Monday, August 25, 2014

Digital Shift is back for 5th year

Digital Shift is an all day online event produced by Library Journal and School Library Journal with numerous co-sponsors.  This professional development opportunity (scheduled for October 1, 2014) is self-described as follows: "Now in its 5th year, The Digital Shift: Libraries @ the Center virtual conference will focus the attention of library professionals on libraries’ central role in the transformation of our culture from analog experiences to digital experiences."

I have attended in the past and highly recommend registering - the keynotes, presentations and live chats are valuable -- and if you cannot attend the entire time, archives of sessions are usually available to registrants until the end of the year. This year's theme is Libraries @the Center and that promises some intriguing work on how libraries can adapt and adopt changing technologies.

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Girl Rising - Must see documentary

Recently, I watched Girl Rising, a documentary which had been listed on Library Journal’s best documentary/DVD list (more on those choices later). Girl Rising is about the power of education to change the world. It tells the story of 9 girls – in Cambodia, Haiti, India, Nepal, Egypt, Ethiopia, Peru, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan. Each worked with an author (like Edwidge Danticat for Haiti), most play themselves in the movie, and an actor (such as Cate Blanchett or Liam Neeson) reads each story.

Girl Rising is a very impactful film; some are aspects are very sad, some will make you angry and many will give you hope.  The documentary runs 103 minutes and Girl Rising is so powerful that I would suggest watching parts at a time.  For example, Junior and Senior advisories or Geography or Social Justice classes would find much to discuss through both the film and the accompanying web site. Here is the official trailer:

After sharing the stories of these girls (Sokha, Wadley, Yasmin, Suma, Asmera, Ruksana, Senna, Mariama, and Amina) Girl Rising‘s Call to Action asks viewers to do three things:
  • Share the story of Girl Rising and raise awareness
  • Invest – consider a donation to help fund programs promoting education for girls
  • Stand with girls on policy issues
Founding partner Intel has been joined by an impressive list of contributors and several international non-profit organizations.

Other documentaries from the Library Journal’s list of best-sellers in 2014 include Chasing Ice (about global warming; trailer here) and Gasland (about fracking; trailer here) . The 2014 list is not yet available online, but here is Library Journal’s June2013 list of best-selling documentaries which shows the film Bully as number one – we have a copy available at New Trier (trailer here) and are looking forward to the upcoming Winnetka Public Library’s program on that documentary this fall.