ISC staff have been supporting English teachers as Year 7s participated enthusiastically in Literature Circles. The students read a wide range of books; Titanic, The Green Bicycle, Northern Lights, Happiest Refugee, Diary of a Wimpy kid, A Little Piece of Ground, which covered wide-ranging issues from early Australia: refugees, women in Saudi Arabia, fantasy, Palestine, parent/child relationships, bullying. Students developed great insight into their books and there were some robust discussions. It was also lovely to hear from students that parents were also reading and discussing their books with them.
Educators such as Liz Kolb (Learning First, Technology Second: The Educator’s Guide to Designing Authentic Lessons) says technology should move beyond engaging students in learning and actually change the learning experience so that it is improved over traditional methods. Teacher Librarians have also been working with teachers to incorporate digital technologies into the curriculum. It is amazing how quickly students learn these new programs and adapt them for use in other subjects.
Year 7 History and Science students learnt how to use Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator to create posters, while Year 8 History students completed a project using ‘green screening’. Year 8 English students created Blog entries on the topic of Maralinga. Year 8 History students created medieval timelines with Excel scatter charts. The ISC holds a range of DLSR cameras and video cameras and has been assisting VCE media students.
Just a reminder that all students have access to Gippsland Grammar’s video platform Clickview. This can be accessed through their laptops or alternatively any computer by going to Clickview Online and using their student log ins and ID. Students can download programs to their laptop. Students have access to World Book Encyclopedia To access this students need to go through the school portal or they can log in from home. Passwords are on the Portal.
Audio book Platform Borrowbox
The ISC has made over 220 audio books available for students to either download on their laptops or devices. 124 have been added this year. Some of these are classic books, others are bestsellers and some are required textbook reading. Statistics are showing that students and staff are borrowing and listening eagerly: 475 loans and 131 reserves. The Harry Potter series is an absolute treat to listen to, as it is read by Stephen Fry, and not surprisingly has been borrowed 15 times this year! Other top books borrowed have been The Book Thief, Batavia, Jasper Jones and The Barefoot Investor. Students have commented that they know they should be reading more and this is making reading more accessible for them. Also bus travellers are making great use of their travelling time.
Members of the bookclub meet fortnightly to discuss and choose new books for the library. In August they will be attending the Melbourne Writers Festival. One of the highlights this year will be meeting first time author Jessica Townsend, of Nevermoor fame. Nevermoor took out many major literary awards and is being published in many countries.
Finally, as teacher-librarians we try to read as many YA (young adult) books as to recommend to students. This year I read my first Neil Gaiman book and became an instant fan. I would just like to share his very wise thoughts in this article I came across Why we read and What books do for the human experience. Please follow the link and read the whole article. In summary, he talks about the importance of not destroying a child’s love of reading, how reading is different from watching TV or a film, and the development of empathy in developing us as individuals.