NYLA SSL: Make, Learn, Inspire

I was fortunate enough to attend the NYLA SSL Conference again this year as a Laura Wedge Scholarship winner.

It is an honor and a privilege to share and learn from my colleagues across the state. I always come away with more ideas than I can implement in a school year.  This year was no exception.  I had so much difficulty choosing which workshops to attend.

I was so impressed with the librarians at the Localvore WORKSHOP I attended.  Librarian Gail Brisson and special education teacher Melissa Bryant collaborated to create a monthly teacher luncheon totally grown, cooked and prepared by the self contained ISS students.  I was totally overwhelmed with the extent of the student involvement, from creating an entire vegetable garden with materials donated by Cornell University.

I also attended the Copyright and Fair Use workshop by Jim Belair, SLS Director and Anne Dalton, Esq.

They simplified the teaching exemption to the Fair Use Laws by reminding us 1: it must be tied into teaching, don’t show a movie without a lesson attached, 2: material must be from a legal source, don’t use something you found on Youtube. and 3:it must be shown for display and performance only, not a money making opportunity.  Keep a record of the questions that you presented with the film to show that you were using it for teaching purposes.  They shared 2 excellent resources created by ALA:  The Fair Use Evaluator:  which will help you justify the material you showed as fitting under the fair use exception  and the Digital Slider which clarifies when copyright laws expire.

Programming Made Easy was another workshop I attended which gave me some fast, practical ideas for programming in the library.  Some of the ideas explained and demonstrated were a Battle of the Books competition run by  different middle schools in the area and culminating in a competition between the schools, a family reading night, coffee house days and poetry slams.  I was excited by the comments of the librarians about how the students look forward to the events from year to year and begin requesting specific programs as early as September.

Some of the resources are now available online.   More are to be added shortly.

I thank NYLA SSL for giving me the opportunity to attend the conference through the Laura Wedge Scholarship Award.

I encourage all my fellow New York State school librarians to become members of NYLA.    The dues are very reasonable and open you up to exciting programs and resources.  It is very easy to remain isolated when you work in a specific school, but when you become part of a larger organization, you grow your network of professional contacts and are able to learn and grow exponentially.