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The purpose of this website is to provide a place for
K-12 school library media specialists
to learn a little more about web tools that can be used to improve and enhance school library media programs and services, to see examples of how they can be used, and to share success stories and creative ideas about how to use and integrate them. Hundreds of free and inexpensive web tools are available for school library media specialists to use that can make us more productive, valued, and, perhaps, more competitive.

This wiki was created for school library media specialists by Dr. Donna Baumbach and Dr. Judy Lee, University of Central Florida. Much of the information--including identifying a need fr this kind of information--is the result of a survey conducted in 2008 of over 600 school library media specialists about their knowledge and use of web-based tools in library media programs. It is updated frequently with new tools and resources.


Where are you on this social media ladder?
Here's a must-read: "14 Ways K-12 Librarians Can Teach Social Media" by Joyce Valenza. It's the best thing I've read in a long long time to sum up where we are--or where we should be--as professionals. Here's the first paragraph:
"This is the best time in history to be a teacher-librarian. Major shifts in our information and communication landscapes present new opportunities for librarians to teach and lead in areas that were always considered part of their role, helping learners of all ages effectively use, manage, evaluate, organize and communicate information, and to love reading in its glorious new variety."

Where would you like to be on the social media ladder?
We hope that WebTools4U2Use will help you climb higher and higher! Most importantly we hope that you will find tools to help your school library media program survive and thrive...and you'll find tools that will help your students become better consumers and producers of information, become more collaborative and more creative, and become more technology and information literate.

(Read more about the social media ladder, how it was developed, how it has grown and changed and a new rung on the ladder, Conversationalists, at the Social Technographics blog.)

Why Web 2.0 Tools?

Just as pen, paper, scissors, glue, crayons, construction paper, typewriter and watercolors were some of the tools many of us used to produce reports and share what we were learning, blogs, wikis, photo sharing sites, podcasts and other new online resources are the tools of today's students. And just as we had to learn to cut, to color, to use cursive writing, our students must learn how to use these new tools. That means we must use the tools, evaluate their usefulness, and teach students to use them effectively as well. If school library media programs are to continue to be relevant to today's students, we must embrace these new digital tools--hopefully, leading the way as we have in other areas of technology in the past.

Take a look at the AASL Standards 21st Century Learner, ISTE's National Educational Technology Standards for Students (2007) and the Framework for 21st Century Learning. Hopefully, you'll begin to see how these tools are integral to helping students meet or exceed these (and other) standards. Learn to use these tools and teach your students and teachers how to use them when appropriate. You'll teach the way they learn.

Compare these two versions of "When I Become a Teacher."

Times have changed!


While early websites were passive--that is you could read information from the page, but you couldn't add to the information or change it in any way--this wiki will focus on the newer tools that are commonly called Web 2.0 tools because they allow for much interactivity and user-created content. Some people say that Web 1.0 was about locating information, and Web 2.0 is about using websites as application software much as one uses MSWord or PowerPoint or other software on your computer. Web 2.0 sites allow one to read AND write! In addition, most Web 2.0 sites offer the opportunity to share and/or collaborate on the work. Web 2.0 tools provide digital equity, too, providing knowledge about tools students and teachers can use outside of school.

Here's a quick visual overview of Web 2.0

Organization of WebTools4U2Use

arrow.jpgNear the top of the left hand column, you'll see different categories of these web tools. If you click on a category, you'll find some basic information, some of the most popular tools in each category (based on a survey of school library media specialists beginning with
Five to Test Drive. Try out one or more of the most popular tools in each category to get an idea of what's available to you and how each tools works.


Then you'll see More to Explore, other tools in this category that may be useful to you or your students.)

You'll find ideas for using these tools in the library media center. They've been suggested by school library media specialists or identified in the professional literature.
There are links to some tutorials to help you learn more about the tools and how to use them.
You'll also find links to more information about how these tools are being used in libraries and school library media centers.
Finally, and most recently added at the suggestion of a WebTools4U2Use wiki user, you'll find links to rubrics that you can use to grade student projects created using these tools or as models for creating your own rubrics.

For each category, you'll find a link to a page where you can share your ideas, your favorites, and your own or your students' and/or teachers' creations!



You can click on any word in the "tag cloud" below the page index to see where a word or topic appears. The larger the word, the more often it is used throughout this wiki. Hover over a word to see how many times it appears, and then click to see where it appears.

There's a table of contents for each page at the upper right of the tool pages.

You can search for any word using the search box at the top of the left hand column. Finally, at the bottom of the left hand column you'll find a visual search engine for this wiki.

Learn. See. Share. Enjoy!

Continue reading about Web 2.0 and see more places you can learn about them here.

If you have suggestions, please use the discussion tab on this page or email baumbach@mail.ucf.edu.