Tuesday, October 26, 2010

SLJ Leadership Summit 2010

Beth and Bill on the train on our way to
SLJ Summit
On Friday and Saturday, I attended SLJ's Leadership Summit in Chicago with colleagues Bill and Beth. The theme of the conference was "The Future of Reading" and I came back with lots of new thinking.

The conference was packed with speakers who each had a different area of expertise when it comes to the future of reading.  I wasn't able to stay until the very end (I had to get to KSRA which was another fun day!) but I did hear several thought-provoking speakers while I was there.  Some of the highlights from the conference:

-I enjoyed Stephen Abrams opening talk setting up the conference.  I read his blog and follow him on Twitter and have learned so much from him. It was nice to hear him as the opening speaker. He shared the slides from his keynote on his blog which I am anxious to revisit soon.

-Donald Leu discussed some research surrounding new literacies. I would like to go back to his work and dig a bit deeper as there was quite a bit to digest. One of my favorite quotes from Leu was, "The Internet is this generation's defining technology for reading."  A summary of his talk can be found on SLJ's website. His slides can be found on Slideshare.

-Francey Harris brought a group of 4 high school students who were part of a panel discussing teens as readers and what they want/need from libraries. They were amazing students and their thoughtfulness and honestly will help us all think through our own work.

-Joyce Valenza shared her own questions about ereaders and ebooks and what they mean for libraries today.  She is so skilled at sharing so much great thinking in such a short time. I was able to hear her for the first time this summer at November Learning and was thrilled to be able to hear her speak again this week.

-Peter Gutierrez, a member of NCTE's Commission on Media, spoke on the role of pop culture and fan behaviors.  This is the first time I was able to hear him but I am hoping to attend his sessions next month at NCTE in Orlando.

-Chuck Follet shared ways in which several libraries are changing and growing.

-Catherine Snow shared great insights on why our students are not ready to deal with the sophistication of the text presented to them.

-The information that was shared by the Carnegie Corporation was incredible and I need to go back to their thinking sometime soon also.

Although Bill was not invited to the Red Carpet
at the Trailee Awards, he did enjoy his chocolate milk
and warm cookie!
One of the highlights of the conference was the evening event announcing SLJ's Trailee Awards.  If you have not had a chance to look at the 24 nominees in various categories, they are worth your time.  24 amazing book trailers created by students, adults and publishers.  I was very impressed with the student-created book trailers. Honestly, there was very little difference in the student-created book trailers and the publisher created book trailers. Just a reminder at how technology is allowing our students to create amazing projects.

It was great to meet Joanne and Jennifer
face-to-face at the Summit!

Talking to colleagues and networking was also a nice part of the conference. Having time to think through some things with local colleagues was nice.  We never get that kind of time at home and we need to figure out how to find more time to meet and talk.  I met and chatted with Mary Burkey of Audiobooker blog.  I learned so much about audiobooks in the short time I talked to her. I have never been much of an audiobook reader but am ready to give them another try now that I have her blog as a resource.  I was also able to meet two of the professors from my University of Alberta Teacher-Librarianship program-Dr. Jennifer Branch and Dr. Joanne de Groot. We had time to chat after the conference and it was so nice to visit face-to-face after having spent so much time in online classes, etc.  I also met a student who has been  in both of my classes and who I am anxious to learn from in terms of books for older readers.

I feel like I was introduced to many people's work at this event. I am hoping to take time in the next few weeks to look for more work by several of the speakers and to really dig into the ideas they shared.  It was definitely a worthwhile event for me and I am anxious to sort through my new learning.

I love how the conference was archived in so many places.  Revisiting the hashtag on Twitter (#sljsummit10) will help remind me of some of the learning I am forgetting. SLJ is doing a wonderful job of compiling things on their site and the SLJ Summit 2010 Flickr group is a fun way to revisit the conference. I think this is one of those conferences I'll be revisiting often over the next few months.

Thank you to SLJ for an amazing oppotrunity!


  1. Anonymous9:30 AM

    Thanks Franki, You have inspired me to pay closer attention to when SLJ does their summit next year. There are so many choices of conferences to attend.

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  3. It was so good to meet you this weekend, Franki! It's always fun to meet face-to-face...I enjoyed learning with and from you! And thanks for the great summary of the weekend!


    (I just deleted my first comment--realized I didn`t put my name in!)


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