Useful Blogs and Websites for School Library Staff

You may have seen my Professional Learning Series where I listed my top ten favourite websites for professional learning. Choosing just ten was really hard and I had to skip over some equally helpful blogs and websites. So, I have decided to create the ultimate list of helpful sites. This is something I will add to each time I find a new site. Please help me by leaving a comment suggesting your favourite sites.

The list is grouped according to the purpose for which I access it.

Top

It’s hard to know which category to put this website as it’s something I just couldn’t do my job without anymore. Of course, I am talking about Canva. The glorious, amazing thing that is Canva. If you haven’t used it before, my review here breaks down what it can do for you. Don’t forget that as a school librarian or teacher you are entitled to the Canva for Education, which is all the best features for free (because Canva is amazing).

Displays

Instant Display – I love, love, love this site. It has saved me so much time and work over the years. Alphabet sets, printouts, there is literally something for every theme or display you will ever think to create.

Free font sites like DaFont and 1001 Fonts are amazing places where you can download different fonts, install them on your computer and use them for your posters or displays. You can also search for specific fonts, like Harry Potter fonts or the font used in Diary of A Wimpy Kid.

STEM

Tinkering Child – Written by teacher librarian and STEM teacher Jackie Child, Tinkering Child is full of ideas for incorporating technology, coding, robotics and making into library lessons and the curriculum.

CSER Digital Technologies Education has free online MOOc courses, PD events and even a lending library, so you can try out some of the tech in your school library.

STEM Ed magazine, blog and podcast.

Book Lists, Literature and Australian titles

Children’s Books Daily – Brisbane teacher librarian and author Megan Daley’s blog is full of book lists, reviews, decor ideas and tips for getting kids reading. If you want to stay updated on the latest in the Australian book scene, Megan is your person.

LoveOZYA – for all the latest on publishing, authors and new Australian young adult fiction, look no further than the LoveOZYA site. It is inspiring and so helpful if you are looking to increase your library’s collection of Australian literature for our teen readers. There are also posters and recommended lists you can use and share. It’s a great way to stay up to date about new releases.

Edelweiss Plus – I love, love Edelweiss Plus. I use Edelweiss Plus daily to check in about publisher new book catalogues, review copies, reviews of new titles, publisher age guide ratings, subject and theme tags for books and finding specific titles for student requests. This is primarily helpful for overseas publishers and book releases, and I set my access to US trade to ensure I have access to that wider range of publisher listings, but I hope Australian publishers get on board this amazing resource.

Penguin Teachers – for teacher notes for all Penguin titles

Walker Book Classroom – teacher notes, resources, activities and more.

Allen and Unwin for Teachers – teacher notes, resources, book trailers, catalogues and more

Librarian Stuff

Linking Learning – website of Dr Kay Oddone, lecturer and researcher of teacher librarianship.

Don’t Shush Me is the website of school librarian Kelsey Bogan. Here she shares incredible posts on everything from readalike posters to Dynamic Shelving.

Hafuboti – Rebecca McCorkindale is an Assistant Library Director, Creative Director and self-described ‘Punk Rock Book Jockey’. On her blog, she shares her work in her public library. The great thing about Hafuboti is that everything is under Creative Commons Attribute/Share Alike, so you are free to use her artwork, signs and graphics, which are awesome.

Ontarian Librarian – Karissa is a Children and Teens services librarian at a public library in Canada. She shares book reviews, display ideas and I love her program ideas.

School Library Journal  

Tales from The Children’s Librarian – a great Australian based blog with ideas on sharing literature, lists of resources.

New School Librarian Handbook – everything you need to know with an amazing range of suggested resources and sites.

Librarian in the Middle – shares great tips and resources, especially around branding and advocacy

National Library of New Zealand – has many resources for supporting librarians.

School Librarians United podcast

Lori’s E-Musings – the website of teacher librarian Lori Korodaj, who shares updates in the world of school libraries and important reflections on the profession.

Elizabeth Hutchinson, UK school librarian, shares great blog posts, webinars, training and discussion groups.

KCBoyd – the website and blog of US school librarian AKA The Boss Librarian.

Discovering the Remarkable – website and blog of US school librarian Martha Bongiorno

Glenthorne High School Library – blog of UK school librarian Lucas Maxwell.

Reading Power – blog of Australian teacher librarian Anne Weaver.

Super Library Marketing – everything you need to know about social media, marketing and promotions for libraries.

Book Trailers

Allen and Unwin Book Trailers – a great range of book trailers for A&U titles.

Copyright

Smartcopying – knowing about copyright is really important for librarians. I always turn to Smartcopying when I have a question about copyright or sharing sources.

Copyright 4 Educators course – (just ignore the archived notice, sign up via the Google Form link and the team use the archive materials for each week’s work).

Advocacy

Students Need School Libraries – the SNSL campaign website was designed (I know, because I designed it) to be a tool for parents, school library staff and members of the community to aid them in advocating for school libraries. If you need resources, films, research, success stories, presentation notes and slides, brochures, links to other campaigns and resources, flyers – basically anything you need for advocacy, you can find it on the website. And please do use the contact page to reach out to the admin group if you have an idea for a new resource, have a success story or research article to share or want to become involved.

Every Library – US based advocate and defender of libraries and librarians.

Great School Libraries – UK based campaign to support school libraries.

Policy

ASLA Policy Pages –  if you are looking for policy examples, statements to reference or further research and resources related to policy, check out ASLA’s Policy menu. It’s been extremely helpful to me over the years.