More about LibGuides for the teacher librarian

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LibGuides Intro from Springshare on Vimeo.

Since Joyce Valenza’s recent visit to Australia and her inspirational demonstration of her school library’s online resources using LibGuides, our team at Melbourne High School have been determined to revamp the tired library pages. Creating attractive and user-friendly web pages and integrating online resources is so easy with LibGuides. So easy, in fact, that I haven’t been able to wait for the curriculum areas to be set up, and have jumped into creating pages for a few of the curricular subject areas. The LibGuides page is created with the addition of boxes which are named and can be organised and reorganised to suit. Images and multimedia can be easily added too. I haven’t been as ambitious as Joyce who has used Glogster to organise visual hyperlinks to her resources, but hey, one step at a time. I think the pages look great, the more visual organisation the better as far as I’m concerned.

LibGuides provides excellent support as my Head of Library discovered when she contacted them for help and received an immediate reply. I’m not a fan of ploughing through text-heavy manuals so I found a visual alternative which you can have a look at here. I had a look at how Illawara Grammar School and Trinity Grammar School (NSW) presented their school library’s ‘face’ and organised their pathfinders and online resources. LibGuides also offers examples and reviews of their product here. Seneca Libraries also have a great manual for the creation of subject guides in LibGuides.

This morning I’ll scan the Twitter hashtag #libguides for more opinions and links. I notice that @crgalvin (Carmel from Trinity Grammar) has tweeted about signing up for LibCal to enable library room bookings. I have a feeling we’ll be discovering more and more possibilities as we build our version of LibGuides. Every example will demonstrate a different way of organising resources for example, we like how Trinity Grammar School uses the top tabs and drop-down boxes to organise thematic and curricular areas differently to Joyce Valenza’s tab use which could become too overcrowded for us.

Although we haven’t created our ‘front page’ yet, I’ve been impatient to start and have been resourcing LibGuides pages for Visual Arts, WritingLOTE (Languages Other Than English) and French. You’re welcome to have a look and more than welcome to leave any suggestions or constructive criticism. Of course I haven’t had the patience to read through any of the guides so I imagine I have created more work for myself in terms of things to repair later on.

Of course there are some fantastic resources for teacher librarians on LibGuides, for example, Springfield Township High School’s Spartan Guides for teacher librarians. Buffy Hamilton has some great stuff; I’m just looking at her school’s LibGuides page for Kindles which looks comprehensive. We’d be more than happy to hear from other school libraries who are using or thinking about using LibGuides for their online resources. Please come in and share your experiences in the comment section after this post.

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