Friday, July 1, 2011

A Beautiful Sunny Day -- in the Library

I'm looking at the beautiful summer day through the Manitowoc Public Library's patriotically decorated windows -- the children and teens painted all of the library's windows (and they have a lot of them) with Red White and Blue for the holiday.  It's a great yearly event, and the sunny skies have preserved their masterpieces (a lot of stars and flags and fireworks, though one window quotes from The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere.  Check out the video from Good Day, Wisconsin!

I spent all day yesterday working with my colleagues to hammer out our vision statement.  The three groups  (elementary, middle, high school) of librarians had remarkably congruent top five lists ("big rocks").  We are going to try to polish it via Google Docs, and it is a stronger document because of everyone's contributions.  I will post a final copy when it is approved.

Homework, homework, homework.  Isn't reading Facebook demonstrating my web 2.0 savvy?  Or answering a panic question on my work email from the summer school librarian?   When I was in undergraduate school, I used to study in the floor of the library with the Asian languages collection so I would not give in to temptation.  Only the Core Collection at Northwestern, a library within a library, was open from midnight to 2 am.  I was often there, but, while my boyfriend often got work done, I read a lot of interesting a quite random books published by Northwestern professors. Or whatever was nearest to me in the stacks -- and every study carrel was within an arms length of a book shelf.   I still remember the one about hiking the length of the Appalachian Trail. . .A bucket list item I have not gotten to, and a book which predates A Walk in the Woods by 20 years.  Though if you have not read Walk in the Woods, it is laugh aloud funny!  [And we see how an essay about distractions can itself include distractions. . . ]

One of our challenges as educators is to help our students feel the joy or exploration and discovery, while also helping them to focus in a world of distractions right on their keyboard -- the very tool we want them to use for school.  No hiding among foreign alphabets for them.  Anyone have any ideas?

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Fortune Cookie

Information is not knowledge.
Knowledge is not wisdom.
Wisdom is not truth.
Truth is not beauty.
Beauty is not love.
Love is not music.
Music is the best.
Frank Zappa