“In the bright, buzzing room, there was an iPad, and a kid playing Doom, and a screensaver of a bird launching over the moon [Angry Birds]…”
So begins an excerpt from the book, Goodnight iPad, a parody of the book, Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown. While this modern day version offers smiles from the students, it’s an observation of where our world has advanced to via technology. As times have evolved, so has Jamestown Public Schools in providing current day opportunities and experiences so that students can compete and succeed as they enter the real world. The Technology Department generously provided iPads for Love students to use during their library time with Library Media Specialist, Jennie Vaughn.
The students were ecstatic to learn they would be utilizing the iPad as just one means of research this year. Currently, they are learning how to use the online catalogue, “Destiny,” and finding specific authors, titles or keywords. This is a valuable skill in order for students to feel confident walking into their middle school library or public library and be successful and independent in locating what they need. The students are quick studies on how to switch from landscape to portrait, enlarging text for easier reading, typing in their searches and flipping from screen to screen.
“I like using the iPad because it’s like a computer but I can find things on it easily,” said third grader Lebron Fisher. “Once I look up something, I can go directly to the place in the library where the book is located.”
Students’ journey with iPads is only in the beginning stages. Mrs. Vaughn plans to incorporate a variety of applications to complement the lessons and accommodate a variety of learning styles. The student’s enthusiasm for utilizing this equipment is showcased in their collegiate response toward learning. They are actively engaged; eager to complete their work correctly to showcase they can capably utilize the equipment, and demonstrate a more respectful attitude toward the use equipment that has been provided for them.
As Library Media Specialist for Love and Lincoln Schools, Mrs. Vaughn believes it is her job to infuse and rally as much enthusiasm for whatever tools the library has to offer to further children’s knowledge – books, globes, reference materials, computers, iPads, etc. It is all about balance and exposure to many different types of research tools.
Examples of other Love School library activities include: First grade’s comprehensive map/globe unit which includes singing songs about the oceans and continents, searching globes, reading books about animals from around the world, creating a pictorial map, placing an animal on the correct continent and using a map database to create a zoo map. Second graders complete a research unit on bats – reading both fiction and nonfiction, taking notes, organizing and editing to create a final paper. Third graders benefit by going into more in-depth research tools like the dictionary and thesaurus during their library time.
“The balance of providing valuable literature and effective technology is a pivotal role in our library media centers today,” said Mrs. Vaughn. “Building confidence in using these resource tools is vital in building the foundation towards increasing student’s success levels in all core curriculum areas.”