Sunday, December 14, 2008

I wanted to share my experience with a visit by author Jennifer Anne Kogler to my middle school on Friday. Jennifer recently published her second book, The Otherworldies. Jennifer is just 27, a recent Princeton graduate and currently a student at Stanford Law School. She knows how to relate directly to students and engage them while promoting the joy of reading, how writers can get ideas and successfully complete writing projects, and issues of plagiarism. She had all our students enthralled throughout her talk and keen to ask questions during the Q & A portion. Many of them even lingered afterwards to get in one more question. I would highly recommend her as a guest author for other schools. Please feel free to write me back for more information. You can get in touch with Jennifer and learn more about her at her website at

Here’s a little more on her book: In The Otherwordlies, Fern is a seventh grader who has always been a bit different and something of an outcast. Her family, though, including her popular twin brother, have always supported her and tried to make her feel “normal.” Then, one day she discovers to her shock and dismay that she is actually adopted and is an otherworldly, the “PC” term today’s vampires use for themselves. She finds herself immediately placed at the center of an age-old struggle between two warring vampire groups. The book is not only a real page turner; it also ponders issues of bullying, being an outsider, what constitutes family, and how who we are is based on our choices, not our background.

21st Century Skills VoiceThread

One of the questions we keep getting asked when we advocate for the importance of strong school libraries for our students is "What do teacher librarians do that classroom teachers don't already do?" and "what role do teacher librarians play in technology?" In an effort to answer these questions, the other teacher librarians in my district and I created this VoiceThread message:

We emailed a link to this message to all our district teachers, staff, administrators, and board members. We plan to do more advocacy efforts, so anyone reading this, please offer your input on what we can add, improve, etc.