Alice Sneary: July 2009 Archives
If you're a student (or the parent of a student) with a required reading list for the summer, be sure to create a WorldCat list for all the titles. Then as you read through the summer, you can rate and write a quick review for each book/item you finish. You'll wow your teacher in the fall and may even be able to start the new year off with extra credit in your back pocket.
If you're a teacher creating a required reading list, use WorldCat to help you judge how prevalent the title is in nearby public libraries. Once you've finished the list, you'll have a quick and easy way to share the reading list online with students. Plus, it comes complete with cover art to boot (when available). See a sample list from Padua High School, in Parma, Ohio, and then create your own!
If you're a parent of a school age child, you're probably all too familiar with the scenario where your child is reading above his or her grade level at the end of the school year, only to return to school the next fall having "slid" back down a level over the summer.
Now there's a way to stop the summer slide, thanks to some enhancements on the "Find a Book" Web site from the WorldCat partner, MetaMetrics. This site can help suggest books your kids may like, at their appropriate reading level.
The "Find a Book" Web site uses the popular Lexile Framework® for Reading. Readers can either enter their Lexile measure, or their grade and if they find reading materials difficult or easy. Once they find the books they're interested in, they can connect to their local library through WorldCat.org and check availability.
The Find a Book Web site now offers the option to "Look up at a local library"
which connects to WorldCat.org.
Once you're in WorldCat.org, of course, you can create a list, add ratings, get automatic citations for an item or do all the social networking activities you're used to doing.
Background on summer reading slide
The "Find a Book" Web site is based, in part, on the research of James Sangil Kim, Ed.D., assistant professor of education at Harvard University. Dr. Kim's studies on summer "loss" or "slide," when many students' reading skills diminish over the summer months away from school, suggests that students who read a minimum of eight high-interest books at their Lexile level over the summer can achieve similar gains in reading growth as students who attend summer school.
Durham Public Schools in North Carolina have implemented a Lexile program based on Dr. Kim's research with success. Watch a 4-minute video about how the program boosted their summer reading success.
There has been a flurry of WorldCat partnership activity going on lately. Here's a run-down:
More options for digitized books
As part of an agreement with Kirtas Technologies, WorldCat.org will show if a book is available as digitized content or that it can be made available for digitization. The agreement is signed. Now we just have to slot it into the development schedule.
"Find a Book" Web site links to WorldCat
The recently enhanced "Find a Book" Web site from the MetaMetrics helps to connect readers with books appropriate for their reading level, using the Lexile Framework® for Reading. Readers can either enter their Lexile measure, or their grade and if they find reading materials difficult or easy. Once they find the books they're interested in, now they can connect to their local library through WorldCat.org and check availability.
I'll post more about this site soon. It's got a great interface and makes it really easy for K-12 readers to find good books to read!
WorldCat Mobile pilot partner creates another app for librarians
While this isn't really a new partnership, we're so proud of our WorldCat partner organization, Boopsie, for taking the lead on helping librarians navigate the biggest library conference of the year in the U.S., going on next week. Librarians can download the ALA Mobile app from their mobile phone browser at http://ala.boopsie.com, or text "ala2009" to 41411.
More news on the WorldCat Mobile pilot coming next week. Stay tuned.