Friday, April 4, 2008

Blogs for PD & Web 2.0

Blogs and blogging for professional development can be engaging, thought-provoking and educational. A Blog is one of the Web 2.0 tools that focuses on building information from the bottom up. Sharing thoughts through self publishing and harnessing the collective intelligence of all users to generate information and solve problems, creates huge changes in how educators and students receive and respond to information. (The Next Wave Now: Web2.0 – 2007)

Brian Kenney in You 2.0 (2007) discusses the web and its influence on school libraries saying that,"The new Web is a very different thing," writes Lev Grossman in Time . It's a tool for bringing together the small contributions of millions of people and making them matter. It is a revolution, and one that challenges librarians more than nearly any other profession. It's a revolution that we've been documenting in our pages and podcasts, calling it "School Library 2.0" to underscore the connection between this social and informational shift and the school library program.

He goes on to list the various Web 2.0 tools that we can access such as blogs and wikis. Flickr and YouTube. RSS feeds. Social bookmarking. LibraryThing. MySpace and Facebook. Blogger and and Digg and Technorati. Kenney then discusses,why this revolution is a challenge to librarians, because today, it's through these tools that information is published, shared, and evaluated. This is where information seeking takes place. It's on the Web, in the interaction between "established" media and "user-created" media, that our culture's conversations are taking place.

According to Kenney, now it's all changed. We still need to read our professional publications (in some format or other) and keep current with our users' lives. But we also need to be active participants in the new Web, specifically blogging with its opportunities for community and collaboration. (School Library Journal - Jan.2007)

Accessing various educational blogs and the actual process of blogging for professional development is how we will keep informed of the latest trends and developments in teacher librarianship. Blogging also enables us to share and reach out to our colleagues with innovative ideas and questions.

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