in the librarian community. “I
realized I had a stereotype in my mind of what a librarian looked like,
which is one of the reasons I wanted to do this project. Whenever I
think something is true, I'm often wrong,” Cassidy said. “I tend to
think of librarians as the ones I know from my public library and from
school. But there are librarians who are researchers and archivists
doing extraordinarily technical work. There are librarians who work in
specialized fields who have to know about archaeology, for example, or
medicine or research science. The field was broader than I had gone in
there thinking.”

Ingrid Abrams, a librarian at Brooklyn Public Library who
participated in the project, said diversity among librarians extends
beyond their professional expertise. “If you haven't been in
a library since you were a little kid, or maybe have only
seen libraries in movies, you might think we're all a bunch of
humorless, shushing curmudgeons,” Abrams said via email. “The truth is,
we're a variety of ages. We're every race, ethnicity and religious
background imaginable. We can be the type who wears a suit and tie every
day or someone like me, who has pink hair and dresses in bright colors.
Not that any part of how we look really matters, but if the
only librarian you've ever seen is the librarian ghost from the first
scene of Ghostbusters, I assure you we're a really dedicated and friendly bunch.”

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Why’d Middle States Go and Do That?

Those of us who work for colleges and universities in the
mid-Atlantic region were taken by surprise when the word suddenly spread
that a draft revision of the Characteristics of Excellence,
the primary set of standards for higher education accreditation
published by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE)
now omitted any reference to the library or information literacy as a
learning outcome. The surprise was followed by shock for good reason.

MSCHE has been a good friend to academic librarians. It was an early
adopter of specific language in its standards addressing information
literacy as a desired learning outcome. This was a departure from
earlier standards that only spoke mostly to the physical qualities of
the academic library (e.g., Did it have adequate study carrels? Were the
hours adequate for the institution? Were there librarians available to
provide research help?). When the 2002 edition of the MSCHE standards
were adopted it was a quantum leap ahead for information literacy in
higher education.
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Friday, February 7, 2014

Who Says Libraries Are Going Extinct? - Pacific Standard: The Science of Society


February 06, 2014 •
6:00 AM
Bates Hall in Boston Public Library. (Photo: SeanPavonePhoto/Shutterstock)

With nearly 2.5
billion materials circulated through more than 16,000 public branches,
2013 was one of the strongest years for libraries in the past decade.
And things are looking up.

America’s network of public libraries
is older than America itself. You can make a strong case that the
precursor to our modern book-lending system was developed in Boston in
1636, in Charleston in 1698, by Benjamin Franklin and his Philadelphia
cohort in 1731, or in the Massachusetts town that named itself after
Franklin in 1790. But what is indisputable is that this “amazing
decentralized mutual aid” creation, as one librarian described
it, was founded on a radical belief that all citizens have a right to
information, art, and literature. That these things are not a luxury,
but a necessity, is an idea that turned the old elite concept of private
libraries and ivory towers on its head.

Perhaps it’s no surprise, then, that the people locked out of the
traditional venues for knowledge are the ones who pioneered the public
library. By donating book collections, fundraising for better buildings,
and lobbying for political support, women’s clubs around the country
were key forces in cultivating public libraries: 75 percent of America’s
libraries were started by them on humanistic principles. When the
Detroit Public Library was founded in 1865, “our nation was moving from
the concept of libraries as storehouses of books—considered as precious
physical objects for the use of the few—to the conception of books and
libraries as people,” according to Parnassus on Main Street.

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New Which Social Networks Should You Care About in 2014? [Infographic] – Stephen's Lighthouse New

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Wednesday, February 5, 2014

ASCLA Online Learning Course: Going to Jail How Juvenile Books Portray the Prison Experience

ASCLA and RUSA, divisions of the American Library Association
Register now for ASCLA’s online course

“Going to Jail: How Juvenile Books Portray the Prison Experience

with Kate Todd

 Four week course

Live sessions

Thursdays, Feb. 24-Mar. 23, 2014

1-2pm CST

for children and young adults can portray how jail sentences impact
individuals, their children, their parents and their community.

Course Description: In this new 4-week course, you'll
read several juvenile books, from picture books to teen novels, which
explore the prison experience. You'll analyze the books in an online
discussion, discuss age appropriate information that should be provided
for youth, look at statistics about who goes to jail and consider the
role that libraries can play in assisting patrons dealing with these
issues. The discussion/chat can also be a model for librarians who want
to lead book discussions for their patrons.

Learning Outcomes:

Participants who complete this course should be able to:
  • assist children, young adults, parents and teachers in finding age appropriate books that portray the impact of incarceration;
  • become familiar with resources that provide facts and research about the population in the United States that is behind bars;
  • Develop appropriate services for their communities that address
    literacy and other needs of families impacted by correctional
Students who complete the required coursework for “Going to Jail: How
Juvenile Books Portray the Prison Experience” will receive 1.5 CEUs
(Continuing Education Units).
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Monday, February 3, 2014

Petition | Designate 31 West 57th Street as an individual and interior landmark. |

Designate 31 West 57th Street as an individual and interior landmark.

Designate 31 West 57th Street as an individual and interior landmark.

    1. Petition by

Rizzoli Bookstore building is an icon of New York City architecture and
one of the most beautiful commercial spaces in America. It is an
impressive example of adaptive reuse of a former piano showroom into a
retail space and one of the few remaining examples of architecturally
significant bookstores in an era where bookstores are increasingly
Recently, Vornado and Le Frak Realty have announced plans to demolish the building in order to build a new high-rise. (International Business Times article)
The Landmarks Preservation
Commission, whose mission is “to be responsible for protecting New York
City's architecturally, historically, and culturally significant
buildings,” has declined to grant landmark status to the building on the
grounds that the property “lacks the architectural significance
necessary to meet the criteria for designation,” despite the Community
Board voting unanimously in favor of designating 31 W 57TH Street a
landmark in 2007 (Link to Community Board Resolution)
Peg Breen, President of NY Landmarks Conservancy, said "it’s unlikely at this point that the “three little gems” will be saved unless a public backlash is strong enough to convince city officials otherwise."(Quoted in IBS article above)
Tell the Landmark Preservation Commission that 31 W 57th Street is architecturally significant and deserves landmark status!
For more news, visit our webpage:

New York City Landmarks Preservation Commission

Designate 31 West 57th Street as an individual and interior landmark.

[Your name]
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