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SLA Blog » March 2013RSS Feed RSS

The SLA blog contains news about the SLA and topical information of general interest to our members. The blog has been running since 2004. An RSS 2.0 feed and information about how to subscribe to the blog are available.

Older blog posts are still available, though archived, on the website, but please check the date at the top of the post to make sure the offer or information is likely to be valid.

Sad News

Linda Banner died on Sunday after an eighteen month fight with cancer.  Many librarians will know Linda, either from her early days with Hertfordshire School Library Service, her time in publishing (Watts/Orchard, latterly Hachette), or her recent freelance work with Pandora Books in King’s Lynn.  Further details (donations, cards, attendance at the funeral on 12th April) should be addressed to Anne Marley at anne.marley@tiscali.co.uk.

Many SLA members will remember Linda from her years on the SLA committee and her support for school libraries over the years.  Our thoughts are with her family.

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Design Award Shortlist Announced

LDA Logo MediumThe shortlist for the 2013 School Library Design Award has now been announced.

The six finalists (in no particular order) are:

  • The Burgate School Library, Fordingbridge, Hampshire
  • Nansloe Academy Story Garden, Helston, Cornwall
  • Wyndham Park Infant’s School Library, Salisbury
  • Comberton Village College, Comberton, Cambridgeshire
  • Heathfield Community School Library, Taunton, Somerset
  • Carterton Community College, Oxfordshire

The shortlist was selected by a panel of representatives from the School Library Association and sponsor Demco who judged all the entries across a set of criteria:  inviting/improved library image; space planning; educational objectives; technology and engagement; consultation.

Congratulations to the finalists who now go through to the last stage of judging, and thanks to all who took part in the Award process.

Find out more in the full press release about the announcement.

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Would you like to mentor a new professional?

Do you have loads of things you wish you had known when you first started in school librarianship? Would you like to pass on your experience and knowledge to someone just beginning their professional journey? We are looking for members who are prepared to give a little time to mentoring a new school librarian - it could be in a primary, special or secondary school. If you are interested please contact us on 01793 530166 or email jane.cooper[at]sla.org.uk and put 'New Mentor' in the title. Many thanks in advance!

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Catching up...

There has been so much happening at SLA recently that it has been quite difficult to keep up  to date with all the other wonderful reading and library matters that have been happening - so here's a quick gallop through some items you may have missed.

Beanstalk (previously Volunteer Reading Help) launched it's Charter for Children's Literacy - with an event and film about having a reading helper.  Do take a look at the Charter, our President Kevin Crossley-Holland is quoted in there, as well as few comments from me!

Dame Jacqueline Wilson, the most borrowed author of the last decade, and John Burningham, the multi-award winning illustrator have both been nominated for the international Hans Christian Andersen Awards 2014. The Awards are presented every other year to a “living author and illustrator whose complete works have made a lasting contribution to children's literature”.  The international jury will be confirmed at the Bologna Book Fair 2013 and the winners will be announced the following year at the same event. The Awards will be presented at the next biennial IBBY World Congress which will be in Mexico City in 2014.

ReadingZonePicChildren and young people aged four to 18 years are being challenged to make their own picture book in the ReadingZone Picture Book Competition, running in UK schools and libraries between now and 20th April 2013.  Author and illustrator Simon Bartram (creator of Bob, the Man on the Moon) will select the winning entries across three Categories, which include: Young Creators (four to six years); Primary (seven years plus) and Secondary (11 years plus). There is an additional award for those who are deemed to have put the most effort into creating their picture book.  Picture books entered for the award can be made by individuals or groups and any media can be used. They can be up to 24 A4 pages; a blank template is available at www.Readingzone.com (Schools) along with further tips and guidelines about making picture books.  The competition closes on 20th April 2013 and the winners will be announced in May. Prizes will include a free author / illustrator visit for the winning schools and libraries, and free packs of picture books. Each winning school or library will receive 50 printed copies of their picture book and the winning picture books will be posted online.

Finally, if you are a Softlink UK customer you may be eligible to win a place at the SLA Weekend Course in June at Belfast - but you must be relatively new to school librarianship - check it out, and Good Luck!


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Shakespeare Week Launch

ShakespeareOn 16th April 2013 the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust will launch a brand new annual cultural and learning campaign for Britain’s primary schools.  The inaugural Shakespeare Week will go live in March 2014, to celebrate the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth.
Shakespeare Week will be officially launched by The RT Hon Michael Gove MP, Secretary of State for Education, in London on 16th April 2013.  The aim of Shakespeare Week is to bring Shakespeare’s stories, language, historical backdrop and his creative influence vividly to life for more than three million children in the UK and ensure that his cultural legacy is a central part of the primary education learning experience.  
Primary school teachers will have access to online resources that can be used across the curriculum. Pupils at participating schools will receive a ‘Passport to Shakespeare’ that will encourage children and their families to go on to explore their cultural heritage beyond the classroom at their local museums, galleries, theatres, concert halls, libraries and historical places.  
The Shakespeare Birthplace Trust is working with cultural partners at a national and regional level to deliver Shakespeare-themed events and activities for this significant cultural celebration, as well as recruiting some high profile ambassadors to add weight and voice to the campaign. Further details will be announced at the launch of Shakespeare Week in April 2013.


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Spring 2013 issue of The School Librarian

TSL 61-1 COVER The latest issue of The School Librarian - Volume 61, Number 1, Spring 2013 - is now on its way to members. It includes a fascinating range of feature articles and our usual wide selection of book reviews.

As usual, the ict[at]sla section can be read online with clickable links, a convenient way to quickly check out some new websites and resources. Our archive of the ict[at]sla section goes back to Volume 56 Number 1.

A complete index of the book reviews in this issue is available - the online index of book reviews can be searched back to Volume 54 (2006).

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New subject professional development materials for English

Ofsted has published a new set of development materials for English at both primary and secondary level. They look at developments in a specific subject over the previous three years, based on specialist inspectors’ visits to a range of schools.

This training resource has been produced to help teachers in primary and secondary schools evaluate their current provision for English, using the English report Moving English forward, published in March 2012, as a starting point for discussion. There are accompanying notes designed to be used in conjunction with the presentation slides.

School librarians will find the sections on reading for pleasure interesting as libraries are mentioned in both the primary and secondary accompanying notes.

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