Inquiry Post 2: Expanding my Personal Learning Network

This week’s blog topic is all about exploring how I plan to continue developing my own ICT skills and professional connections after LIBE 477 is over. Reflecting upon the networking and learning tools that have been discussed in this course, I have compiled a list of the top 10 resources I plan to use:


  1. Social Bookmarking: Delicious

I have created an account on this site and started adding online bookmarks with tags for useful teaching and learning resources as I come across them. I wish I would have used this tool from the very beginning of my UBC Teacher Librarian diploma because I have a whole mess of unsorted bookmarks saved on my laptop from links that I have gathered throughout the diploma. I like how Delicious allows me to access my bookmarks from anywhere and tag them with keywords to help find later.


Goal: During one of our LIBE 477 Google Hangout,s our instructor, Aaron, showed us how to automatically add any links that you favourite in Twitter to your Delicious account using a website called If This Then That . I plan to set up this feature and be more social on Delicious by adding other educational professionals so that I can see what they are bookmarking. I will also spend some time adding the bookmarks on my laptop to my Delicious account for easier access and use.

  1. Social Pinning: Pinterest

I already use Pinterest all of the time for finding inspiring ideas for library displays, and infographics to help teach information literacy. I pin ideas to my library board called bookspiration and follow other librarians who are doing the same!


Goal: I would like to contribute photos of my own library displays to share with the Pinterest community of librarians. I feel that sharing what I am doing as I progress along in my career is an important part of creating a personal learning network.

  1. Professional Reading:

In this course we read Will Richardson’s ebook titled Why School?: How Education Must Change When Learning and Information Are Everywhere. I found this book to be very interesting, applicable to education now, and inspiring. I have recommended it to several colleagues!

Goal: Before the end of the school year I plan to read another book by Will Richardson titled Personal Learning Networks: Using the Power of Connections to Transform Education. I have read several reviews that recommend this book to educators who want to expand their own learning communities.

Personal Learning Networks

  1. Social Networking: Twitter @lia_larson and @MSSpanthers

Before this course I only accessed twitter when I went to conferences to follow the conference hashtag. Being forced to engage with twitter in a more active way during LIBE 477 has opened my eyes to the amount of networking and professional resources being shared daily. I have started to follow more educators worldwide on my twitter account.

twitter screen shot

Goal: I have started a twitter account for my school @MSSpanthers and plan to create a list for educators at my school to follow, as demonstrated by Aaron during one of our Google Hangouts. I am more confident tweeting out on this account about school events and pics, but I plan to start using my own twitter account @lia_larson to share my own learning journey instead of just re-tweeting useful links and resources!


  1. Online Courses: UBC Diploma

I started taking courses towards my teacher-librarian diploma in 2012. It has been a great way to continue learning about libraries, technology, resources, and connect with out teacher-librarians while working in a secondary school library.

Goal: I plan to complete my diploma by 2016! 🙂


  1. My School: Teacher Talk

Every Thursday morning starting at 7:45 am my principal, Bill Lawrence, hosts a collaboration and learning meeting called “Teacher Talk”. It is open to all staff to come and share about their week, discuss educational readings, and get feedback from the group on issues in our classrooms/school. These meetings are a great way to network with other colleagues in the school, discuss new teaching strategies, and stay current on educational literature.

Goal: Last year we did a book study on It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens by Danah Boyd.

its complicated

This year I would like to put forward Richardson’s book Why School? for our book study to further explore the issues discussed in LIBE477.

why school

  1. My Library: Learning@Lunch

Last year I collaborated with our District Technology Coordinator to host Learning@Lunch sessions in our library for staff to learn about different tech tools to use in their classrooms. We had different “experts” present and our principal provided lunch to those who attended. It was a great way to network with colleagues and learn about new technology.

learning at lunch

Goal: We have not hosted any sessions this year as our District Technology Coordinator moved out of district. I would like to revive this program with our new coordinator and perhaps be a presenter myself on the resources available to educators in our district through Learn Now BC.

learn now bc

  1. My District: SD58 Connect

Our school district has a website to promote Pro-D, share resources, and discuss what’s happening in our classrooms and schools through blog posts (40 weeks of Learning).

connected 58

Goal: The blog was suspended while the District searched for a new Technology coordinator, but I would like to push myself to post on the blog this year when it is back up and running. I could share teaching resources and advocate for our libraries!


  1. Blogging:

I currently have a blog for this course and a WordPress site for my library.

wordpress screen shot

Goal: I would like to post more regularly to my library blog and add more educators to my Diig RSS blog feed to stay connected to what is happening in education on a national and international level. I need to make my library page more interactive and allow students and staff to engage with the site, instead of just posting upcoming events.


  1. Useful Websites: TeachBC

When I was looking around for ways to improve my personal learning network, I can across the BCTF’s new website where educators in BC can connect and share their teaching resources. I think that this is a great idea!

Teach BC


Goal: I plan to share some library resources on this site and check out what other librarians have contributed. If this site takes off it could be a wealth of information for educators in our province.

Well that’s it so far. I will keep you posted on how my 2015 goals shape up! What are your goals for 2015 to expand your personal learning networks?


4 thoughts on “Inquiry Post 2: Expanding my Personal Learning Network

  1. Whew! That’s a great list of professional development goals! I loved that you set a goal under each area for you to strive for over the next few years. You’ve set some ambitious goals that are very inspiring and absolutely useful and fantastic. I do hope you extend your influence further out into your school and district as Teacher-Librarians are natural leaders in their environment. So many good points, media, links and reflections. Great job! (do try and add some “tags” to your blog post to categorize them for later)


  2. Lots of great ideas and goals to increase your personal learning network. It has given me some ideas and inspiration for my personal learning as well. Pinterest is something I have been meaning to look into and I like the Learning@Lunch. It also reminds me to check out what is available in my own district. Thanks for sharing.


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