ETL 501. Topic 5. Web 2.0 and the school library.

What do you think are the key aspects of Web 2.0 that are likely to impact on education in today’s schools? 

As Web 2.0 is about revolutionary new ways of creating, collaborating, editing and sharing user-generated content online, teachers and students can master these tools quickly and efficiently, with the technology easier and more accessible to everyone. Quality websites can be accessed and used for teaching and learning in all school communities and integrated/implemented into curricular programs across all levels.

What are the opportunities here for teacher librarians? 

There are Presentation, Video, Mobile, and Community Tools with related links, which students and teachers can use to collaborate, communicate and share work and learning. By using Web 2.0 teachers and TL’s can collaborate on providing appropriate websites for specific curricular topics and incorporate information literacy skills and strategies.

Can teacher librarians afford to ignore Web 2.0 tools?

No. TL’s cannot afford to ignore Web 2.0 tools as they are the future of education and teaching and learning in the 21st century, besides complimenting and enhancing National Curriculum Learning Areas and Topics. These tools provide opportunities for students to upload, create, edit and share creative presentations anywhere, anytime, and integrate video into shared projects and presentations. Mobile tools are perfect for podcasting, blogging, media sharing, and quizzes, as well as turning mobile phones into smart teaching tools. Community tools such as wikis and social networks enable teachers and students to collaborate, communicate and share work, vital for effective teaching and learning within school communities.

 What might be the problems a teacher librarian would face in maintaining a school library blog?

Blogs are an excellent means of communication for new ideas or personal opinions to be shared through a social network, and excellent sources of new information resources or the latest technologies. However, blogs are still personal in content and contain opinions and ideas from the point of view of the author rather than objectively or independently. TL’s need to consider this aspect when they are deciding the context of the school library blog; will it be an educational review on the latest student literature written by the TL or various reputable reviewers, or various student’s reviewing novels and their recommendations? In both cases the TL needs to define the structure of the blog and regulate the content in accordance to school guidelines and educational standards.

How you might use a wiki in a classroom?

Wikis provide users with a tool that can be easily accessed, edited, and updated. As we create a more collaborative 2.0 school library environment, wikis provide an opportunity for students and teachers to actively create new information for others by note taking or making a collaborative knowledge portal or a community website.  Students can easily contribute to a website and add their content on a particular topic to enhance the value of the web pages with their personal thoughts, learning and experiences.

Generating a wiki takes only a few steps, which includes naming the wiki and providing the wiki creator’s name and a password. Wikis provide educators with an opportunity to work beyond the traditional four walls of the classroom or library and allow teachers to create a program online and share it immediately. Through the use of tagging students can quickly locate specific information without browsing the SideBar, and add content through plugins that include video content that can be uploaded from TeacherTube,  voice chat options, photos, and other content, providing a new dimension to an already interactive product.

How can curation tools such as Delicious and Diigo be useful? What are the limitations and issues relating to the use of such tools?

Students can organise their own resources and store them for future use by using Bookmarking tools like Diigo or Delicious in their development as independent learners. It will save time for TL’s who won’t have to search/provide websites for students and their role will become as facilitators rather than teachers. Students would need to be limited to how many websites they could bookmark for one particular topic and organise/curate their collections carefully, to include only quality sites and prevent information becoming out-of-date or superseded.



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