Posts tagged Heather Moorefield-Lang

VaASL 2015

This year’s VaASL conference was very well-organized and informative.  Highlights of the conference were keynote addresses from Margaret Willison, pop culture guru, and Shannon Miller, an Iowa librarian who isn’t afraid to try anything and has a passion for the students and teachers with whom she works, and the Friday night author banquet with Maggie Steifvater, author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, who kept us in stitches with her 8-chapter life story.  They were each very entertaining and approachable. I learned something from each session I attended, including amazing websites from Heather Moorefield-Lang, Karla Collins, and Audrey Church, that I will share with students and teachers at my school. Other topics that will help me improve our library were about diverse book selections, how to host a poetry slam, handling 1:1 implementation, teaching summarization, and making over your website.  I even learned a lot from visiting various vendors (Alexandria, Follett, Mackin, Worldbook, Gale Cengage, and Library of Virginia) in the exhibitor hall. I will definitely attend next year’s conference in Norfolk!


Loving Libraries at VAASL

Stacy Hammer, Dorathy Winkler, Michelle Sanders

Stacy Hammer, Dorathy Winkler, Michelle Sanders

Last weekend I spent some time in lovely Roanoke at the VAASL 2014 Annual Conference at the Hotel Roanoke. Though I enjoyed the town, the shops, the hotel, and the restaurants, it was the conference that I enjoyed most of all.  As a library student at Longwood, this conference was an excellent educational experience.  Some highlights of the conference included:

  • Destination Imagination with Kimberly Johnson-  Kimberly shared activities that I was able to use in my classroom on Monday.  She is full of energy and shared activities that suit the needs of students who are full of energy.  I will be using her strategies now, as a classroom teacher, and in the future as a school librarian.
  • AASL Best Websites for Teaching and Learning with Heather Moorefield-Lang – Heather is a great speaker and shared some of the best websites for teaching a learning.  I can’t wait to incorporate these websites into teaching and student projects.  From creating banners and infographics in to turning a quote into a masterpiece with, I think I’m going to be keeping myself and my students busy and entertained.
  • Take 5 with Krista Hartenbach- Krista shared how she transformed the perception of the school librarian at her school with five minute presentations at every faculty meeting.  By providing tips, addressing misconceptions and concerns, and sharing resources, Krista changed the way her school library was viewed and utilized.  This was a beneficial session since I’ll be a new librarian at a school  in the near future.

I learned so much at the conference that I can apply to life as a librarian, but what so impression was the sense of community and sharing that the conference offered.  I’m excited for a future in School Librarianship.

VAASL Conference

VAASLHad a great time at my first conference, and was happy to sit in on informative sessions that are relevant to what I am doing with my library.  Heather Moorefield-Lang demonstrated some of AASL’s best websites and made me want to rush home just to try them out.  Of course they don’t seem quite as easy as when she demo’d  them, but after a bit of practice I’ll get it.  I heard about popular books for middle school students, how to flip the library so students are more self-sufficient and how to use a program to track library usage (LibraryTrac).  Knowing how important data is these days, having numbers to back-up why and how often the library is being used is a good way to show school administrators that libraries truly are the heart of the school.

A Student’s Experience at the VAASL Annual Conference

I had such a wonderful time at the VAASL Annual Conference! This was the first school librarianship conference I’ve ever attended and I am so excited to come back next year!

Although I was only able to attend for one day, I got to experience all the best that the conference had to offer. I sat in on informative concurrent sessions hosted by some of the field’s best and brightest (AASL Best Websites for Teaching and Learning with Heather Moorefield-Lang, Making the 2014 Elementary Connection: What’s New in Children’s Literature with Dee Griffith and Marsha Stewart, and Top Ten Topics and Trends for 2014 with Audrey Church). I spent time and made memories with my peers from the Loudoun cohort, perused the vendor hall, met up with my former library mentor Dee Griffith (here’s a picture of us from when I was in high school), laughed and ate more than my share of delicious deserts at the reception with David Baldacci, and was duly impressed by the overwhelming support for Audrey Church’s candidacy from the over 140 Longwood University alumni on Thursday night.

Most importantly, I felt validated that school librarianship is exactly what I want to do and where I belong. I truly felt like a member of not just a community of librarians all working toward the same goal, but a family. Everyone was so welcoming to a librarian student like me and I couldn’t be more grateful for helping to making this an unforgettable experience. (:

Brittany Biesecker (School Librarianship Program – Longwood University)


VAASL Conference in Roanoke 2014

Madigan and Daisy
Madigan at VAASL conferenceThis past weekend I had the pleasure of attending the Virginia Association of School Librarians (VAASL) conference in Roanoke.  Besides spending time with my colleagues from the Loudoun cohort of Longwood University, it was wonderful to meet so many librarians from around the state.  There are multitude of great things happening in Virginia libraries!  My favorite session was presented by the dynamic Heather Moorfield-Lang who compiles the VAASL “best of” website and apps lists every year.  She presented several websites like, and  I am looking forward to sharing this information with my school and colleagues.  The speakers were dynamic and invigorating, especially Kim Johnson and Neal Shusterman.  Hands down, the highlight of the weekend was hearing Dr. Audrey Church introduce each of us at the Longwood Alumni gathering.  Dr. Church makes all of us feel like we are the most important student to her, but to realize that there was a great network of librarians and future librarians in her fold made me feel like I am part of something special.

~Elizabeth Madigan

VAASL 2014


I attended several sessions at Friday’s Virginia Association of School Librarians Conference. The session with the most take-aways that apply across the board was the AASL’s best websites for teaching and learning.


I photocopied the bookmark for my colleagues and encourage you to visit Current and past winners are listed there, and the links are grouped into six categories: media sharing, digital storytelling, manage & organize, social networking & communication, curriculum collaboration and content resources. Every site listed should have some level of free access for educators, although an upgrade may have a price tag. You can visit the presenter’s website at


Another favorite site that is being overhauled for spring is the Library of Virginia’s Virginia Memory page. I was able to see a Beta version, and it looks user-friendly for both teachers and students. The primary documents that will be featured will also include a transcription, making some of the previous undecipherable manuscripts more accessible for all. (And if you want to help with transcribing, the LOV is crowdsourcing that on their current site,  )


It was a long, stressful drive in the rain on Thursday afternoon and evening, but the ride home Saturday was gorgeous. 81 is really breathtaking this time of year, and this episode of Car Talk kept me in stitches,


In the words of the parking lot attendant at the Hotel Roanoke, “Have a great day and a better tomorrow.”

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