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by Dan Bostrom (staff) on Tue, Oct 7, 2014 at 08:31 am

Online Doc #alscchat Transcript - May 8, 2014

by Amy Graves on Thu, May 15, 2014 at 02:42 pm

ALSC hosted its monthly Twitter chat on May 8, 2014. The topic was diversity. A transcript of the chat is attached. (It's not beautiful, but free Twitter transcript services are impossible to find!)

Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Wrap Up and Survey!

by Melissa Depper on Tue, Apr 8, 2014 at 09:10 pm

Hey everyone,

We have come to the end of the Screen Time Book Club! Thanks so much for reading along with us and for thinking and commenting. Andrea and I really enjoyed working through the book again and being intentional about approaching the issues in the book with library service in mind. We hope it was valuable for you, too, whether you read one post or read them all!

We did not receive any RSVPs for our scheduled Hangout with Lisa Guernsey, but we thank Lisa for her willingness to make room in her busy schedule to chat and for her support of this book club. 

Hey everyone,

We have come to the end of the Screen Time Book Club! Thanks so much for reading along with us and for thinking and commenting. Andrea and I really enjoyed working through the book again and being intentional about approaching the issues in the book with library service in mind. We hope it was valuable for you, too, whether you read one post or read them all!

We did not receive any RSVPs for our scheduled Hangout with Lisa Guernsey, but we thank Lisa for her willingness to make room in her busy schedule to chat and for her support of this book club. 

This was a new project for the ALSC Children & Technology Committee and we would love to hear some feedback to help us plan for the future. Please help us out by taking a quick reader survey. This should take 5 minutes; there are 9 multiple choice and 2 short answer questions. Thanks very much!

Screen Time Book Club Reader Survey

--Melissa and Andrea

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Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Chapter 12

by Melissa Depper on Thu, Apr 3, 2014 at 12:39 pm

YIKES, I am so sorry! I posted this last Book Club post in the Children & Tech Committee space on Tuesday and NOT in the Interest Group space. I apologize!

Here's this week's question:

All right! Here we are at the last week of book club discussions! Thank you all so much for following along.

YIKES, I am so sorry! I posted this last Book Club post in the Children & Tech Committee space on Tuesday and NOT in the Interest Group space. I apologize!

Here's this week's question:

All right! Here we are at the last week of book club discussions! Thank you all so much for following along.

The last chapter we chose to look at together is Chapter 12: How Do Real Families Make Smart Media Choices? Lisa shares some of the strategies used by the families she interviewed, in terms of how they set time limits, decide when to turn the TV on (or share tablet time), paying attention to and limiting certain media content, steering around commericials & consumerism, where they put screens in the home, and turning off background TV.

There are a lot of real-world strategies out there and a lot of real-world concerns, both from parents and caregivers and librarians--you can see them in the comments of our discussions over the last month or so. You can see them in Betsy Bird's post this week: iPad Use and Babies: Throwing a Wrench in the Works.

So my last question for us is simple: How do librarians help families make smart media choices? We've actually been talking about this all along, but I want to focus on it again. What do YOU say about media in your conversations with families? How does YOUR library position itself as a source of reliable information? How proactive are you--very or not at all--in bringing up media decisions with the families in your community?

Are there any strategies that have helped you as you embrace--either enthusiastically or reluctantly--this role as expert? What tech and media-based programs and services have been the most popular with your families?

Let us know!

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Discussion Screen Time Book Club Google Hangout with author Lisa Guernsey

by Melissa Depper on Thu, Apr 3, 2014 at 12:44 pm

You guys, this is the OTHER post I mistakenly put up in the Children & Tech Committee space instead of in the Interest Group:

Hi all! Here's the last piece for the Book Club. Lisa Guernsey, the author of our book, has agreed to join us for a Google Hangout conversation next week. The Hangout is scheduled for April 8, 8PM EST; next we just need to gauge interest.

You guys, this is the OTHER post I mistakenly put up in the Children & Tech Committee space instead of in the Interest Group:

Hi all! Here's the last piece for the Book Club. Lisa Guernsey, the author of our book, has agreed to join us for a Google Hangout conversation next week. The Hangout is scheduled for April 8, 8PM EST; next we just need to gauge interest.

If you would like to participate, please leave a comment to this post & let us know. If there is more interest than seats we will randomly select names. By commenting, you're saying that you will attend if chosen, that you've got a question or two for Lisa up your sleeve, and that you have the tech setup to attend. (We really want this to be worth Lisa's valuable time and want to make sure we have firm commitments from people who are ready to participate!)

If you don't care to comment publicly, you may send me an email at mdepper@ald.lib.co.us.

Thanks!

Hi all! Here's the last piece for the Book Club. Lisa Guernsey, the author of our book, has agreed to join us for a Google Hangout conversation next week. The Hangout is scheduled for April 8, 8PM EST; next we just need to gauge interest.

If you would like to participate, please leave a comment to this post & let us know. If there is more interest than seats we will randomly select names. By commenting, you're saying that you will attend if chosen, that you've got a question or two for Lisa up your sleeve, and that you have the tech setup to attend. (We really want this to be worth Lisa's valuable time and want to make sure we have firm commitments from people who are ready to participate!)

If you don't care to comment publicly, you may send me an email at mdepper@ald.lib.co.us.

Thanks!

- See more at: http://connect.ala.org/node/220673#sthash.7cv4EyVo.dpuf

Hi all! Here's the last piece for the Book Club. Lisa Guernsey, the author of our book, has agreed to join us for a Google Hangout conversation next week. The Hangout is scheduled for April 8, 8PM EST; next we just need to gauge interest.

If you would like to participate, please leave a comment to this post & let us know. If there is more interest than seats we will randomly select names. By commenting, you're saying that you will attend if chosen, that you've got a question or two for Lisa up your sleeve, and that you have the tech setup to attend. (We really want this to be worth Lisa's valuable time and want to make sure we have firm commitments from people who are ready to participate!)

If you don't care to comment publicly, you may send me an email at mdepper@ald.lib.co.us.

Thanks!

- See more at: http://connect.ala.org/node/220673#sthash.nDx9GJ6k.dpuf

Hi all! Here's the last piece for the Book Club. Lisa Guernsey, the author of our book, has agreed to join us for a Google Hangout conversation next week. The Hangout is scheduled for April 8, 8PM EST; next we just need to gauge interest.

If you would like to participate, please leave a comment to this post & let us know. If there is more interest than seats we will randomly select names. By commenting, you're saying that you will attend if chosen, that you've got a question or two for Lisa up your sleeve, and that you have the tech setup to attend. (We really want this to be worth Lisa's valuable time and want to make sure we have firm commitments from people who are ready to participate!)

If you don't care to comment publicly, you may send me an email at mdepper@ald.lib.co.us.

Thanks!

- See more at: http://connect.ala.org/node/220673#sthash.nDx9GJ6k.dpuf

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Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Chapters 7 & 8

by Melissa Depper on Tue, Mar 18, 2014 at 12:33 pm

Thanks everyone! We are rolling through the book! We are getting solid numbers of views on the discussions each week and are happy so many people are reading and thinking along with us. Thanks especially to those of you who have commented on the questions. We would love to encourage everyone again to jump in and add your two cents! None of us are "experts" here, we are just sitting down with the nitty gritty of our daily library lives and thinking through some ideas. We would love to hear what is crossing your mind as you read or re-read these chapters.

Thanks everyone! We are rolling through the book! We are getting solid numbers of views on the discussions each week and are happy so many people are reading and thinking along with us. Thanks especially to those of you who have commented on the questions. We would love to encourage everyone again to jump in and add your two cents! None of us are "experts" here, we are just sitting down with the nitty gritty of our daily library lives and thinking through some ideas. We would love to hear what is crossing your mind as you read or re-read these chapters.

This week we are looking at Chapters 7 & 8: Could the Right DVD Teach My Child to Speak, or Better Yet, Become Bilingual? and Can Electronic Media Enrich My Child's Vocabulary?

In Chapter 7 Lisa looks at a case study of a hearing boy raised by deaf parents who mistakenly thought the best language strategy was to not use sign language, and as a result, the language he did learn was largely mediated by TV shows, and of course, was problematic. Lisa writes, "Developmental psychologists and cognitive scientists are starting to discover just how much a person requires real, person-to-person contact to learn language." She talks about a parent who was learning language-prompting techniques to use with her toddler from an educational DVD, and how the impact of that is not from the child watching the DVD, but from the *mom* learning and then interacting in new ways with her child.

This chapter was written in 2007, well before our current touch screen era. In the epilogue, added to the 2012 paperback, Lisa talks about a study that showed that of children who watched a live scenario, a screen scenario, and an interactive screen scenario, the children who saw the live and interactive screen episodes were most able to solve a related puzzle, indicating that touch screen experiences have different learning consequences than passive viewing experiences. I'm curious about what language learning might be like as we continue into the touch screen era. Will children such as the hearing boy in the case study have different opportunities than before? We're already seeing how kids with special needs are able to communicate in revolutionary ways with touch screen devices. Have you seen any research or studies that address interactivity in language learning apps? Are you using touch screens with special needs children in your libraries?

Also, the parents learning parenting strategies from DVDs made me think of storytime. (Yes, pretty much everything makes me think of storytime!) There's a lot of excitement in many libraries about our ability to demo age-appropriate apps in storytimes or preschool tech programs and create just this type of learning opportunity for the parents. If you have shared apps in storytime, do you also share a "tech message" or a reason you like the app you are showcasing? If so, what is the response from your adults? Are they interested? Are they grateful? Do they tune it out? How does this mirror or not any experience you have sharing early literacy messages as a part of storytimes and preschool programs?

In Chapter 8 Lisa talks about research around how and if children do add to their vocabularies by watching videos. At the end of the chapter, she writes, "Kremar and Grela's study...spotlighted two critical factors in using media to expose children to new vocabulary words. First, the media design must emulate the way language is used. The closer the product comes to simulating the way a good nursery school teachers or attentive parents talks to a young child, the better. Linear, straightforward story lines will help. Language should be simple. New words should be repeated often and used explicitly as teaching moments, with their meaning described or displayed on the screen."  I think it's clear that the best vocabulary learning comes from direct engagement and conversation with an adult, but again, this makes me curious about apps. What apps do you know meet these criteria? Have you used any of them in storytime?

Ack, this is getting really long and I still want to ask if anyone has had experience with the LENA device?  It is designed to record conversations between a caregiver and a toddler, then uses the data to help the caregivers boost their language interactions with their child. The city of Providence is in the middle of a huge project using it.

PS: I have utterly no experience in being bilingual and have very little experience working with bilingual or ESL families. Does anyone with this strength want to talk about second language learning and digital experiences?

OK Melissa is finally over and out!!! :) Your turn!

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Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Chapter 10

by Andrea Vernola on Tue, Mar 25, 2014 at 08:16 pm

Thank you for joining us again for Chapter 10 of Screen Time. I'm enjoying thinking about this book a little deeper and revisiting some research, I had forgotten about since my first reading. Lots of you are viewing but not commenting and that's totally fine, of course. But I do want to encourage anyone who wants to share some thoughts about the issues raised in the book or the research presented or anything you'd like to go ahead and do so. You do not have to respond directly to anything we've said. You can share anything you like!

Thank you for joining us again for Chapter 10 of Screen Time. I'm enjoying thinking about this book a little deeper and revisiting some research, I had forgotten about since my first reading. Lots of you are viewing but not commenting and that's totally fine, of course. But I do want to encourage anyone who wants to share some thoughts about the issues raised in the book or the research presented or anything you'd like to go ahead and do so. You do not have to respond directly to anything we've said. You can share anything you like! We'd love to hear from more great librarian brains here. We all have something to learn from others and something we can teach.

Thanks for joining us, in any case! We are glad to have you here!

So Chapter 10...

I just find this book so interesting. The main question in this chapter asks if "interactive media is worthwhile--or at least better than TV?" And I'm not really sure there's a definitive answer found in the chapter. As Lisa says, elsewhere in the book and at the beginning of Chapter 10, it's all about context, content, and the individual child. So my question now is how am I considering those things with my own child and/or children I work with at the library. Maybe some interactive media is worthwhile but the context, content, and the child must be carefully considered. So I'm wondering if anyone has an example of how they've considered those 3 c's and decided either for or against particular media? I like Lisa's examples of how she makes choices with her own daughters but I'm curious what others are thinking too. How do we apply this message of Context, Content, and Child practically?

Also one line in particular really stood out to me in Chapter 10 as it relates to learning in general and storytime and programming in specific. Regarding software for kids, Lisa says, "they are usually programmed to guide children down particular paths, not to set them loose" (p. 204). That line is just sticking with me and making me think about more than just software but also the experiences we design for children as librarians. I'm reminded again how important play and experimentation and imagination are to a child's learning experience. I did not need to be convinced of this but it's always nice to see it from another angle. I am ffreshly inspired to "let kids loose" in storytime and other programs. To provide interaction and some ideas for where we will go together and what we will talk about but to let them do the learning at their own pace.

Maybe that was slightly off-topic but I'll see if I can circle it back to screen media. The research in this chapter shows that with interactive media as with all experiences, children learn the most when they direct their own progress. This isn't a surprise to those of us who work with children regularly. But I think it could be a helpful tip for evaluating media for it's potential learning benefits. One criteria should be: "How much of the experience is self-directed?" Again, considering context, content, and child....will this interactive content really benefit this child in this context? Would a different activity be a better choice? 

Hope my rambling makes at least some sense. Thanks again for joining us. As always feel free to comment on anything from this chapter or other resources that relate. We're all just learning and thinking together here. 

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Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Chapter 6

by Melissa Depper on Tue, Mar 11, 2014 at 08:14 pm

Hi all! Thanks for another great week here in the book club! This week's chapter is #6, What Is Educational About "Educational" TV? We are skipping about a bit but we think this chapter builds nicely on our discussion from last week.

Hi all! Thanks for another great week here in the book club! This week's chapter is #6, What Is Educational About "Educational" TV? We are skipping about a bit but we think this chapter builds nicely on our discussion from last week.

After reviewing research about shows like Sesame Street, Blues Clues, and Barney, Lisa writes, "By now it's probably clear that to be educational, a preschool program should be tested with real children and tweaked accordingly, designed to get viewers to participate as social partners, and build to point children towards specific goals, like the ability to recognize letters, match sounds with instruments, or simply recognize the importance of physical exercise. It should be vetted by childhood experts to ensure it is developmentally appropriate for 2-, 3-, or 4-year-olds....Its stories should be linear and easy to follow. It should refrain from excessive cuts between scenes. The pace should be slow and steady. And if the money and will is there, research should be undertaken after a show goes on the air to find out if children are really learning from it." [p131 in the paperback]

So, my thoughts turned immediately to storytime. (Are you surprised?) Did anyone change or tweak their storytimes after reading this research about learning? A lot we already do. But can we do more? Should we? Does this have any impact on our "educational programming?" Should we increase our attempts to have children participate with us as partners in the storytime? Should we increase our focus on specific learning goals? (Of course ECRR comes to mind here.) Have we asked a local child development expert to observe a storytime and give advice? How could we do research on the impact of storytime to kindergarten and elementary school success? What do you think?

Another question--given these specific criteria for successful educational media, does anyone work at a library with separate collection development criteria for digital media v. print media? Separate collection development policies for children's materials v adult materials?

Melissa

PS: Also, what are YOU thinking after you read this chapter? Don't feel you have to stick with my questions! What's on your mind?

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Online Doc #alscchat - March 13, 2014

by Amy Graves on Sat, Mar 15, 2014 at 11:05 am

ALSC hosted its monthly Twitter chat on March 13, 2014. The topic was professional development. A transcript of the chat is linked below. Please join us for the next #alscchat on Thursday, April 10th at 9:00 PM Eastern.

http://storify.com/amygrav/alscchat-march-13-2014

Discussion Screen Time Book Club: Chapter 2-3

by Andrea Vernola on Tue, Mar 4, 2014 at 03:24 pm

Great discussion last week! Thanks to everyone who viewed and commented. This is really fun and also professionally beneficial! 

Great discussion last week! Thanks to everyone who viewed and commented. This is really fun and also professionally beneficial! 

I hadn't read the book before last fall when Melissa had the idea to host this book club. My initial thoughts were that the research is fascinating and that having this type of information makes me a better librarian and parent. I'm glad to be discussing it with you all now! Below, I posted a few thoughts and questions for discussion but please respond to whatever you feel like from the book. Don't feel like you have to answer my questions. These are just some thoughts to get us started. 

1. In Chapter 2, Lisa sums up the research by saying that the “zombie effect” just doesn’t exist for children older than 2 (p. 36), meaning that kids can be cognitively engaged while watching video whether or not they look like it. The “zombie effect” in children 2 and older is more likely “attention inertia”. But for babies, much more research needs to be done before we could conclusively say that babies are cognitively engaged while watching television. The Teletubbies study is particularly troubling, in my opinion, but I would agree with Lisa’s assessment that more research needs to be done. What did you think about this section? Does it have any bearing on our practice as librarians in selection or programming or another area?

2. In Chapter 3, Lisa discusses the question “Could my toddler learn from baby videos?” And her answer in my opinion, is “um maybe but there are lots of richer experiences they could be having”. All the research she dicusses is fascinating but the study I found most interesting was the one that showed toddlers learning faster via the in-person demonstration, rather than a video. What did you all think of this chapter?

3. These are the chapters with research on "what these videos are doing" --how does this relate or not relate to whether we worry or not about other media "is doing" that goes home with families? We all struggle with the 3rd grader who wants to read inappropriate YA, but do we worry what poorly written Dora books are doing to our children? Or what body image issues children are gleaning from the Barbie easy readers? Is it even our job to wonder what media “is doing” to children when it leaves the library? What about out of date nonfiction? How are these conversations similar or not similar to other conversations in our professional history about comic books, series fiction, or even fiction in general? 

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