The Journey of a International School Librarian

I joined Medium as the platform to use for my professional development goal. However, once I started to explore this website, I discovered that I will continue to use this as a visual diary/idea generating tool to keep track of my journey working overseas. Yes, I do have a journal but this would be something out of my comfort zone (not a blogger). Additionally, I will be able to build and created new contacts with other humans and ideas in this world.


What life is, we know not. What life does, we know well. — Lord Perceval

My professional development plan for 2016–2017 will be how to effectively use online research tools. I will be focusing on the following:

  1. Navigational techniques
  2. Primary vs. Secondary Resources
  3. Comparing Websites
  4. How to site accurately

For my challenge, I needed to find the following that would help support me in my professional development:

  • 1 book
  • 2 articles
  • streaming webinar

I found this book by searching on the website

I did notice that many of the books listed were very dated (2004 anyone?). This book was published in 2015 and it had some great reviews on how to help students thrive in research process.

To quote Goodreads:

Researching in a Digital World: How do I teach my students to conduct quality online research?

by Erik Palmer (Goodreads Author)

3.93 · Rating Details · 14 Ratings · 3 Reviews

“In this step-by-step guide, classroom veteran Erik Palmer explains how to teach students at all grade levels to conduct deeper, smarter, and more responsible research in an online environment. You’ll find practical lesson ideas for every stage of the research process and dozens of tips and strategies that will build your students’ internet literacy, establish valuable academic habits, and foster skills for lifelong learning.” — publisher.

When searching for a professional article, I found through the website International Association of School Librarianship the basic steps in the research process. See below the description and link to the page. I found it to be simple and clear of what expectations there are in the research process.

Basic Steps to the Research Process
This site takes users step-by-step through the research process, with easily-located tip sheets for specific parts of the process. The tip sheets include: Selecting a research topic; Writing a statement of purpose; Brainstorming research questions; Finding information within sources; Citing sources; Writing a conclusion. The site was developed by Holly Samuels, a school librarian; it is suitable for school levels from upper primary through to senior high school.

I needed to find information on how to differentiate primary vs. secondary sources. Through the website Ithaca College Library I found a page devoted to that subject. It includes: definitions, examples and videos to help clarify any concerns.

My final challenge was to find a streaming webinar. I found one on YouTube that has had 15,766 views and is most appropriate for kids from 12–14 years old. I feel this will be a valuable video to share since it covers questions students should consider if a website is valid or not.

I also am a huge fan of TED TALKS and one of my favorite videos that continues to inspire me is found below. ENJOY!

Building up my professional contacts. I will be meeting another school librarian tomorrow morning! She works at another International School here in Busan, South Korea. I’m excited to meet her and to see what fun events we can plan together.