Using These Tools in the LMC

What are some ways you are using drawing, charting and mapping tools in the school library media center? Please share them here!


  • Great library cartoon created in GoAnimate! Thanks to Joyce Valenza's SLJ column for pointing it out!

  • In a blog post, Larry Ferlazzo suggests using a "three panel book review" to help student learn to summarize and points to some professional examples from the San Francisco Chronicle. Students could use any of the comic strip creators to do this.


  • And here are 35 more ways in this collection of ideas by Tom Barrett!

  • Malin Lauschus of the International English School in Sweden shares these ideas for using Wordle:
    • I've used Wordle to create easy but eye-catching new signs for the library. For instance, for the sign for the Fiction section I typed in the word "Fiction" about 8 times (so it shows up large), then I typed in genre words about three times each so they are medium-sized, and then I typed in a ton of authors' names once each so they are small. I printed them on a color printer and laminated them, and have inexpensive signs. The kids like looking at them and finding favorite authors etc.
    • I also use Wordle to post quick notices on the library door - I am not very artistic to create fancy handwritten ones, and the Wordle ones add some more interest than just a plain Word document.
  • Diana Greenleaf from Windham MIddle School in New Hampshire shares this idea for Wordlee:
    • We've used it for a quick and easy book report - students had a list of things they had to fill out prior to going on Wordle - they included: title, author, setting, main character, various attributes, climax, etc. Once they filled that out they put it into a Word document so they could cut and paste it in case there were any technical issues, then they could go to Wordle and create. They make a great bulletin board when they are done - we had them up for Open House.
  • See this wiki page for making Wordle book ads including a template, directions and a gallery. Here's an example:

  • Connecticut library media specialist Jeri Hurd says about Wordle:
    • Sudents are using it as part of their presentations on poets. They input text from several poems and it results in a wonderful graphic analysis of themes/motifs used by the poet.
  • There's an article with ideas for using Wordle and TagCrowd here. For example, "One of the struggles with teaching research is to get kids to generate search keywords. Have students generate a cloud on one of the first articles of the search. The big words can often spark further ideas for specific topics. An article on AIDS research reveals the following “BIG” words: “Innocentive” “Rockefeller” and “Vaccineworld.” These could serve as more specific search words that student might not have known."
  • Sue Bailey of Valdosta State University shared her Dewey posters created with Wordle and clipart and a photo of some them hanging in an elementary media center:
Word image created by Sue Bailey, July 2009, via, Creative Commons Attribution.
Sue has generously made these posters available for download (pdf) on the LM_NET wiki under Dewey Decimal System.

More Tools


DVolver I'm not sure if this should go under video or drawing tools....but it is a site that helps you create your own animated movie. You pick the background, sky, characters, write the dialogue, select the graphics. Different!



Community Walk lets you create maps and add photos, videos, comments and more! Share on the site or embed in your webpages. A new twist on the "our community" unit?