Back to School #TLElem Chat August 5th

Calling all elementary librarians to join a Live Twitter Chat on Monday, August 5, 9:00 pm EST!

Our topic is Back To School, and we want to hear your best ideas for getting the new year off to a good start!

Our chat will focus on:

  • making your library a dynamic and inviting place to visit
  • preparing for Back to School night
  • student orientation and beginning-of-the-year lesson plans
  • ways you can support teachers and administrators as they begin the new year
  • anything else you want to discuss!

Newbies are always welcome at our chats; be sure to introduce yourself and make some new friends!  Those of you who are experienced chatters know that Twitter is all about SHOW and tell, so I expect you to have your photos and web links ready to share!

Remember to use the hashtag #tlelem for your tweets.  I have registered this hashtag at Twubs in the hopes that it will make it easier for participants to follow the chat, and to archive the tweets.  If you have never used Twubs, you may want to take a look at it ahead of time.

See you Monday!


p.s.  You can find archives of this and all our past chats at the TLElem Wiki.


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#TLElem Chat Leaves Me Breathless!


The tweets were flying thick and fast last night at the #TLElem Twitter Chat!  Between trying to read, reply, locate sites, and send tweets myself I was exhausted (but exhilerated!) by the end of the chat!

The focus of our discussion was supposed to be Library Centers, but in addition to that we bird-walked through poetry, library pets, funding resources for libraries, book promotion, and much more before it was all said and done.

I’ll be adding all those interesting and innovative ideas for centers to my newly-created Library Centers wiki this week, so keep checking it for TL-tested ways to add a little independent student learning to your library!

Did you miss the chat?  You should:

  • Take a look at the archive of last night’s tweets, hosted at the TLElem Wiki.  (Thanks to @cktechtl for getting it up so quickly!)
  • Follow #TLElem on Twitter and become a part of a knowledgeable, enthusiastic, generous, hard-working, creative PLN!
  • Join us for our next #TLElem chat on Monday, April 15, 9:00 pm EST, and spread the word to your friends and colleagues
  • Add your suggestions for future chat topics to the TLElem Brainstorm
  • Share a little about the centers you’re using in your Library by leaving a comment here or tweeting #TLElem to me @LibraryLoriJune

Thanks again to everyone who participated last night!  If only all professional development was this much fun!


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TLElem Twitter Chat Tonight: Library Centers



Please join us for our #TLElem Chat tonight
on Twitter as we discuss Library Centers!

Monday, March 18, 9:00 pm EST

Be ready to share your favorite ideas, photos, inspiration sites, printables, Pinterest boards, etc. as we discuss ways to incorporate different types of centers in the library!  Use the hashtag #tlelem for your tweets.

Did you miss our first #TLElem chat?  View the archived tweets (over 500 of them!) at the TLElem Wiki.


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Netvibes to the Rescue!

I know lots of folks are upset about losing Google Reader as a resource for managing their RSS feeds.  If you’re looking for a replacement, you might want to consider using Netvibes.  This free service has been described as a personalized start page, and it helps you organize all your web content in one place.

I’ve been using it for about four years, mainly to manage my blog feeds, but it can do so much more.  Because Netvibes allows you to add widgets and html coding to your pages, you can embed text, photos, videos, live websites and/or thumbnail links, Flickr streams, etc.  I can check the weather, check things off my To-Do list, and check my blog stats using a Google Analytics module.  I can even read and send Tweets via my Twitter widget at school, where Twitter is blocked.  (Shhhh, don’t tell anyone!)

Take a look at my public page (Keeping An Eye On…) to get an idea of how it works.  If your district blocks shortened links like mine does, you can click here instead.

I also use Netvibes to archive the websites I’ve shared as part of my WWW program, which I wrote about in a previous blog post.  WWW stands for Weekly Wednesday Website, and I used it in the past to share a new site each week with my faculty.  (Now that I have a flexible schedule, I can work more closely with teachers to recommend sites and tools one on one, so I no longer send out those blanket weekly emails.  I do still add sites to the Netvibes archive, though, for the convenience of my teachers.)

If you think you’d like to make the switch from Google Reader to Netvibes, they’re making it easy for you.  From the Netvibes blog:

As you may have heard, Google has decided to shut down its Reader service on July the 1st. Good news: you don’t need to look for an alternative, Netvibes is the perfect home for all your RSS feeds, and more. Judging by the increase in traffic since the announcement, it’s safe to say that most of you have already make the move, and we’re grateful for that. And if you haven’t done it yet, here’s how you can easily join our community.

It goes on to provide step-by-step instructions for importing your feeds from other services so that you won’t have to start over from scratch.  Apparently a lot of people are making the switch, because there’s a banner across the top of the site today that reads: If you’re experiencing slowdowns or feed latency, please bear with us as we work hard to handle a huge amount of new users. Thank you for your patience.

Whether you choose to use Netvibes or another service, I wish you all good luck on finding a new RSS manager!


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#TLElem Off to a Great Start!

500 tweets in one hour!

I’m so glad I saw Joyce Valenza’s Feb 16 blog post at Neverending Search titled #TLELEM: Starting a New Conversation.  In it she explains that the graduate course she’s currently teaching is made up of mainly elementary education students, and they suggested the #TLElem hashtag as a way to connect with other Twitter users who serve the elementary population.

The first #TLElem Live Chat was scheduled for Feb 19, and I think it succeeded beyond anyone’s wildest dreams!  Many thanks to Laurren Kresge (@librarianmissk) and Caitlin Kordek (@cktechtl), the students who facilitated the discussion and who have archived the tweets here.  And no, that was not a misprint in the title sentence!



If you are working at the elementary level and you Tweet, I hope you’ll leave a comment with your Twitter handle so that I can start following you.  You can follow me @LibraryLoriJune


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Twitter Book Club Tonight

Tonight is the Sharp-Schu Book Club chat on Twitter, featuring four early reader books:

What do you need to know to join in?

  • The chat is from 8:00-9:00 EST
  • use #SharpSchu
  • new chatters are always welcome!


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My One Month Anniversary on Twitter

As of today, I have officially been using Twitter for one month!

I sent my first tweet to school library guru @gwynethjones (aka The Daring Librarian) on Sept 10 to thank her for so generously sharing with her personal learning network (PLN).  It was actually two and a half weeks later before I sent my second tweet, because for some reason I felt very intimidated about tweeting, as though I didn’t have anything important enough to share.  But once I got over my shyness it didn’t take long to get the hang of using Twitter, and so far in the past eleven days I have:


  • participated in a chat about book talking led by Donalyn Miller @DonalynBooks (among others) using the hashtag #titletalk
  • promoted the @Jumpstartkids #ReadfortheRecord campaign
  • shared pictures of myself dressed as Ladybug Girl visiting classrooms to read aloud
  • participated in a picture book discussion led by @ColbySharp and @MrSchuReads using the hashtag #SharpSchu
  • connected with two fantastic authors, @AmeDyckman (who has a great sense of humor) and @ShanaCorey (who I’ve decided is going to be the subject of a future 5th grade author study at my school)
  • created an account at Bitly to shorten the URLs I’m tweeting, and to track the clicks on my tweet links
  • retweeted a tweet to enter a book giveaway AND WON!  (The book is The Cloak Society by @JerameyKraatz and sounds like something that will just fly off my shelves – after I read it first, of course, the minute it arrives!)
  • followed Mo Willems@The_Pigeon and Professor Severus Snape @_Snape_ who are both hilarious
  • collected 23 followers of my own, which I did not expect to happen in such a short time (you can follow me @LibraryLoriJune)

Quite a crash course in using Twitter, eh?  I’ve known for quite some time that Twitter could be a valuable networking tool, but I resisted signing up because I knew that a) it would be another online presence that would require maintenance to keep it updated, and b) I was afraid I might become addicted to it since I do tend to develop obsessions about things.  (Do you think I called that one right?!?)  But until I started using it myself, I didn’t realize just how powerful and versatile it could be.

Just like any other Web 2.0 tool, Twitter is what you make it.  Please consider leaving a comment to share what you find most valuable about Twitter, and if you aren’t using it yet maybe this post will convince you to give it a try!


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