February 29, 2012

A New Adventure!

I will never forget Superbowl XLVI.  It's not because of the New York Giants win over the New England Patriots.  It's not because Madonna performed during the halftime show.  It's also not because I was proud of my college dance troupe, The Southern University Dancing Dolls, performance with Madonna.  I will never forget this Superbowl because I won the Chicago Public Schools VITAL Grant.  Those who were present at the Superbowl party thought I had 'lost it' when I began screaming after reading my award email.   After many nights of writing and revising the grant proposal, the hard work paid off and I was awarded the grant.  

The CPS Department of Libraries VITAL grant supports the re-envisioning of high school library media centers to be hubs of 21st century learning in their schools.  This grant provides technology, ongoing training through personal learning networks, meaningful collaboration opportunities and program assessment.   My school, Wendell Phillips Academy, was one in five high schools in the district that was awarded the grant.  Some of the items awarded in the grant include:
  • iPads
  • NOOK eReaders
  • A MacBook laptop
  • A syncing cart
  • Assorted iPad peripherals and covers
  • Flip Camera
  • Gift cards to purchase apps and downloadable books  

Dena Pavlovic
Over the next couple of months, I will be working with a number of teachers at my school to create and teach lessons that will support Common Core Standards through the technology that has been awarded.  The plan is to begin teaching these lessons after PSAE testing.  The teachers are excited and so am I.  

Today I attended the VITAL kick-off meeting where Lisa Perez, Network Librarian for the Dept. of Libraries discussed the nuts and bolts of the grant.  Grant awardees will participate in an online community that will support grant administration.  They will also be responsible for providing some data and student artifacts for further evaluation of the grant's success.  Overall, it was really nice to discuss and share ideas with the other librarians that were awarded the grant.  The presentation from Barnes and Noble Assistant Store Manager, Dena Pavlovic was really informative.   I now have a 'game plan' on how I plan to implement the use of the devices.  

Dept. of Libraries Staff and Grant Awardees

I am so excited about this grant and the opportunities that it will bring.  My students are excited that they will now have a Street Literature book club at Phillips.  My 'regulars' in the library are elated that there will be more iPads for circulation during the lunch periods.  My teachers are excited that they can use additional technologies as an extension of the lesson taught.  Most importantly, my students will have the opportunity to use 21st century technology tools independently prior to college.  For this, I'm grateful.  

Stay tuned for more posts about this grant as well as other events that take place in the Wendell Phillips Academy High School Library Media Center.

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