Posts tagged Stephen Krashen

VAASL Conference 2014

11-17-2014 8-49-57 PMI had a wonderful time attending the Virginia Association of School Librarians (VaASL) conference this November in Roanoke, Virginia. I enjoyed meeting experienced librarians and attending a variety of sessions. Here were some of the highlights:

  • Listening to Thursday’s keynote speaker and leading researcher on sustained silent reading, Stephen Krashen. He highlighted a 2013 study from the UK which showed that reading books often at the age of 10 and reading books more than once a week at the age of 16 has a greater impact on student reading ability than any other factor, including socioeconomic status, being read to as a child, visiting the library, or the education of the parent. This study, along with much of Krashen’s other research, supports my current school’s focus on SSR and continued commitment to giving students time to read choice novels during the school day!
  • Learning about new types of technology, such as Voki, where students can select an avatar of their choice to read a piece of text, or record their own voice reading the information. By using the program, students are given a way to publish their work and develop a larger audience than just the teacher.
  • Attending the session titled “Repackaging Research for the Hyper-connected Millennial.” In the session, the Paige Jaeger explored ways to increase the rigor and relevance of research projects by focusing on essential questions that encourage inquiry, vocabulary of the discipline, and a knowledge product. She gave numerous examples on how to transform a research packet into a purposeful assignment that encourages students to wonder, investigate, find meaning, discover, synthesize, and draw conclusions from what they learn.

Overall, the conference was a worthwhile experience. I am excited to use my newfound knowledge however I can throughout the school year!


VAASL Conference

20141106_134208[1]Last week, I had the wonderful opportunity to attend the Virginia Association of School Librarians annual conference.  It was a great learning opportunity for me as a student in the School Librarianship program.

Some of the things that I learned about were elementary library centers, creating a library that supports teachers, and how to better promote my library program.  Hearing the keynote speakers was inspirational and really supported many of the things that I already knew about reading.  The one point that Dr. Steven Krashen made that will stick with me for many years was the best way to close the achievement gap is to provide greater access to books.

The best part of the conference was the networking opportunities.  I got to meet and make connections with librarians from across the state.

VAASL Conference


Laura Robinson & Mary Ivory

I’m so happy that I got to experience the VAASL Conference. What a wonderful opportunity for librarians to share with other librarians (and librarians to be)! I attended some really great sessions. First I went to a session presented by Lynne Farrell Stover called The Contemporary School Story: A New Nemesis Appears. I heard this presenter at Longwood over the summer when she shared her lessons on Unspoken by Henry Cole so I knew I would enjoy it. She went through a few books that are now incorporating story lines with testing and data. She handed out lesson plans to go along with the titles she shared. I will be able to do some of these lessons in my own class and I’ll share them with the librarian in my school.

I also attended a session presented by Elizabeth Kyser and Rebecca Schneeberger called Virginia Readers’ Choice – Primary. These two presenters went through the newest list of Virginia Readers’ Choice books and talked about how you can use them in your classroom or library. I learned that the books on this list are not necessarily new. I saw titles that I’ve been using in my classroom for years. Uh, why did I not know that?

Dee Griffith and Marsha Stewart presented a session on Making the 2014 Elementary Connection: What’s New in Children’s Literature. This session was fast paced with book talks on a lot of new books! I feel like since I’m not using different types of technology in the library yet, I wanted to go to sessions on books. This one was perfect! Oh… the wish list of books I want to purchase!

The next session I attended was presented by the one and only Audrey Church – Top Ten Topics and Trends for 2014. I had told myself that I wasn’t going to attend sessions by our professors because they would most likely share this information in our classes at some point. But when I saw the title of this one, I knew Audrey wouldn’t be sharing this in class. This was another fast paced presentation on topics such as augmented reality, digital curation, evidence-based practice, genrefication, library reports, Makerspaces, professional development, project-based learning, and research. Wow! I plan on purchasing a few augmented reality books for my classroom. My students will love them. I also want to learn more about digital curation so I’ll be reading some of the articles Audrey gave us.

On Friday I attended NonFicton StoryTime by Gwen Lantz and Margaret Alger. The pair went through non-fiction books and talked about how they used them in the classroom. I got excited about using non-fiction and learned how to read this type of text to engage kids. The story behind Biblioburro: A True Story from Columbia by Luis Soriano was amazing. He had a library on his donkey!

I went to a session presented by Susan Morris called Reading Together: Parent/Child Book Clubs. She explained how book clubs are a great way to bring kids and parents together to enjoy good books. She went through the steps on how to start a book club and which books she chooses and why. I probably took the most out of this session because it’s something I’m going to do as soon as I get back to school.

I went to a session presented by a very animated Allyson Watkins (I wish she was my teacher/librarian when I was little) called The Math-literature Connection in the Elementary Library. Not only did we learn about good titles to use with math, but also her story about why she had to do so much math in the library was very interesting.

By this point in the day I was happily on information overload and went to relax in my room. The keynote with Stephen Krashen was uplifting, dessert with David Baldacci was very entertaining, and dinner with Neal Shusterman was moving. How lucky for me to be able to experience all this in just a few days! I am so looking forward to the next time we all get together as librarians and learn from one another. Fabulous!

VAASL Annual Conference November 6 – 8, 2014

The Hotel Roanoke and Conference Center in Roanoke, Virginia was a great location for the annual Virginia Association of School Librarians conference.  The hotel provided the space necessary for all the wonderful sessions and participants.  There were so many presentations offered that I could not attend them all.  The highlights of my trip included the Keynote speakers, Stephen Krashen and Paige Jaeger, both of whom I enjoyed so much that I attended their concurrent sessions.  I was pleased to listen to Neal Shusterman discuss his novels, writing  and favorite authors.  Paul Barron taught valuable Google search methods, and librarians and teachers shared classroom ideas – many of which I will be able to incorporate into my own curriculum.  The first timers breakfast was a treat, as were all the door prizes.  The VAASL Annual Conference is definitely not to be missed!


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