Reading Rate

I have been procrastinating with this assignment, most likely because I am trying to squeeze in my school work around my vacationing family here in Bend, OR.  But then I read Alison’s post and got motivated.  With the first link she presented, WSJ link, I read 420 words per minute,  and with the Staples link, I read 186 words (narrative text) in 32 seconds.   This motivated me to figure out my reading rate as Penny Kittle did with her students.   I chose the book If I Stay by Gayle Forman.  I saw this book on the many lists of YA literature posted by my classmates, and also enjoyed Penny Kittle’s excerpt from the book.  When we landed in WA on Friday, I saw this book on my niece’s bookshelf and grabbed it!

From this exercise I read 18 pages in 10 minutes, multiplied by 6, that would be 108 pages of this book in an hour.  I found the type in this book to be large and not many words per page, so I am not sure this is a true reflection of my reading rate.   I do know I read much  slower when I am reading a journal article.  I think, like Jennie Grant in her blog mentioned, I can read 3 pages in 10 minutes.   There is much more to try to take in and comprehend in that type of article.  Depending on the topic of the article, it can be a long and drawn out.

However, this exercise was very interesting and certainly could be a great tool and motivator for students.  Though as Penny mentions, “…but numbers alone do not tell the story.  Many students see a decline in reading rate because they begin to choose more difficult books as they become more confident readers” (p. 28).   I also think it depends on the book and your own reading level.   I did not find the language in this particular book, If I Stay, to be difficult, in comparison to say Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker or something of that nature.

I also laughed out loud when I read Jennie’s comment on the Hick’s article, because after reading both of the Coiro articles, I got very frustrated with the number of links and trying to figure out what to read first, second, etc.  It was not neatly laid out like the journal articles with a beginning, middle, and an end.  I also think this was a ploy by Renee Hobbs to get us to see the difference!


Hicks, T. (2012). Reading and writing e-books and immersive texts. Digital Is. National Writing Project.

Kittle, P. (2013). Book Love (pp. 1 – 167).







Annotating…A Great Way to Learn, Question and Share Ideas!

This week we were asked to annotate one of the articles we read for class.  I downloaded the PC version and found the tool fun to use.   It was very intuitive but some of the tools did not make sense to me, like having to spend time making a cloud shape and then figuring out how to put text into it.  Takes too much extra time.   I have used similar tools within adobe such as the highlighting tool, but I found this to be much better because there were more tools to utilize.  I typically use Evernote or hand write out notes on paper when reading an electronic journal article.  I can see how this would be a great tool for collaboration and most likely this is where the shape usage might come in handy?  I really liked the ability to include a link to another article (or internet article)!  Linking to another allows another reader to see the connection.   I still like writing out my own notes. It helps to retain the reading more and comprehend more of the material.  By writing your own notes, I feel at least, you can put more into your own words.  Lastly, because I actually read this entire article and wrote out my notes first, and then went back to annotate, I think I missed some opportunities to annotate items the second time around.

LSC531 Annotation Assignment



Coiro, J. & Dobler, E. (2007). Exploring the online reading comprehension strategies used by 6th grade skilled readers to search for and locate information on the Internet. Reading Research Quarterly 42(2), 214 – 257.

Hicks, T. (2012). Reading and writing e-books and immersive texts. Digital Is. National Writing Project.

#LSC 531 Top 10 List for Book Love by Penny Kittle

When I first started reading this book, I realized that she was talking about me.  I read in HS, but not a ton.  And I now realize how vital reading is to our lives, wellbeing, and our culture.  I had a hard time bringing this list to 10 items.  I also dogeared many pages, which I do not typically do, but so much of it spoke to me.  Here are my top 10 for Penny Kittle’s Book Love:

10.  Reading hurdles – “once a student is tangled in a text, however, frustration impedes understanding and cripples the will to read” p.12

9.  Reading stamina-  I never realized this and was very impressed with her calculation of pages read, etc.

8.  “Creating realistic and challenging reading goals” – I loved this and want to try it with myself and my kids.

7.  All of the stories of success – Keith, Taylor, Nick, Jacob, Dalton, and of course Crystal, whose story made me cry.

6.  Loved her analogies with the castle doors and gates.  What a wonderful visual for all of us!

5.  Book talks – These can be done by anyone in any venue.  Public, school, and academic libraries.  Not just English teachers.

4.  “Test scores are being used to condemn an entire school based on a few students – people believe these tests actually measure who can read.  What are we comparing?” p. 39

3.  “Students read differently because they are reading what is personally  meaningful” p.88

2.  “Most books have questions at the center of them, when we step back and think about them, we often understand more” p.99

And the number one choice for my top ten list……

1. “Because you aren’t testing me.  If I don’t understand something, I just go back and re-read it.  I don’t worry about knowing what is going to be on the test, so I’m actually able to read to just understand it” p. 103

I had so many other pages dogeared with quotes and ideas.  It was difficult coming up with 10 items only!  What I loved about this book the most, was the true dedication Penny Kittle has to her students.  She is a gem.  The support she gets from her principal is also very key to many of the successes she has had.  What I loved most of all was the conversion of the non-reading teachers who stood up and “poo-poo’ed” her school wide reading time.   This was a true testament to her commitment to reading and helping raise awareness of the issue of reading in schools in this country.


Kittle, P. (2013). Book Love: Developing Depth, Stamina, and Passion in Adolescent Readers. Heinemann: Portsmouth, N.H.

Reflective Essay #1 LSC531


This course has brought many issues to light for me.   I wasn’t originally going to take this because I am still unsure of the direction I want to go with my library degree, and to a certain extent, I am hoping I will fall in love with some part of this MLIS program and will not have to decide.  I like too many parts and pieces.  I currently work in a public library.  I have enjoyed it, but I am thinking of focusing more on an academic environment.  Nevertheless, what I am finding as I am reading and listening to several of my classmates, who are already YA Librarians or School Librarians, this material really excites me.  Somehow I want to incorporate youth or young adults into my career; I just am not sure what role that will be.  In addition, I am a parent of two teens and one tween.  I enjoy being with them, for the most part!   I enjoy what they are reading and enjoy helping them find things they like to read.  We try to read aloud together as much as we can.  YA literature is a great genre.    Many of the issues we have read about and discussed have been very interesting. Because I wear that other hat of parent, it has been an interesting lens to look through & knowing what my children are doing in school gives me an interesting perspective.  I have been able to reflect on what some of the authors are discussing not only for my library career, but also as a “parental unit”.   There is a lot more to digital literacy, librarians, our entire educational system, and the future of libraries, than meets the eye.  So much more than I originally thought.

(, 2014)

This class has certainly been an adventure thus far.


What have also been very interesting to me are the tools we have been using to discuss and share ideas with one another.   I have always loved using technology and at one point in my career considered HRIS, but I really did not want to program.  It has been fun playing with new tools.  Although I sometimes hate being on my iPhone or on my laptop constantly, I am also working in the same environment as a teenager.  By actually behaving in the same way as a teen, it has given me some insight into the world my daughter and most teenagers are conducting themselves.   Twitter is an entire world unto itself and so much information exists there, more than I truly realized.   I wish I had been using it sooner.   I have also enjoyed Google hangout in particular.  I took an on-line course earlier on through the GLIS School and it was very challenging for the discussion/sharing portion. We only used instant messaging type tools.  I enjoy seeing faces in Google Hangout, and listening to what everyone has to say.  The discussions via Titanpad and Twitter are also helpful.  I am still learning how to concisely tweet a thought or comment.  I have difficulty whittling all of my thoughts down into one great statement.   But it is fun to get tweets back from classmates or a comment and I enjoy doing the same for them.   Storify was quite an adventure, but again a fun tool.  I kept trying to show my children how cool it is, but of course they were all rolling their eyes!  Everything that we have shared on Flipgrid, Google Hangout, Storify and Twitter has been invaluable.

One of the other elements of this course has been digital literacy and the importance of it for youth, adolescents and young adults.   We have read many articles that discuss the need for it and the need for HOMAGO, however, not every child has that opportunity.  I found this image below.

For me it really drives home the need for libraries to exist and to provide digital literacy at public libraries, including digital media. (United Way Greater Austin, 2014)

One of the many other issues we have discussed from our readings has been the necessity of Librarians having the technical background and knowledge of digital media.  All of which is necessary for the 21st Century.  Librarians need to understand and use the array of tools for learning and fun, but also need to be able to convey the ethical issues, and any other issues surrounding the burgeoning amount of information that is changing everything around us.   In Lisa Tripp’s (2011) article, “Digital Youth, Libraries and New Media Literacy”, she emphasizes this necessity – understanding and usage of technology by librarians themselves.   Tripp states, “librarians also need to develop skills in mentoring young people through different stages of these activities and helping them mobilize their interest-driven activities with media toward new areas of learning and expertise” (p. 337).   As I move toward becoming a Librarian, I can see mentoring a very key skill, and so important in whatever setting I end up.  Youth need guidance and they need some parameters to learn and grow, such as helping them figure out what is credible and reliable information (Harris, 2011).

Youth also need to feel less “invisible” and more “credible” themselves. (Lankes, 2008).

Some tweets from my classmates on credibility for youth.

I appreciated so much of what Lankes (2011) and Harris (2011) discussed in their articles.  What I took from Lankes turned some of my own thoughts about the internet and youth and changed my viewpoint, particularly regarding youth becoming experts.    Harris also pointed out similar ideas with using “bad” websites as teaching points to help youth understand what a reliable website is and what reliable really means.

From listening to many of the videos regarding YOUmedia, the viewer can see many of the youths have gained confidence doing what they are doing in that space.   If more of these programs were all over the U.S, I wonder how much it would change the landscape of our educational system and many other youth related issues?  Many youths would flourish and grow given the opportunities such as YOUMedia.  These youth of today are also the future users of libraries.

Libraries can accomplish this as well, as seen from this article about the Nashville Public Library.  They are doing all sorts of great things at this library for both adults and youth.

Although we have not discussed this article in, New Media, New Challenges: The Library and Multi-Media Literacy in Higher Education, by Mundt (2011), the theme of the article has the same overarching ideas Lankes and Harris discuss,  Mundt (2011) states, “successful integration of multimedia literacy into higher education settings may require that instructors closely examine traditional pedagogies, and explore and experiment with new media” (Mundt, 2011, p. 51).   Mundt (2011) also states, much as Lankes did, that “libraries are ideally suited to provide new kinds of learning spaces that support the acquisition of skills required for success in contemporary society, including those needed to be multimedia literate” (p. 52).   Youth, adolescents and young adults need to acquire skills at each step of their education.   It should not stop after high school, nor should it after college.  Additionally, I think some of the ideas in this article are also what Lankes was touching upon in his video (2012), that librarians, particularly in academic libraries, need to gain more credibility within their college or university; gaining the confidence of faculty and instructors.   Renee Fratantonio tweeted about an article that touches upon this same issue of “stereotypes” of librarians. If you have not already read this, it is  a very interesting issue.

This study gave me a little pause that it has even been studied.  However, I can see why it has been since the role of the librarian is in the midst of a tipping point, moving away from old traditional ways toward very new and exciting approaches to technology and information.

I look forward to the rest of this course and to learning more about different aspects of youth competencies.  I am still trying to figure out what I want my final project to be about, but as I read Mundt’s article, I think it might spur me to look further into digital literacy in an academic environment. I need to give it more thought.  The Frances Harris article was so interesting to me as well that maybe I can think about something from there to focus on?   I know there will be more coming our way to think about and learn about ;  how my role as a future librarian can somehow make an impact.  It has been a packed three weeks and I look forward to the remaining time we have together in class.


Acquiring my first digital badge for LSC531

I have just completed my first ever Storify for this class.  It was based on one key idea, “Young Adults Can Become Authorities”, which I learned from reading “Trusting the Internet: New Approaches to Credibility” by David Lankes. It took me some time to figure out how to frame my points using this tool, but once I got the hang of it, it was very fun!  I kept trying to show my children because I think it is a very cool tool to use for their own assignments in school.  During this mini-project, I also learned about Digital Badges. I used many different elements – tweets from classmates, YouTube, and images, to create my Storify, and attempted to use Instagram. Much to my 13 year son’s dismay, I practiced posting to my Instagram account by posting a photo of him.  I do have an account, but hardly use it.  I mostly use it to keep tabs on my children; like many teens they both utilize Instagram quite a bit.   Please click on my link below to see my Storify –