Monday, December 28, 2015

Saying goodbye is always hard

Debbie Alvarez at Bradbury School

About five years ago I discovered and started following @stylinlibrarian on Twitter and started reading her blog.  Her book reviews formed the basis of much of the collection I was developing for a new school. We started commented on each other's blogs and started conversing on Twitter. Her passion for children's literature was palpable and her reverence and respect for the authors of these books was also very apparent. We got to know each other virtually over about 8 months, and then she tweeted something that got me very excited. She had accepted a position in Hong Kong in the school system I was working in. Finally I was going to meet and hopefully work with this legend.

Debbie brought her family and dog across to Hong Kong ready for a new adventure and they hit the ground running, exploring all the fun things to do in the city and region. It was fun for me to read her blog entries on the city I had been a long term resident of.

One day I received a call from Deb asking how to deal with speeding up the cataloging of non English books, and how to get the records using SCIS, the Australian Schools Cataloguing service which she had never used before. I was thankful I was able to help her out with both. The blog post on Chopac was created as part of my efforts to help her with these issues.

We finally met face to face at one of the local school librarians meet ups. I still remember how excited I was that she was in Hong Kong and that we were meeting in person. At this particular meeting it was brought up that it might be good for the English Speaking Schools to create a book awards, similar to those found in Singapore, China and Japan.

Of course Deb was right onto that, volunteering immediately to be on the working group to get this up running. It took about 6 months of planning, and in the year of 2013 the Golden Dragon Awards had been born with the main driver behind the organisation and structure being Deb. It was about this time that she was diagnosed with cervical cancer and underwent surgery. All the while still working full time, reading and blogging and setting up these awards.

She attended an IB librarians workshop I facilitated in HK, being very willing to share her knowledge of setting up a PLN as a participant contributor. She was interested in pursuing being an IB workshop leader before her first occurance of cancer. I am very sad to that she never had that opportunity to share her experiences and knowledge in a more formal way. We all would have benefited greatly from this.

Doug and Deb enjoyed swing dancing, it was in fact how they met, and there was a regular swing dancing meet-up in Hong Kong. My husband and I wanted to learn, so we asked if they would accompany us to one of these meet-ups. We all went along and had a lovely time. That evening Deb indicated that she was waiting on a biopsy results for a possible re-occurrence of cancer, which she would receive the next day and why she may be a little preoccupied.

She was unfortunately given bad news the next day and we never had the opportunity to do a double date again due to time and energy restraints which accompanied all our lives, but particularly hers as she battled the cancer. This was the time she went public with her illness on her blog "life's Journey interrupted" where she shared her daily struggles and wins with cancer. 

Through the out the whole time she was undergoing treatment, Deb would continue to attend the local librarian meetings where possible, and still maintained a driving  force behind the Golden Dragon Awards. Whatever Deb committed to, she committed 150 percent of her energy to, even when she was quite ill. It seemed she just added dealing with her illness on the to do list, rather than letting it consume her and her life.

I am so glad that Deb, Doug and Declan came to Hong Kong and even though their time in Hong Kong was not always the optimal experience as her health deteriorated, Deb has left a legacy here, as she did everywhere she has been. I was and still am in awe of one of the most energetic and tenacious people I have ever known, her blog posts and book reviews will continue for a few months after her death illustrating just how much passion she had for what she did and how organised she was. There have been numerous tributes on Twitter, Facebook and in her local Oregon Newspapers to an amazing woman, teacher librarian, mother, wife and writer from all over the world.  I am so glad I had the opportunity to know her professionally, virtually and personally. Some people make the world a better place just by being in it, and she was one of those people.  I am not sure that she had a complete understanding of how high people held her in their esteem, but I do hope she had an inkling before she passed away. Even though physically she was petite, she was a giant in so many ways.

My condolences and sadness reach out to Doug, Declan and her family as their pain, sadness and loss will be felt even stronger than myself and the community she left behind in Hong Kong and across the world.

The launch of the Golden Dragon Awards in HK (Deb second from the left)

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Getting social, media

Just recently a white paper was released by Taylor and Francis on "Use of social media by the library: current practices and future opportunities" which focused on the use of social media in a cross section of libraries across the world.

As I was preparing for a presentation on Social Media in school libraries, I wanted to see if the results would be the same for the school libraries specifically.

I first had to read the white paper carefully and read into the results and figure out the questions required to procure similar information - reverse engineering of sorts.

The survey I conducted was only over about 24 hours with 78 responses from a number of different schools internationally. This achieved the goal of giving me a snapshot of was happening and why. Some of the results are reproduced below with a brief commentary, the full analytics of the responses can be found at the following link Social media in schools snapshot. 97% of the respondents used social media for personal use.

Do you use social media in your library?

The columns who do not use social media were related to elementary schools and through schools. Those who used social media the most were middle, high school and through schools. More through schools were using social media than were not.

If you do not use social media in your library, what are the reasons?

There were many varied reasons as to why libraries were not using social media. The reasons I found most interesting were that there was no interest from colleagues, and the schools did not permit the use of social media for one reason or another. This suggests that schools are still not willing to acknowledge this form of communication as legitimate, or they are fearful or they simply do not know how to manage it. This question was not asked in the Francis & Taylor survey, but it was one which I felt needed to be there for school libraries as in many cases there is an entity beyond the library which makes decisions for them.

What social media platforms are you using?

You can see in the diagram that Facebook and Twitter are being used the most, with many others coming in close behind. I am sure with a larger sample, even more platforms would have been mentioned. It was acknowledged that each of these platforms, or channels can serve a different purpose. This use of Facebook and Twitter correlates directly with the Francis and Taylor study along with a number of other channels being experimented with.

How often are you posting?

The Francis and Taylor paper quoted the Riza Ayu and Abrizah 2011 study which found that libraries that updated their status daily had the highest user engagement (likes and follows). Interestingly from the chart above, most school libraries do not post very often. Does this mean they are not having the user engagement they could have if they posted more often? This post on the Sum all blog by Mark Uzunian gives guidance on how often one should be posting on different channels to harness the optimal user engagement.

Why are you using Social media?

The reasons for school libraries to use social media are similar to those found in the Francis and Taylor survey, with the most common reason to promote library activities and services. Something I had not considered was using social media as part of research activities.

Do you have a plan or a policy for your social media use?

This was the biggest shock to me. 90% of the libraries surveyed who are using social media do not have a plan or policy in place. Is this because they had never really thought about needing a plan or policy, or they didn't think it was necessary or they just set up accounts without really knowing what they were doing or without any real ideas but felt they needed to be using it? This figure was much higher than the Francis and Taylor finding of 70% without a plan or policy. In many cases postings were ad hoc and random.

Who are you targeting with your social media channel?

Having an audience in mind is imperative for good use of social media, and each social media channel will cater to a different audience. 30% of respondents acknowledged this. Parents and students were the main targets for social media, with school staff a very low priority.

Do you consider the timing of your postings?

The timing of postings is crucial to engaging your audience. If you post or schedule a post in the middle of the day when your target audience of students is unable to access social media at school, you may find the response is not as good as right after school when students are making their way home. This infographic from Quicksprout gives some ideas on the best times to post across different channels, but again it depends on your target audience and when they access their accounts.

The three main advantages of using social media in the library were identified as being 

  1. Fast dissemination of information 
  2. Increased awareness and use of the library
  3. Increased engagement and interaction with community
The three greatest challenges identified were 
  1. Time to find items to post
  2. Remembering to update and post
  3. Level of interest from staff
In 73% of respondents who use social media, only one person 
is responsible for making updates.

Promotion of the library social media channels is mainly done 
through, word of mouth, the school website and the Library 
OPAC front page.

The main types of information being posted are in the following table : 

There were varying answers to the question - How do you evaluate the effectiveness of your social media programme? with many indicating that they actually hadn't done any evaluation of the effectiveness, and other mentioned subjective measures such as likes and comments.  No respondents mentioned specifically looking at the analytics as a source of measurement. 

There are also aggregated analytics channels such as Buffer, Sum All, Followerwonk - more can be found for specific channels at this link from Bufferapp. 

Overall, I think the school library social media snapshot captured similar results to the Francis & Taylor survey with both showing that the use of social media has taken hold in libraries, but in many cases without a plan of action or without specific goals or purposes. The use of social media in school libraries is still in the developing stages.

The next step is to understand and apply how to make a plan and policies for social media in your school library, just like there is a policy for collection development and everything else you do.  

I think I may need to redo this research on a larger scale over a longer time period to gain more than a snapshot.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

EARCOS Conference - Taiwan - Day 2

Photo taken by Jenny Luca.

The last post I wrote was about Day 1 of learning at the EARCOS Conference - Taipei, Taiwan. This post will be about Day 2.

Day 2 started with my own presentation on "Social Media and the School Library – another time sucker or a meaningful connection? " where I discussed how making a plan for use of social media in your library or school is an important part of making sure it is meaningful, relevant and not a time waster. The presentation will be the next blog post - so stay tuned.

Next up was Barbara and Tim Boyer from Shanghai America School Middle and high school libraries presenting "Genre’fying your Books…Are you crazy?" discussing how they are currently going about the process of Genre'fying the fiction collection of 15,000 books. They talked about using parent volunteers, issues with placing books in specific genres and how they came up with their genre names and labels.

Following on from Barbara and Tim were Katie day and Barbara Reid on "Social Reading Sites and the Library" where they discussed aspects of social reading and did a brief overview of what is available, public vs private, and age appropriateness. They shared how different OPACs have the capacity for users to leave reviews and asked the question how effective were they? Do we make full use of this capacity? They also discussed Biblionasium for primary aged students and the pros and cons.

Barbara introduced MyOn which states it "provides anytime, anywhere access to a library of more than 10,000 enhanced digital books with multimedia supports, real-time reporting and assessments and embedded close reading tools." It is certainly worth a look for those looking into digital resources for the primary / elementary level.

A short discussion on Goodreads for older students followed where Katie shared a research and presentation from the GAFE summit in Singapore. Shelfari, Librarything and other similar social sites were discussed.

They finished their presentation talking about Press Reader a powerful news feeder that "Connects People through News. All-you-can-read digital newsstand with thousands of the world's most popular newspapers and magazines." It also has a social aspect to it to share, comment, see popular trends and create public bookmarks. The conclusion was that all of these tools are only as good as the way people use them, and if you are to move forward with any of these social reading platforms it is about promotion and use that makes the difference.

During lunch a few people went into the basement of TAS to see the 'stacks' that had been created when more digital content was added to the library and the physical books were moved out... I was late, so I missed out on this little field trip.  Katie Day took more photos you can view on her Google Photos page. I think I heard there are 20,000 titles held in the stacks in the basement.

After lunch there was a job alike discussion on various topics across the room. 

To finish off the 2 days we were fortunate enough the listen to Jenny Luca talk about "Making Change Happen – How do we do it?" She shared so much and so many links. I have captured a few  gems and links below.

Photo taken by Michael from the TAS communications office
Some people hate change - they don't hate you (Seth Godin) Don't take take it personally. 
To be a change agent - make it possible for people to connect with you on a human level. 

I also learned about the Dunning-Kruger effect - Smart people underestimate themselves & ignorant people think they're intelligent... we see this often in the school setting.

Jenny encouraged us to watch the following TED talks she has been inspired by ...

Leaning in at the work place  Sheryl Sandberg: Why we have too few women leaders
Start with the why ? Why is it important? Simon Sinek How great leaders inspire action
Develop your elevator pitch - 6 Elevator Pitches for the 21st Century

Jenny left us with a final thought ... Don't wait for someone else to take the leadership role - just do it.

The EARCOS mini conference workshop was a great learning experience. The sessions I attended resulted in excellent learning. There were other presentations I did not see (there was just not enough time!), these were : 

iPads in the Elementary Library by Barbara Middleton
Digital VS Analogue Reading by Pam Males & Angela Erickson
Embracing The Maker Movement in Your Library Jennifer Chapman
Library Laughter - Kimbra Power See Kimbra's blog post about it
Blogging and a Newbery Contender Book Club by Barbara Middleton
Writing Proposals that Work. Candace Aiani

All the presentations are available at the EARCOS blog page for a few more weeks.
Tweets are Storified here

Thanks so much to EARCOS, TAS, Candice, Barbara and Carol for organising a fantastic event.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

EARCOS Conference - Taipei, Taiwan. Day 1.

Last weekend I had the privilege of attending and presenting at the EARCOS "The Tech-Integrated Library: Imagining the Future One Service at a Time" workshop held at the Taipei American School, in Taiwan. The TAS school librarians who were instrumental in organising the event were Dr Candace Aiani, Barbara Middleton and Carol Youssif who did an outstanding job of balancing presentations with networking time.

EARCOS Librarian Weekend Workshop from Taipei American School on Vimeo.

There were over 70 in attendance with a number of excellent presentations on how technology is being integrated into library programs across the Asian region. Jenny Luca  (@jennyluca) from Melbourne, Australia started us off with her presentation on "Just What are we Preparing Our Students For?" where she shared with the fast pace of change in the workforce and what the students of today will be facing on graduation. Automation, globalisation and collaboration were the key takeaways from her presentation.

We then had an opportunity to use the app Klikaklu in supplied iPads in teams of three to explore the four (yes four) libraries of TAS. This app gives you visual clues that you need to find and match up. We had 15 clues to find throughout the libraries and it was quite engaging. Of course, we got sidetracked at all the fabulous things at in the TAS libraries. They have so much space, and I did not take nearly enough photographs, so I am hoping that others can share their links that I can share from here.
Klikaklu in action
The Chinese Library at TAS

The Lower School library - Just a beautiful space, this is only a portion of it.
The Middle School Library had a mini fair in it on this day,
so it was not in it's normal configuration.
The wow factor of the Upper school Library. Electonic RSS feed in the centre,
with touch screen ebook display on the sides.

iPad journals ready for reading, the quiet zone with the non fiction,
and a beautiful large space for the fiction.
After the Klikaklu tour, I chose to attend Candace's session on "eBook lending and Purchasing models" where she shared how she has moved into providing ebooks, journals and most of the collection for the senior students into a digital format. She uses Zinio For Libraries where students can access and download onto their own devices and also Zinio for Consumers and Newsstand  all accessible on iPads in the library.

Candace then explained to us the various models she uses to provide the resources for her students information requirements and the advantages and disadvantages offered by each. 

We then looked at providing access to these options through the online catalogue and other means. The overall conclusion was that offering access to students to digital resources is still very messy.

Next on my learning was Kate Brundage from Singapore American School "Using everyday data to promote student learning". Kate shared with us one lesson she developed where the students accessed their own school / reading log / borrowing records and reflect on it, with question prompts like ...

What do you notice about your history? 

What doesn't your history tell you?
How can you use this information?

Using the following process the students reflected and shared ...

  • Students login to the online catalog and access their history
  • Give them time to silently review their history and record their observations on sticky notes
  • Allow them to share their observations in a small group
  • Have each group report out to the whole class
  • Repeat these steps for observations, questions and next steps
  • Create a Blog entry reflecting on the learning
The student reflections on their own reading history were quite profound and led to some interesting discussion in the class and in our own learning environment.

The session participants then had an opportunity to examine the reading logs of two students and were asked to make comments on what we observed. The link to the responses are on padlet .
Kate's message was that we can use the data we have to help students see the journey they have been on, and move forward to become lifelong readers.

I then attended Candace & Katie Day's presentation on "Considering Libguides" where they showed us different ways that libraries across the region and beyond are using Libguides.
That evening a few of us headed into the Shilin night markets and had a grand time. Stay tuned for day 2. The storified tweets can be found here - Earcos Librarian @ TAS
The senior school student has similar behaviours the world over.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

A photographic tale of 3 libraries

The month of October has been busy with travel, visiting schools and preparing workshops, hence the quiet blog but, so much learning and connecting has taken place in that time.

Todays post will be about sharing some of the great things I have seen in a number of libraries in my travels, all are IB schools.

First up - The Canadian International School of Singapore. A beautiful space that has nooks and crannies and large places all in the same very large room. Upstairs is the senior library, and downstairs the junior. The space and programme on this campus is managed by Annie Pyers with Lisa Miller. Captions are under the photos.

Student work is a feature of the library, all presented in a very professional way. The large Malaysian style throne chair on the top right sat in a complex shaped corner, but filled it beautifully ready for some partner reading. Bottom right photo shows the large classroom space in the senior library.

I loved the used of wicker baskets through out the library. It gave a lovely feel to the ambience. They are used as part of the limited use of plastic across the school to reduce exposure to toxins

These globes were just sitting on a shelf waiting to be looked at. I particularly liked the black one, very slick. The audio book stand was filled with Playaways within easy reach and eyesight of the teens they are serving.

The library is filled with beautiful orchids, which are lovingly looked after and again give the library an aura of peaceful and calm to the space. There was also use of portable signage to designate quiet spaces, which allowed for different places to be the quiet zones as the need arose.

The displays in the library range from the temporary seasonal displays, the beautifully elegant glass engraved signage and the digital display all show that making use of different formats caters for different needs.

The library provided a variety of seating for different purposes with different colours, shapes and heights. It all blended beautifully.


The International School of Singapore is moving campus soon, but that did not stop them purchasing some new furniture and shelving. The primary and middle library is a small space, about the size of two classrooms.

 The picture books have the shelving units on the left which were custom made to ensure all titles were front facing. The old shelving along the window are not on wheels, but all the new shelving is on wheels as can be seen in the bottom photograph.

 Some of the new seating that Grahame purchased for the space, making use of the narrow window/ walkway space as well. 

The new tables from Furnware (in NZ) that were purchased. The round table flips to make room for larger groups, or to be used somewhere else in the library or school.


The last library to be featured is at the Prem Tinsulanonda International School, in Chiang Mai, Thailand.

One of the first things you see when you enter the library is this large  decorated bamboo cage which has been constructed to create a listening centre with cushions, books and audio books on CD with a multi listening post. It is apparently very popular.

 They also had some community projects / dynamic pin boards under construction. The one on the left was featured on a very long wall, and every person on the school community drew a self portrait to be included on the board. The colourful board featured on the right was a board featuring quotes and messages about what the students could say to people who were bullying them or others. It was student contributed and made for some good reading.

The rickshaw on the left was recently donated and restored to its former glory, it is now in the cooler months an outdoor  reading nook for a few children at a time. The chairs in the library are getting a face lift and the community are being asked for their opinion how comfortable the prototype is. The picture on the bottom right shows a magazine book rack which I had not seen before, and seemed to be quite effective in displaying the contents without taking up much space.

Three very different libraries with dedicated staff all trying their best to cater to for their school community needs. Thank you to Annie and Lisa, Grahame and Krissy for taking the time to show me around their libraries  and talk to me about what they have been doing.

Monday, October 5, 2015

School Libraries in Pakistan

Last week I posted about my general perception of Pakistan after my visit there, this week I want to focus on what I learned about the status of school libraries and librarians in Pakistan from the people I was working with.

Firstly, it is quite rare for school librarians to have any training in librarianship. From my brief research I found that there were only two universities in Pakistan that offered such courses. The University of Karachi and the University of the Punjab. There is also a 6 month course at the  Alama Iqbal Open University. It appears there are about 200 spots a year in offered in total, and, of course the cost would be something that needs to be considered by possible applicants and if the cost is offset by increased future earnings.

This situation leads to school librarians not really knowing what they are doing with regard to systems, policies & procedures and then having to work out their own based on what they already know, what they can find out, or what the school dictates. This sometimes leads to some organisational elements being over complicated (or insufficient) such as processes including cataloguing and shelving.  Many of the schools are for profit schools, so books are treated as assets and usually cannot be weeded without a struggle. Collection development can be based on 'reading practice' style books and resources, with limited wider leisure reading of good literature. In school systems with large numbers of schools, the collection purchasing could be done by someone in a main office, with no input from the school librarians, and the budget could also be managed by the main office, again with little input from the individual school librarians. 

Most school libraries do not use an automated library system, and many not have any system to allow students to search the resources in any capacity (not even a card catalogue). Browsing the shelves is the only method to know what is in the library (or going through the accession records). Pakistan suffers from regular daily power outages even in the cities, so not being reliant on computers maybe a good thing, and in places the internet is very inconsistent. The physical space of the school library tends to be very traditional based on the old British model, and what has always been done.

The procuring of books from other countries can be difficult due to the cost of both the books and shipping, (some vendors will not ship to Pakistan and if they do, it is very expensive), possible censorship by the school governance, and some books disappearing from the boxes on route. There have been instances of customs not releasing books until the appropriate 'tax' is payed. Local publishing in Pakistan is limited, even in the Urdu language. The cost of imported books is the same price as the retail price in the USA - ie $10 -$20+ USD per title, but when parents are paying between $100 - $300USD a month for school fees, the percentage of spending on books to create a decent library collection is very high at these prices. The cost of authentic titles and the lack of local publishing has led to a lucrative trade in pirated photocopied books, which are a fraction of the cost of the original and tend to be what school collections are based on.

With these limitations for physical books, many school librarians are looking to supplement their collections with e-resources, but again the costs are prohibitive for e-books and the supporting platforms. The distribution rights for Pakistan are also limited due to the high piracy rate in the country. Platforms such as Project Gutenberg, and Google Books have recently provided Pakistan with far greater opportunities than physical books have.  The well known and established online databases are also very expensive for even the richest private schools in Pakistan.  There is also the issue of slow internet access and power outages that again limits access, however, many people have a smartphone with 3G access. 

The status in government schools is even more grim, and it is recognised as being a problem - this quote from the Pakistan Libraries project.
"Happily, a majority of middle and high schools under control of the Pakistani Ministry of Education do have some sort of library. However, these libraries are often not effectively used to enhancing education and broaden students’ frame of reference. Most of these libraries contain old and outdated collections, and the librarians are not well trained to manage the libraries or to develop reading habits in students and teachers. Furthermore, there are generally no internet or computer facilities in middle and high schools to provide access to online resources and knowledge exchange activities. PLP plans to upgrade these libraries curricula, train librarians, and establish IT facilities to strengthen libraries in middle and high schools in rural Pakistan."  
This page from an 2012 IFLA report "Libraries in the early 21st century, volume 2: An international perspective" Libraries and Impact of Information and communication developments in Pakistan" by Kanwal Ameen outline some of the issues surrounding school libraries in Pakistan. He states that in the 1990's out of 171,000 schools, 481 had libraries, and only 30 of these had librarians. The National Education policy (1998-2010) targeted school libraries as a focus, but according to the report, not much has happened for a variety of reasons.

The internet is not censored by Pakistani authorities, only Youtube has  been blocked for the past 3 years due to a disagreement between Google and the Pakistan government over blasphemous videos that are available on the site. There is a  movement afoot in an effort to lift this ban. 

There is also some perception that the school library is just a store house for resources, and the school librarian is there just to take care of the books, this too is based on an old British model and hasn't changed very much due to the limitations of training   There are some great programs happening such as the Teachers and Children's Literature Festival held annually. There are also special projects such as the Pakistan Libraries Project working with government schools and Pakistani Academics writing about it (Revisioning School Libraries as Learning Hubs by Nooruddin Merchant. 
Also see this article by Rubina Bhatti on the historical context.)

At the three day IB Librarian Continuum workshop I led we started with the participants designing their perfect library. I use this activity as a diagnostic tool to see where the participants are in terms of thinking about the library.  Nearly all of the plans focused on the physical 'plan' of their library which supports what is stated by Kanwal Ameen, that the libraries are collection focused rather than user focused. I am glad to say that after three days of workshopping, and then re-evaluating what their plans were at the beginning there were significant shifts in thinking with a real sense of motivation to start right away.

I asked the participants if they would like to contribute to this post to tell the world what they are doing in their school libraries from what they learned in the workshop ... this is from Hasina.

"The school I joined has just started the IBDP program.  I have a small Library and only 10 IB1 students so far. I found though the students who were enrolled in IBDP program had no clue how to use a Library. Not one of them knew what a Library Catalogue was or any idea of shelf arrangement.

"I gave a Library Orientation workshop to the IB students and some teachers also attended. The students had the old idea of a room full of books. We talked about the changing role of Libraries - the nature of a Library program today in a school setting, the role of a Teacher Librarian in a School Library and making effective connections with, and use of the Library and Librarian. I touched on Information Literacy and we broke them into the skills necessary to become quote “effective users of information". We also talked about Library citizenship.

This has led to the following - the students are designing a layout of the Library.  Leaving the fixed fixtures and furniture in place I gave them freedom to plan out their library into areas which came out of our discussion.  For example casual area, group work area, audio visual access etc. We shall have 2 sets of design by the 8th of October.  The layout of the Library will follow the best of the two.
Then they will help me make the signage and we will discuss what to adorn the walls with. This will give them owner ship and I am sure the Library usage will increase.

The second task the students are going to do is form Library Rules Regulations and Procedures. These we will share with the management and barring the non-negotiable ones, according to school policies, we shall adopt these rules and regulations for our IB Library. Meanwhile I have asked for 4-6 slots in the next couple of months to teach the children the basics of location of resources, reading the shelves and a brief introduction to DDC.

I have already arranged for a presentation about Plagiarism by an outside expert and will carry it through together with the Extended essay coordinator to teach them Academic Honesty, research and writing skills and use of Turnitin.

The next on agenda is teaching the students access to e-resources and citation.

Thanks to Dianne I gained fresh perspectives and the will to start building. I hope to have a good library program in place by the end of my tenure.

Exciting stuff Hasina. It is great to see you have taken on a new role with the support from your administration, teachers and students. You are making a difference.

The most sustainable way for Pakistan to move forward in all respects is through education and improving literacy throughout the nation. Research has shown that libraries with qualified staff play an important role in improving literacy in young people, however Pakistan faces some unique challenges to succeed in this area. I am thankful I had the opportunity to work with enthusiastic and eager school librarians wanting to make a difference in their schools and with the young people they work with, and am looking forward to further opportunities to do so.