Sunday, December 14, 2014

Sharing for learning


Late in November Katie Day and myself hosted a School Librarian Connection mini conference for 60+ school librarians across SE Asia. 

The lead up took quite a bit of planning and brainstorming via skype, emails and messages as Katie lives in Singapore and I live in Hong Kong. We took an informal survey some months before the event to see if people were interested, and if they were interested, what did they want to learn about?

We wanted this event to be specifically focused on 'Library stuff' as we found that many of the regional conferences focused on literacy, digital integration etc, and while these are all important parts of our role, we felt there was a real need to get back to the basics of our organisations and what we do to connect with students.

The five hot topics were identified  - Collection Management,  Digital resource Management, Supporting the curriculum, Visual Literacy, Research Skills.  People were invited to share their practice in short bursts of 5, 10 or 20 minutes in rapid fire with question time following. We had envisaged to have break out time to discuss the presentations in more detail, but that didn't quite work out and we should have worked harder on that. It was only 1.5 days of learning, and we could have made it longer, but through new experiences we learn what could have been better to make the next one even better. The feedback we received was that overall the participants felt it was an event worth attending, and many look forward to the next one.

Some of the tools to organise the conference were Skype, Google sites and docs, Paypal along with the event event management site Eventbrite which when combined, made our job much easier. Some of the presentations were in the form of a video from people who were unable to attend in person but still wanted to contribute. We even had a live skype in from Emily Johnson in Nanjing which worked very well.

We employed Maggie Appleton as our conference sketchnoter who did a fabulous job of capturing many of the presentations. Maggie is a young entrepreneur looking for more work as a sketchnoter and will even consider artist in residence for visual note taking. 

Softlink sponsored the event with an iPad giveaway with a nametag drawn out of a bowl by Maggie and, we had a fabulous lunch catered by a local restaurant called Casa.

If you would like to see what you missed, the presentations and accompanying sketchnotes can be found on this conference page. Of course, we can't capture the informal learning and networking that went on in break times and at the social functions, which are always an important function of any event like this. If you would like more information on any of the presentations, please contact the person directly if possible.

A big shout out and thank you to all who presented, attended and helped in some way. It was great meeting and working with you all and very rewarding experience overall. We look forward to seeing you at the next one in 2015!

A snapshot of some of the tweets from the weekend.

1 comment:

John Royce said...

Superb, Dianne,

Wish I'd been there. Congratulations to everyone who took part, thank you for sharing.