Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Public Library and Public School Connections

At the Department of Public Instruction, we are aware of Wisconsin public libraries’ purposeful efforts to respond to the needs of communities, especially in regard to youth and literacy. With the start of the 2015-16 school year, the Public Library Development Team would like to introduce you to a new interactive resource designed to increase awareness of local demographic and academic factors that play a role in your library’s services, collections, programs, and outreach.

Screenshot of the Public Library and  School District Services Map
Screenshot of the map
Through a cross-division effort, we have developed a resource that helps to identify particular variables at play in local and neighboring school districts. This interactive map is designed to help libraries make stronger connections with public school students, families, and educators. By seeing the data for yourself, we hope that you feel empowered to serve your community proactively and deliberately.  Use this map and the data dashboard it draws from to directly support your library’s mission.

Read the map instructions.
Build stronger connections through these suggested action steps:

1.   Examine the two data fields related to 3rd grade reading scores. How do the percentages for your local school district compare to others in your library system? In the rest of the state?
Email your local school district administrator(s) to discuss how your library might support school-year and summer reading needs.

2.   Examine the data field for percent economically disadvantaged. How does this percentage for your local school district compare to others in your library system? In the rest of the state?
Review your policies and services and consider how they encourage/discourage families with limited means to participate in the library community.

3.   Examine the multiple demographic data fields. How do the percentages for your local school district compare to others in your library system? In the rest of the state?
Examine the programs, collections, and services offered to youth. Are the demographics of your community AND the rest of the state reflected in your library? Consider ways that your library can be demonstrably inclusive to learners and families of all kinds.

  • Secondary School District boundaries are used on this map (vs. Elementary School District boundaries) because they are prone to change less frequently.  
  • For the most current School District Administrator name and contact information, consult the District Website.

To further explore data, visit the WISEdash public portal. For a brief WISEdash overview, see the support videos or view the “Using WISEdash to Understand Young Patrons as Students” webinar recording. The Division for Libraries and Technology is here to support your data-focused conversations with library staff, trustees, and community partners.

Best wishes for an informed start to the PK-12 school year!

Written by:
Tessa Michaelson Schmidt, Public Library Development Team

Library Director Certification Process

According to the Wisconsin Administrative Code PI 6, public library and public library system directors  in Wisconsin must be certified at the appropriate grade level which is determined by municipal population of the town, village, or city where the library is located. “Population” is defined as the number of persons reported by the U.S. Department of Commerce, Bureau of the Census in the last federal decennial census.

Public library directors are awarded primarily one of two types of certificates: regular or temporary. In order for a library to be in compliance with system membership requirements, directors eligible for regular certification must apply immediately upon employment if they are not already certified. A regular certificate is issued for a five-year period.

It can be renewed upon submission of the annual Annual Summation of Continuing Education Activities ( which satisfies the Division for Libraries and Technology that the holder has participated in continuing education in librarianship that is directly related to the position held or will permit advancement in the profession. The requirement for certification renewal is participation in 100 contact hours of continuing education as defined in this manual. A certificate is valid through the last day of the month in which it expires.

Image of Library Director certificate
Image of a Public Library Director Certificate
Directors must apply within three months of employment to be eligible for temporary certification. Temporary certification will not be issued to directors after they have served three months in their position.  Directors eligible for temporary certification must possess appropriate general education requirements. A table of general education and library education requirements is located in the "Certification Manual for Wisconsin Public Library Directors" on page seven.

Directors must submit an application form, located on the Certification ( web page,in writing to the Division for Libraries and Technology and a check for either a temporary ($10) or regular ($50)certification.

Additionally, a copy of either a college transcript or degree to demonstrate an applicant's educational level and any library coursework already taken in college or a list with approximate schedule for completion of the required courses for those directors applying for Grades 2 and 3. Certificates are effective on the date of approval by the Public Library Development Team through the last day of the expiration month indicated on the certificate.

The proposed schedule requires approval by the division. The temporary certificate may be renewed on an annual basis up to three times for a total coverage not exceeding a period of four years, provided the applicant has completed a basic public library administration course by the end of the first year and at least one course by the end of each subsequent year, not to exceed four years. The temporary certificate is not renewable a fourth time.

There is a certification validator located in each of the seventeen (17) public library systems who review application renewal materials and is copied on renewal email/snail mail.   

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

What Shall We Talk About Today? - WLS/MWFLS Technology Days Discussion

On September 15th WLS/MWFLS hosted Technology Days at the Lomira QuadGraphics Community Library. Library staff from the area gathered to share and learn about how technology is implemented in libraries. The DPI had the wonderful opportunity to share some of what the division is currently working re technology in libraries:

The Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA) states schools and libraries that want to receive support for internet access, internal connections, and basic maintenance services must certify that they are implementing measures to block or filter internet access to certain visual depictions. Now that there is more funding available in Category 2 (previously known as Priority 2), which requires sites to be CIPA compliant, in the E-rate program, the PLDT is evaluating CIPA again and what libraries would have to do to be compliant.
The requirements are:
  1. Internet safety policy publicly posted - most libraries have an internet policy listed on their website. 
  2. Public notice and hearing or meeting - this does not have to be a specific meeting, but can be incorporated into a meeting already scheduled and have an open comment period regarding this implementation. Note: make sure that documentation of this meeting is kept. 
  3. Technology protection measure - having technology that blocks or filters internet access to the best of the library's abilities. A person can be authorized to turn off the filter or block for an adult for legitimate research or lawful purpose. What is important to remember in terms of what needs to be filtered is what is the following: "The protection measures must block or filter Internet access to pictures that are: (a) obscene; (b) child pornography; or (c) harmful to minors (for computers that are accessed by minors)." Schools and libraries in the past ten years filter to be CIPA compliant, but were filtering beyond what was required. It is important to know what CIPA is stating to be filtered. 
Internet Computer and Wi-Fi Uses 2013 - 2014; wireless internet access increase 19 percent; public internet computer use decreases 9 percent
Internet Computer and Wi-Fi Uses 2013/2014
Internet Computer vs. Wireless
This has been mentioned before, but it's important enough to bring up again. Looking at the data that the DPI has, between 2013 and 2014 there is a decrease in public internet computer use and an increase in wireless internet access. DPI continues to look for good examples of wireless management systems, and on how data can be collected with every library in the state that has wireless access. 

"Dark" Data
Image of Dark Matter, Galaxy Cluster Abell 520 with text "Dark Data" on top
Dark Matter, Galaxy Cluster Abell 520
Are there types of data that libraries are not collecting that would show the types of services that libraries offer their communities? This is the question that the DPI will look at and analyze. The question to the library community is: What services does your library provide that is not being counted? 
**send your suggestions to Jamie McCanless, Library Data Coordinator**

Privacy concerns are discussed more and more in the library profession. As stated in a previous post, the current discussion is happening at the National Information Standards Organization (NISO) with a working group consisting of librarians, vendors, and publishers to talk about privacy concerns. The goal of these discussions is how to offer great library service and collect data that can improve these services without compromising the privacy of those the library serves. A report will be released soon that summarizes the discussion and offers a plan forward, and the DPI will look to see how the information that was gathered in the meetings might apply to Wisconsin libraries.

Privacy concerns must also be kept in mind when new and innovative services are introduced. Measure the Future, the "Google Analytics for the library building," tracks movement in the library building to show library staff how the community is using the building. Jason Griffey, founder of Measure the Future, is well aware of privacy concerns and has stated that the project believes patron privacy a big concern. The recording of movement is done using computer vision "blob detection," and no demographic information will be recorded.

Another project that wasn't discussed at Technology Days but was in the news recently regarding libraries and privacy is the Kilton Public Library and the Library Freedom Project. The Kilton Public Library is the first library to prototype the public library being a Tor relay site, with assistance from the Library Freedom Project. The project was questioned by some officials, but the library community and local community offered their support and the project, as of now, is still under way.

All the Rest
There were several other topics touched on during the discussion that have already been mentioned in the blog recently. More posts will be coming out about each of these topics in the near future:

The Challenge
It was touched on briefly in the "Dark Data" section that DPI is looking to get feedback from the Wisconsin library community. The challenge is for the library community to share what they believe their library is doing that is not being recorded, both in terms of data and stories. Every library in Wisconsin is doing amazing things with and for their community, and the DPI is looking to collect all of these different types of services so they can be shared to the libraries across the state. Please send any feedback to Jamie McCanless

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Monday, September 28, 2015

Wisconsin Digital Archives Collection Connection : Wisconsin County Unemployment Rate Maps

It was reported in June 2015 by the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development that Madison and Dane County had the lowest unemployment rates in the state at 3.5%. During the same month, 27 out of 32 of the state's largest cities experienced an increase in unemployment rates. The contrast reflected in Wisconsin's unemployment rates from county to county is important because it is a key way to measure the state of the economy based on location.

The Wisconsin Digital Archives can help you stay on top of fluctuating unemployment rates in Wisconsin.  Unemployment rate maps are released by the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development on a monthly basis. These maps include unemployment rates for all Wisconsin counties starting in January 2010 to the current month.

The Wisconsin Digital Archives also includes other documents related to the economy that may be of interest as well.

Written by:
Mary Hutnik and Abby Swanton, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Word collage about the economy
Courtesy of Pixabay

Friday, September 25, 2015

Steering Committee Appointed for the Revision of Public Library Systems

Earlier this month, State Superintendent Tony Evers announced the appointment of a Steering Committee to oversee a multi-year project to re-envision how Wisconsin Public Library Systems serve Wisconsin’s 384 public libraries.  Wisconsin’s library systems have provided services to public libraries in Wisconsin for over 40 years.  With the support of the Council on Library and Network Development (COLAND), the Steering Group in conjunction with various work groups and the Division for Libraries and Technology will seek to further to maximize the public investment in library systems and public libraries.

The 1971 signing ceremony for SB47, creating Public Library systems. Pictured (left to right) unidentified, Paul Dietz, Richard Crane, Ella Veslak, Lyle Eberhart, Nolan Neds, Pat Rogge, Bernard Schwab, Gov. Patrick Lucy (seated), Eugene G. McLane (behind governor), Muriel Fuller, Gertrude Thoreau, and Vivian Maddox, and two more gentlemen unidentified.
The Steering Group will:

  • Provide Strategic Vision, oversight, and general leadership for the process.
  • Work with the Department of Public Instruction (DPI) to select a project manager to lead the service model development and implementation process.
  • Establish process to select and appoint implementation for work group members.
  • Provide feedback and guidance to the project manager in the development of the work groups and timelines.
  • Provide oversight to ensure transparency and appropriate communication to the library community, decision makers and stakeholders.
  • Work with DPI to assess, based on information gathered and progress of service work groups, budget and legislative requests for the 2017-2019 biennial budget.
The Steering Group members were recommended and selected based upon the individual's role in Wisconsin public libraries, their library's or system size, as well as residency in order to obtain a geographic distribution. Nominees also submitted statements of experience and interest in the project and verified that they could devote time to the project and be available for meetings, programs, and focus groups when necessary. Members of the Steering Group are:

  • John Thompson, Director, Indianhead Federated Library System (representing Large Systems, Northern Wisconsin and the LEAN System Study Steering Team)
  • Stephen Ohs, Director, Lakeshores Library System, (Small Library System)
  • Paula Kiely, Director, Milwaukee Public Library (Largest Public & System Resource Library)
  • Bridget Christenson, Director, Hatch Public Library, Mauston  (Small Public Library)
  • Beth Carpenter, Director, Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library (Small-to Mid Public & Joint Library)
  • Kristie Hauer Director, Shawano City-County Library  (County Joint Public, Rural, and Northeast)
  • Kent Barnard, Director, Patterson Memorial Library, Wild Rose (Very Small Public)
  • Jessamyn Lee-Jones, Director, Platteville Public Library (Small to Mid-Size Public & Small Resource Library)
  • Bryan McCormick, Director, Hedberg Public Library, Janesville (Larger Public & Resource; also COLAND)
  • JonMark Bolthouse , Director, Fond du Lac Public Library (Larger Public but not Resource Library
  • John DeBacher, Director, Public Library Development (non-voting; DPI Liaison)

The work of this group seeks to strengthen the cooperative spirit that has made Wisconsin’s public libraries leaders in the cost effective sharing of resources. At its first organizational meeting on September 3, 2015, the committee selected and approved John Thompson to serve as Chair and Paula Kiely to serve as Vice Chair. 

Additional information about the process for revising Wisconsin's Public Library Systems can be found at

Written by:
John Thompson, Director, Indianhead Federated Library System, with John DeBacher, Public Library Development Team

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Library Director Learner's Guide

Continuing Education consultants from several states have developed a wonderful resource for the benefit of new and experienced library directors across the country, since the role of the library director is continuously evolving. It is called the Public Library Director 101 Series ( and it introduces the many and unique components of public library directorship. It consists of four brief video recordings with a broad overview of the following topics:
Image of Library Books
Image of Library Books 

1. Your New Role addresses ethics, values, and leadership traits and their importance for public library director (

2. Community Relations topic introduces librarians to marketing, public relations, and outreach from the public library director perspective. (

3. Planning and Project Management articulates fundamental steps in the strategic planning process, the benefits of strategic planning, and tools for successful project management.   (

4. Asset Management discusses the benefits, skills, and qualities of libraries and how to manage these assets including staff, buildings, collections, and budget. (

Library Director Learner's Guide101 ( reflects the topics that all directors encounter in their continuously evolving position in the communities. It was developed to assist the learning of the video series (described above) by prompting reflection and recording notes on the essential questions posed during the brief webinar clips. Each chapter contains  related resources and a new library director's must read list. There is a glossary to reference for essential terms that may or may not be familiar to directors.

These complimentary resources were made possible through the support of the Chief Officers of Library Agencies' (COSLA) CE Connector Project, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Time of the Signs

Photo of "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada" sign
Iconic Las Vegas Sign (courtesy of Pixaby)
I've been thinking about signs lately.  Maybe it's because I've made two trips from New Glarus to Minneapolis this month and paid a great deal of attention to the travel / business signs I encountered along the way (after all, I didn't want to miss the turn off for the Norske Nook in Osseo).  Signs exist for so many reasons.  They can be directional.  They can be informational. They can make you want to buy things (like banana creme pie).  They can - over time - even become iconic like the classic "Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas, Nevada" neon sign.

We have a ton of signs in LibraryLand - probably too many. And we've all seen the websites and blogs devoted to silly, useless, and entirely negative library signs.  I've certainly created my share of "don't even think about it" signs during my years as a librarian.  So - as fun as that could be - I'm not going to rehash those.  Instead I want to focus on how our library signs can be more effective.

The San Jose Public Library has made their Signage Design Guidelines available online - it's a marvelous document that describes their journey to create customer-centered signage.  What they discovered along the way can help all libraries - big and small:
  • be consistent with names of library departments, collections & destinations
  • less is more when it comes to the number of signs in your library
  • keep signs concise for users to read while moving
  • keep in-depth signage in wait areas only
  • merchandise library materials face out to minimize the signage needed
  • pictures & graphics speak volumes
  • have a consistent use of signage hierarchy (primary, secondary, tertiary & collateral)
  • language translation is not critical with primary signage
  • have a recognized "look and feel" to your library signs
  • use odd shapes & sizes with your signs
  • staff training is essential to incorporate these new principles into practice
I love the one about pictures and graphics speaking volumes.  A recent discussion thread on the ARSL list focused on libraries using digital signs / digital monitors to promote their services and programs.  The general consensus from the librarians who posted was that this was an easy, versatile, fairly inexpensive, and effective way to capture the attention of our library users.  If you want to use photos from library events / programs that clearly show library users, then be certain that your library is using a photo release form.  Wisconsin state statutes protect the identity of library users whether they're checking out library materials or attending a library-sponsored event or program.  An example of a photo release form can be found on our DPI website.

Many thanks to my hubbie, John, for coming up with the title for this post.

Written by:
Denise Anton Wright, Public Library Development

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Two More Ways To Customize WISCAT

Add text, a banner, logo, or other image to the header or footer area

Lakeshore Technical College Library brands its WISCAT with the college logo and the library name in the header. 
Header and Footer areas pointed to on image of Lakeshore Tech College Library WISCAT home page
Lakeshore Technical College Library logo and name in the header area of WISCAT

  • How: view UX Admin Header Footer Options (07:09)
  • Tips: 
    • When creating a header and a footer, do both then Save. Because, if you create and save header first then create and save footer, only the footer will display. 
    • Select the Library Defined branding option when wanting to add an image and enter text such as the library name into the header.   

Add link page to existing, external web page such as library's own website to display as a separate tab.  Lets you enable or disable display of the link page tab based on the search interface user type (guest, patron, or staff member).

Child Care Information Center (CCIC) created a web link "tab" to the web page where its newsletters are accessible to all users. 

Image shows display of CCIC Newsletters web page when use link page tab created in WISCAT
CCIC Newsletters web link page tab in WISCAT makes access to its newsletters easy for users

UX Admin (User Experience) customization tools are accessible to library staff logged into WISCAT.
Questions? Contact WISCAT staff at or 888-542-5543 ext 1, then press 1.

Written by:
Vickie Long, Resources for Libraries & Lifelong Learning

Monday, September 21, 2015

LSTA Updates

Public libraries and public library systems submitted fifty nine (59) applications in nine (9) different categories for Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) projects to occur in 2017-2018. The applications requested funds for a variety of projects. Outside reviewers (librarians and other subject experts) evaluated the applications submitted in the competitive grant categories.

The projects, grant category rankings, and overall LSTA program for 2017 were reviewed by the LSTA Advisory Committee at its December 1, 2016. State Superintendent Tony Evers will announce the grant awards by mid-February 2017. The grant awards will be implemented from April 1, 2017-March 31, 2018. The preliminary dollars budgeted for each grant category, the dollars requested in the applications, and the number of applications received, are listed below. Some of the grant categories are noncompetitive; others are competitive.

• Delivery Services: $90,000 budgeted and requested; 2 applications

• Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) Participation Support: $50,000 budgeted and requested; 1 application

• Library System Technology Projects: $350,000 budgeted and requested; 16 applications

• Outcome Measurement Support: $75,000 budgeted and $12,000 requested; 1 application

• Digital Creation: $120,000 budgeted; $110,371 requested; 11 applications

• Digitization of Local Historical Material: $40,000 budgeted; $10,888 requested; 2 applications

• Accessibility in Public Libraries/Public Library Systems: $75,000 budgeted; $122,877 requested;10 applications

• Literacy Projects: $85,000 budgeted; $66,108 requested; 8 applications

The total amount budgeted for the local projects was $910,000 the total requested was $812,092.

Written by:
Terrie Howe, Public Library Development Team

Friday, September 18, 2015

Fifty Years of Public Library Circulation

The process of finalizing 2014 Wisconsin Public Library Service Data is taking longer than usual this year. In the meantime, we look back fifty years to 1965. Back then, libraries had only thirty days to file their annual reports with the Division. Data for 1965 was collected in 1966 but wasn't published until 1967 when it was prefaced with this statement:


The Division for Library Services regrets the delay in the publication of the 1965 public library statistics. This year the transition was made from manual tabulation to data processing. In this process there were unanticipated details and complications that arose which postponed the printing. It is hoped that in subsequent years the improved method will facilitate early printing of the Service Record.

As can be seen in the graph below, statewide circulation for 1965 was less than one-third of its 2009 peak. Beginning with the 1990 report year the Division began reporting circulation of children's material. Twenty years later for 2010 we included uses of downloadable content (e-books, e-audio, and e-video).

Wisconsin Public Libraries: Fifty years of circulation
(click the thumbnail below to view the full size chart)
Wisconsin Public Libraries: Fifty years of circulation

Reported circulation of physical material for 2014 is 57,608,623 statewide. The year that total circulation first reached this level was 2005. If we include uses of downloadable content, the total is 60,560,342, last seen for total circulation during 2008. Stay tuned for the next fifty years of data.

p.s. We promise to post final 2014 service data before 2016.

Written by Jamie McCanless, Public Library Development Team

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Learn & Grow With Us!

open book and open laptop
Image from Pixabay
BadgerLearn Pro connects you to free continuing education resources.

We want BadgerLearn Pro to be a place where you can easily find current and relevant professional development materials. We hope that BadgerLearn Pro will empower Wisconsin librarians to learn, grow, and try new things!

We link to webinars, presentation slides, videos and other formats from ALA, state libraries around the country, WebJunction, InfoSoup, and Wisconsin library systems. We scour the internet for materials of professional value so you don’t have to. Browse by subject, search, or just see what’s new. New content is added daily!

Participate in our organized corner of the internet by learning something new!

Or get involved in the project. Participate in the 30 minute monthly virtual meeting and/or contribute digital content such as archived webinars that you’ve lead, powerpoint slides that you’ve presented etc. Ideally, we would like every library system to be represented in BadgerLearn Pro!

Please contact the BadgerLearn Pro team at to get involved.

This free collection is maintained by Department of Public Instruction, WiLS, and WPLC (Wisconsin Public Library Consortium).

Written by:
Kara Ripley, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Upcoming WLA Session: Hospitality Through Setting the Table

WLA Book Club Discussion Setting the Table by Danny Meyer When: Friday, November 6th 9:30-11:30; Where: WLA 2015 Madison Marriott West; Why: To create happy patrons
Setting the Table WLA Book Club Discussion at WLA 2015
"In every business, there are employees who are the first point of contact with the customers (attendants at airport gates, receptionists at doctors' offices, bank tellers, executive assistants, [library workers]). Those people can come across either as agents or as gatekeepers. An agent makes things happen for others. A gatekeeper sets up barriers to keep people out. We're looking for agents, and our staff members are responsible for monitoring their own performance: In that transaction, did I present myself as an agent or a gatekeeper? In the world of hospitality, there's rarely anything in between." - Setting the Table, Danny Meyer
One of the sessions at this year's WLA Annual Conference is "Thinking About Customer Service Through Setting the Table." This session, led by Stef Morrill and Ryan Claringbole, will use a book club type method to go over the book Setting the Table by Danny Meyer, a restaurateur, looking at how his use of "enlightened hospitality" can be used in a library setting.

The session will focus on the book, but also be a discussion on customer service in libraries: what works, what doesn't work, and what would people like to see. Library staff are great at providing the best service possible to their communities, and can provide each other with advice on how to enhance that experience with their communities.

Copies of the audiobook are available on the WPLC site. Copies of the book are available in library catalogs across the state. Use the Twitter hashtag #thelibrarytable to share your thoughts.

Written by:
Ryan Claringbole, Public Library Development Team

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

In Case You Missed It!

The BadgerLink team has had a busy Summer. Here’s what we’ve been up to:


Explora is a new EBSCO resource. Each Explora interface features an attractive, user-friendly design that is easily viewed on mobile devices. Starting June 30, 2015, Explora replaced Searchasaurus, Kids Search, Student Research Center.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

American Doctoral Dissertations

EBSCO has has provided a new resource to BadgerLink, American Doctoral Dissertations, 1933-1955. This resource includes nearly 100,000 dissertations from 1933 through 1955, and is a full image copy of the original print index Doctoral Dissertations Accepted by American Universities.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

Britannica Digital Learning’s Interactive Resources, Learning Games, Images & Videos

Libraries and schools will be able to link directly to age-appropriate image and video collections, interactive resources, and learning games from Britannica School.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

New Super Search

Search multiple BadgerLink resources simultaneously with the updated Super Search. Now when you use the Super Search, you will use a more visually appealing interface, have more search options, and also search more BadgerLink resources! Depending on your affiliation with WISCAT, your screen may look slightly different but overall functionality is the same.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

Britannica Escolar

Britannica Digital Learning has expanded and completely updated their Spanish encyclopedia, Britannica Escolar. The changes include a new homepage, more content, and the ability to flip between levels.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:


Unfortunately, Flocabulary’s the Week in Rap, a resource provided by the Wisconsin Media Lab, will no longer be available through BadgerLink.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

EBSCO Adds Associated Press Videos

BadgerLink now has access to 60,000 videos from the Associated Press, the world's leading news agency! You can access AP videos when you do a search using Academic Search Premier, Business Source Premier, Explora for Everyone, Explora for Middle and High Schools, MAS Ultra, MasterFILE Complete, or Middle Search Plus.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

New Ciencias en Espanol

Ciencias en EspaƱol is the perfect place for native speakers of Spanish, English Language Learners, and Dual Language students and educators to explore physics, geology, biology, and more. Students will learn about science through interesting videos and descriptive images. Non-fiction reading guides are provided to guide students to take the next step with their learning.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

New Explora Educator’s Edition

EBSCO has released a new addition to Explora, and this one is just for educators! Explora Educator’s Edition highlights content relevant to teachers, including lesson plans, curriculum standards, and other professional development resources.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

Connect NoveList To Your Catalog

When browsing NoveList or NoveList K-8 for a book title, it can be frustrating for your users to find just the right book, only to discover it’s not available in your library or library system. Now, NoveList and NoveList K-8 have the capability to connect to your library catalog so users can see if a book title is available at your library directly within the NoveList interface.

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:

Research Guides

The BadgerLink Research Guide and the BadgerLink Super 3 Research Guide help students through the research process and provide materials for educators to teach the research process. Like the rest of the BadgerLink website, the research guides have a new look.

If you linked to the research guides on your website, please note that the URLs for these resources have changed:

Updated BadgerLink Website

In the Spring and Summer, the BadgerLink team made many updates and changes to the website. On August 26th, we made a huge update to our website which changed many of our URLs (but not our authenticated URLs).

Read more from the Badger Bulletin:
Written by:
The BadgerLink Team
Ben Miller, Gail Murray, Elizabeth Neuman, and Kara Ripley

Monday, September 14, 2015

Library of the Month: Wittenberg Birnamwood School District

It’s September and that means hitting the books. At the Wittenberg-Birnamwood School District (WBSD) libraries that means hard work, collaboration, and BadgerLink!

Readers at WBSD
Image from WBSD
Like many public schools, the library technology program at WBSD faces some challenges due to budget restrictions and the reduction of full time media specialists. The district media specialist, Chris Stuffle, travels to all three schools and Jan Atkinson, Birnamwood's public and school librarian is part time. With an enrollment of over 1100 students, the district relies heavily on the dedication and skill of three wonderful library aides who are always ready to help library patrons find materials, access databases, solve computer and technical problems, and provide great book recommendations!

Readers at WBSD
Image from WBSD
Birnamwood Elementary and Middle School library is very unique. It is one of only two public libraries in the state that is joined with the school. It is such a valuable resource for the students to have access to an entire consortium of books and materials. Another bonus for the students is that the library is open beyond the normal school hours.

Last summer the Wittenberg Elementary and Middle School library was completely remodeled! The remodel included new shelving, carpet, paint, furniture, and updated computers. Shelving was donated by Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning and the Wayland Academy. The additional shelving has allowed for the continued expansion of the collection by providing about 40% more shelving space! A small computer lab is housed in the library which is actively used by students and is a staff development center for teachers. And students now flock to the library to enjoy the new atmosphere, sit in the comfy chairs, and browse the shelves.
Battle of the Books Competition
Image from WBSD

The principal at Wittenberg Elementary and Middle School, Vicky Haas, recently purchased a mobile laptop cart with the goal of meeting the computer access demands. A great support of the library and technology, Mrs. Haas is also planning for an additional wired lab within the next year!

All district 6th graders take a course dedicated to building information-research skills and learning to be ethical media users. After learning about copyright, the Creative Commons, website evaluation, and Internet searching skills, each 6th grader creates a movie-trailer style project based on a favorite chapter book. The project requires students to find graphics, photographs, sound effects, and music files that can be legally used and incorporate them into a short movie. The goal is " help students to efficiently sift through the immense amount information found on the internet, teach them to critically evaluate it, and be responsible technology users. " said, Chris Stuffle, District Media Specialist. The students rely heavily on BadgerLink to complete this project especially Soundzabound, EBSCO Multimedia Search, and Wisconsin Media Lab resources.

WBSD Computer Lab
Image from WBSD
BadgerLink is vital to the district's goal of integrating information technology skills across the curriculum and 6th grade isn’t the first time students hear about BadgerLink. Students in 3rd through 5th grade rely on BadgerLink as they delve into the world of writing research papers, evaluating information, and learning to cite materials. "I love the amount of research tools BadgerLink provides that are credible, that students have access to information with an accompanying citation, and the options available for students of all reading and grade levels!" says, Tami Kitowski, middle school teacher. BadgerLink provides easy access for students to locate primary sources, newspaper and magazine articles, and students and teachers can narrow search results by publication date, full text, and reading level. In the Fall, staff will be introducing students to Explora!

WBSD is dedicated to providing exceptional learning opportunities for all students and will be spending the next school year updating the information technology curriculum. The library staff is looking forward to the new school year and has many plans for new projects and reading opportunities!

Written by:
Kara Ripley, Resources for Libraries and Lifelong Learning