Whenever I attend big technology conferences like MACUL in Michigan this week, I am reminded about how integral indispensable librarians and library programs are to the technology efforts in schools - or should be. Teams of committed educators working toward a common goal are more effective than any single group or individual. This is true once again as schools and teachers expend efforts to make student-owned computing devices productive learning tools.
BYOD was a popular buzzword in Grand Rapids (as it was at last year's ISTE and our own state TIES conference in MN). I've posted about our own district's ELF-Tech Project before (here, here, and here), so I'll simply restate our goals of the program:
- to increase motivation and engagement in the classroom
- to help provide access to a wide variety of resources that support differentiated instruction efforts
- to help provide increased student access to school provided e-books, e-textbooks, and Moodle units
- to provide the means for online collaborative work in the classroom
- to develop workable rules and standards for classroom teachers to help manage student-owned technologies
So what does this have to do with libraries? These are some things all librarians should be asking themselves if their schools are figuring out means of giving all students continuous access to online resources, whether student or school owned.
- Do my library rules and policies help students take advantage of their mobile computing devices?
- Can students and staff get knowledgeable support from my library staff when they have technical problems?
- Am I selecting library resources with mobile computing devices in mind?
- In my role as instructional leader, am I using best practices that take advantage of a ubiquitous technology environment - and helping my teachers do so as well?
- Do I exemplify a learner who takes advantage of having continuous access to my PLN and to the world's information?
Is your school 1:1 or BYOD? If so, how are you as a librarian supporting this effort?
If we don't figure this out, we may not be BYOD, but DOA.