Genrefying – Part 2 – Labels

So, in part one I talked about how I was writing the genre in every book cover.  This took forever!  Well, it felt like it.  It took more like 4 more days.

I noticed something during that time – there was no way that Sci Fi and Fantasy could stay together.  There are way too many in that category to stay together.  And, it was something I considered anyhow, since I could justify having them together, but kind of not.  So, like any sane librarian, I Googled to see what others did.  I found some who kept them together; others did not.  And I could see why – one belongs with magic and spells, witchcraft, etc.  The other belongs with dystopian, with futuristic, with robots.  So, I decided to separate them.  But this led to another problem – labels.

As I showed last post, I had my categories set.  I had actually already purchased my labels (this was an exciting adventure, but one for another post) so I was stuck.  Or so I thought.  I then realized my romance section wasn’t as large as some of the others, and so by not labeling the graphic novels, I had what I needed.  🙂  So, of course I had to switch around colors.  Now, romance/relationships are purple, Sci-Fi is blue, Action/Adventure is red.  It works.

So, back to genrefying books.  As I said it took me close to 4 days just to get every book labeled with its genre.  It definitely took time!  I recommend anyone who does this to be patient and have perseverance.  There were times I wanted to just stop.  But, I got through it.

By that point, my colored labels came in.  It was an exciting day when they came in.  And it was perfect, because at that point I was working on a collaborative project with one of the ELA teachers in my building.  She does speed book dating, which I’ll get to in another post.  So, getting books labeled with extremely important to do, and do quickly.  But, there was a slight hitch – the former librarian chose to relabel book series with the start of the series title instead of the authors name.  So, I have to go back and relabel the spine labels and then put the genre labels on.  So, more time.  With 4 days in, I”m about 75% done with the fiction labeling.  I mostly just have to print and relabel spine labels and then put the genre labels on.  But, it’s going!

Oh, my favorite thing.  My students have been watching me do this for now 2 weeks if they come in the library, which most do when they need something from the printer.  The look at me and one day, one asked, “Ms Becker, are you going to have to do this to all the books?!?” Yes, yes I am.  But the end result will be worth it.

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Genrefying – Part 1

So, I have decided to genrefy my new library.  Not only have I wanted to genrefy, but I feel that should help circulation.  I have seen many sites and articles stating that.  So, this is my story.

I’m starting with going through the collection and writing small on the inside cover what section it belongs to.  And I’m noticing some things.  First.  I don’t have a section for something that several books belong to, and they don’t seem to belong to something else… this is frustrating.  Had I realized, I would have ordered more/different labels.  So, I may be switching things around…. Second.  This takes a hecka long time!  I worked for around 2 hours today and got three shelves done.  That’s not including the new books I already got, plus the ones on my reshelving cart which I also got.  So, this will definitely take several more days, depending on interruptions.

Then, of course, there is the labeling itself. I just (excitedly) ordered my supplies for this.  Excited because I got to actually order myself, but that’s another story for another post.  But, yeah, they are ordered and hopefully won’t take too long to get here.  Hence why I’m doing the genre figuring out first.   I also have to relabel a hecka lot of books… another story though.

Overall, I’m excited for this project.  It is a labor of love.  But, as I talk it up more to people, I’m definitely getting some buy in.  We shall see…

 

My current genre list…

Proposal Writing

So, I did it.  I submitted my first solo conference proposal.  It isn’t the most elegant proposal ever, but I’m proud to say that I submitted it.  What’s the worst they can say?  No.

I’ve always said I want to be like amazing librarians like Nikki Robertson or Jen LaGarde.   I may or may not stalk their websites on and off, reading blog posts they post, and otherwise just wanting to be them.  Not because they lead glorious lives (maybe they do, I can’t truly say…) but because they stand up in front of people, possibly hundreds of people, and they don’t ever seem nervous, they don’t appear afraid.  They are out there, their words and ideas are being heard, and frankly I would like that too.

I have anxiety when it comes to speaking in front of my peers.  Now, this seems weird for a teacher who stands up and talks in front of students daily, but teaching and speaking in front of peers are really two different things.  I work with a group of high school color guard girls, and I’m perfectly fine.  But going in front of a crowd of librarians or tech people… shoot, that is just a lot.

Here’s the “but”.   But, I want to speak in front of people.  I want to be a google trainer someday.  And I know I have to start somewhere.  Everybody does, right?  This conference is a local conference – a google conference.  I figure, why the heck not start there?  So, I typed stuff up, submitted it, and yeah.   We will see.  I’m excited to just say, yes, I took that jump, and I submitted a proposal.  Go me.

My BreakoutEDU boxes

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Image from BreakoutEDU.com

So I have done BreakoutEDU boxes a couple times.  At edcamps, as well as during a half-day PD where a colleague brought in her set.  I love them.  If you have no idea about BreakoutEDU boxes, check out this video to get you started.

Anyhow, I love the boxes as I said, but I could not figure out how to justify paying $125 per box.  Sorry BreakoutEDU people, that’s a toughy for me.  Apparently they used to have an open source list to build your own, but it has since gone away (see link at the end).  So, in true Jennifer Lagarde style (who unbeknownst to me literally just wrote a blog post about this exact thing!) and  #MacGyverLibrarianship, I searched online, sourced different blogs, and made my own.


My BreakoutEDU Box.png

So, I should mention some things.  First, I love Menards.  Obviously.  Second, I bought several things on sale or for different prices that what I have found as of today.  That will definitely change prices if you choose to go a similar way to me.  Third, my goal was to create 5 boxes.  I have almost 4 sets (reason is because of that one darn 4 digit lock that has failed.)  I have a few things I need to add to make the 5th set, which may or may not cost a bit more overall.  But, I think I did well in doing a little bit of #MacGyverLibrarianship! I’m really looking forward to using these with my students, as soon as I get them to school.

What have your experiences with these boxes been like?  How about when students open them?  Did you add a treat or something other than just the sign?  I’d love to hear what you did!

Other blogs sourced (link goes directly to the post):

Mirror Into Teaching

Hey Mr. Stern

 

Book Review – Zeroboxer

zeroboxer

Image from Goodreads.com

Zeroboxer by Fonda Lee actually surprised me.  I wasn’t quite sure I would enjoy this book, but I really did.  I should mention, it is a Missouri Gateway Nominee from MASL for 2017-2108.

The story begins with the introduction of the main character, Carr ‘the raptor’ Luka.  Carr is a Zeroboxer.  This seems to be similar to our MMA, but done in Zero Gravity.  Carr is a rising star in the Zeroboxing world.  Young and talented.  He lives on Mars, which has been colonized, though he started out on Earth.  After an impressive fight, Carr is officially signed by the Zero Gravity Fighting Association, which assigns him his own “brandhelm,” Risha, a Martian colonist.  Brandhelms manage the brand and the marketing.  Risha helps to increase Carr’s popularity.  But, like many sports, there is a criminal element that the fighters don’t always know about.  Carr gets wrapped up in it unwittingly.  He has to decide if he wants to be the champ, or will be put ethics first.

This book is one I can highly recommend.  It definitely lends itself to the boy reader, but girls won’t be disappointed, even if they are not much of a sports person.  There is everything from sports to science and genetics, and even some romance.  It is a great book overall.

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes

There have been a lot of changes for me in the month of March. First is that I got great news for my future. However, that I cannot announce just yet until a few more things get into place.  I promise a major reveal later. After the high came the low – I lost my 93-year-old grandpa. I miss him dearly, but grateful for the time I had with him, and of course the fact he got to hear my happiness. Then came the last- surgery.

IMG_0183

Nurse Brid taking care of me

Now this was a very needed surgery for my ankle, removing a accessory bone in my foot and fixing my tendon.  So now I’m in a lovely boot wrap thingy and off school for several weeks.

Ok, Jamie, so what is your point?  I guess my point is that we deal with changes no matter what. We have gone through immense changes in education and in the library field.  My focus, of course is library.  When my older family look at me, they don’t get how my tech knowledge serves me well as a librarian.  They don’t realize that gone are the days where the librarian sits behind the desk, shushing students who are being even the least bit noisy.  Those libraries don’t get used.  Change is necessary

I’m proud to say that this year at my school I’ve managed to have open library time.  Now, I’m an elementary librarian on a fixed schedule.  I see 20 one-hour classes a week.  I also have several times a week where I’m at the cafe for duty.  This leaves not a ton of open library time.  So, I open my plan time to allow students, classes, and whomever wants into the library during that time.  I have seen a definite increase in usage of the library since I’ve opened it.  A lot seems to just want a bit of an escape for 5 min while checking out a new book, but if I’m that place to take a quick breath, I’m ok with it.  It’s a change I was willing to make and have seen some success.

I’ve also changed many staff opinions of a librarian.  They see me as a tech person, someone to help them when they have a question, no matter how small.  I love that.  They have really embraced me as their tech leader this year.   Sometimes I know their annoyed if I have to close the library to run and do something, but I have no choice without an aide.  But I want to help everyone, and if that means I have to step away from the library, so be it.  Most have come to understand this, luckily.  But, again, a change.

My point is that change is hard.  Changes are hard.  But with a little willingness, great things can happen with change.  Even if change isn’t what you want.