Wednesday, December 16, 2015

TMC4 Program Shaping Up!

With just over six weeks until Treasure Mountain Canada 4, the program is shaping up! So what can you look forward to at this fourth edition of TMC? Here's the preliminary run-down.

An Integrated Super Conference and TMC Experience

This year's symposium is presented in partnership with the Ontario Library Association's Super Conference, and that means an enriched experience for attendees. The OLA is offering very attractive registration and pricing options. Registration for the full Super Conference experience includes TMC, or your registration for TMC only will include some Super Conference experiences. Here's how it looks.

Option 1: Full Super Conference (Includes TMC)
  • All keynote and spotlight speakers
  • Hundreds of workshops to choose from
  • Unlimited entrance privileges to Super Expo
  • Opening and Closing parties
  • OSLA Awards Reception
  • PLUS - all of Option 2

Option 2: TMC Friday & Saturday
  • OSLA Spotlight Speaker Wendy Newman
  • Access to all Friday workshops & Super Expo
  • Closing keynote, Wab Kinew, and reception
  • Dinner @ Joe Badali's with TMC Keynote Speaker David Cameron
  • Continental breakfast and boxed lunch, Saturday
  • Interactive TMC Research Symposium led by Dr. David V. Loertscher and Carol Koechlin; Focus speakers, Table Talks and papers by such learning leaders as Dr. Dianne Oberg, Monica Berra, Anita Brooks Kirkland, Cindy Van Wonderen, Diana Maliszewski, Alanna King, Deborah McCallum, Peggy Lunn, Judith Sykes, Gerald Brown and many more.
  • Special extended session to discuss future of school libraries in Canada in light of potential transformation of CLA

Find Out More!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Oracle and FaceSpace Explore Human Dimensions of Young Adult Use of Technology

Teacher-librarians are in a privileged position when it comes to teaching students about technology.  They have books to back them up.  As useful as they can be, it is neither technical manuals nor Dummies Guides to …  to which I am referring. I am talking about fiction that can safely transport students into worlds where they can see their peers interacting with technology to find solutions to their problems.  They can also see the pitfalls of using technology and draw their own conclusions about technology and, equally importantly, the varied motivations of people behind the technology.

Amongst my favorite books for inspiring students to ask questions about the uses and dangers of technology are Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother (2008) and For the Win (2010).  These are great works of social criticism as well as young adult adventure stories revealing how technology can serve both forces of oppression and liberation.  Even reluctant readers will often find these stories so engaging that they will be reluctant to put them down.

However, some students may be intimidated by the length of these books.  For those students whose first criteria is the (small) number of pages in the book, Orca has two short novels that will give middle school students the opportunity to reflect on why they need to ask questions about the motivations of others when they use social media.  Similarly, they will realize the importance of giving careful consideration to the consequences of the careless use of computers.  
The first of the titles is Oracle (2012) by former middle school teacher Alex Van Tol.  In this novel a student creates an anonymous advice blog to manipulate a popular girl into paying attention to him.  His dishonesty backfires, but not in a way that reads as a condemnation of the use of social media.  The novel explores social relationships that most students in middle school and junior high will recognize; it then reveals the benefits of responsible behaviour, both on and off-line, without seeming like a sermon.

The second novel is FaceSpace (2013) by Victoria Times Colonist arts and entertainment columnist Adrian Chamberlain. In this novel, the protagonist has to navigate his way through the complications that enter his life when he invents a cool friend to impress others and gain followers on social media.  Although the title suggests that this is a novel about technology, the story demonstrates that it is human nature that makes technology interesting.

What I like about these novels as teaching tools is the fact that they provide a human context and place the use of technology in familiar surroundings.  In our school library learning commons we can supplement the information that our students can derive from our newspapers and magazines, databases and technical manuals with works of fiction that set information in a more approachable human context.  And then we can invite our students to use their critical thinking skills to compare the world portrayed by the author with their own world.  Isn’t it wonderful to hear when they think!  

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

TMC4 Invitation to Participate

Growing Impact of Leading Learning:
Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada

Co-teaching for Deeper Learning
Innovation for Learning
Building a Learning Community

Contribute a paper: 
Follow the blog:
Share on Twitter: #tmcanada2016

Registration for full conference experience includes TMC! Or register for TMC at great rates!

TMC4 Program Highlights:

Friday January 29, 2016 9:00 am – 8:00 pm
  • OSLA Spotlight Speaker Wendy Newman - Bridging the Gap Between Us and “Them”
  • Many Super Conference sessions to choose from all day and EXPO too!
  • Closing Speaker Wab Kinew - Writer, Journalist, Associate Vice President for Indigenous Relations, The University of Winnipeg
  • Closing Reception for Super Conference
  • Opening TMC Dinner at Joe Badali’s with keynote speaker David Cameron - Research Director, People for Education; and challenge activity led by Dr. David V. LoertscherProfessor, San Jose State University School of Library and Information Science

Saturday January 30, 2016 8:00 am – 3:30 pm
  •  Continental breakfast and boxed lunch
  •  Interactive symposium led by Dr David V. Loertscher and Carol Koechlin
  •  Focus speakers, Table Talks and papers by such learning leaders as Dr. Dianne Oberg, Monica Berra, Anita Brooks Kirkland, Diana Maliszewski, Alanna King, Deborah McCallum, Peggy Lunn, Judith Sykes and many more.

Special Extended Program from 3:30 - 5:00
  • Focused discussion and action planning on the future of school libraries in Canada in light of the proposed formation of a Federation of Library Associations to replace CLA led by Liz Kerr and Anita Brooks Kirkland
  • Self funded dinner to follow for those who can stay and keep on working.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Treasure Mountain Research Retreat #22

Last week, along with many other loyal organizers, I assisted Dr. David Loerstcher to organize and facilitate the last U.S. TreasureMountain. It was held in Columbus Ohio and hosted by the famous INFOhio group. This symposium has provided voice and leadership opportunities to hundreds of school librarians over the last 26 years. It was during the 2007 event in Reno Nevada that Liz Kerr, Sandi Zwaan and I made a pact to create a similar opportunity for Canadian school library professionals. The success of our own TMC over the past 8 years has long surpassed our hopes and dreams and we look forward to TMC4 just a few months away.  

The theme this year in Ohio was, Start a Revolution in the Learning Commons and sparked great papers and passionate speakers and table talks. We started with engaging participants as leaders of innovation in their schools and districts and kept building the spirit of disruptive change and innovation throughout the two days we had together.

Some key messages:
“Learning Commons is an ideal disruptive environment to breed innovation” David Loertscher
“It’s the attitude of the maker we are building not the makerspace.” Bill Derry
“Use your camera, use your camera.” Joyce Valenza on Engaging Tools for Evidence Based Practice
“We want our learning commons to be a breeding ground for intellectual discourse.” Ross Todd

Commitment to leading the learning commons revolution was sealed with a BIG THINK activity that truly demonstrated the collaborative genius of the room! This last TM event also paid tribute to David Loertscher and his work over the years to support and enrich school libraries everywhere. You will find some awesome tributes here on this collaborative presentation

Thank you David. 
Created by Ross Todd

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Think you're not a researcher? Think again!

Teacher-Librarian and Action
Researcher Diana Maliszewski.
The TMC2016 Call for Papers was issued recently, and chances are there are quite a few people wondering how they, as practising teacher-librarians, could possibly write a research paper worthy of submission. Toronto teacher-librarian extraordinaire Diana Maliszewski may be just the person to reassure you, and give you confidence to share your own action research.

Diana is no stranger to research, and understands how it is closely linked to her life as a teacher-librarian. We are so very fortunate that Diana reflects on her practice through her wonderful blog, Monday Molly Musings, and initiates conversations with her wider professional learning network through Twitter as MzMollyTL.

The reality is that teacher-librarians integrate research into practice every day. The whole process of teaching is research in action: using feedback and assessment data to evaluate the efficacy of a particular approach and adjusting practice accordingly.

If you are contemplating writing a paper for TMC2016 but are unsure of how to proceed, then Diana's Monday musing from October 12, 2015 is a must-read. Please check it out!

Monday Molly Musing (October 12, 2015): Treasure Mountain Canada 4 - Return to Small Scale Researching

Monday, October 5, 2015

Leading Learning at Library 2.015 Online Conference

Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada will be featured in a session of the Library 2.015 Worldwide Virtual Conference, coming up on October 20, 2015. This is latest in a number of times that Leading Learning has been the topic of presentations and conversations beyond Canada's borders.

The presentation is based on a paper that Carol Koechlin and Anita Brooks Kirkland wrote for the International Association for School Librarianship's (IASL) 2015 conference, and is the latest is a growing list of international articles and presentations about Canada's new standards document for school library learning commons.

Library 2.015 Worldwide Virtual Conference

A Catalyst for Igniting Change: Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada 
Carol Koechlin & Anita Brooks Kirkland 
Tuesday October 20, 8:00 pm EDT

Exploring standards to transform learning in school libraries. Standards can indeed help measure Leading Learning does much more. By focusing on the needs of the learner, Leading Learning provides a framework for growth. Every school, no matter the status of its library program, can find itself in this framework and decide on tangible steps for improvement. As a catalyst for igniting the design of futures oriented learning the document positions the school library learning commons as critical to innovative pedagogical approaches for the new century. Participants will explore the potential of the new Canadian standards to drive school improvement and consider approaches to apply to their own transformations.

 Check out the free Teacher-Librarian Day pre-conference, Monday October 19, 4pm-9pm EDT.

This video introduces key concepts about Leading Learning, and is based on Carol and Anita's IASL paper.

TMC Blog List

Have a look at the right sidebar of this blog. You will see a heading called TMC Blog List. This is a list of blogs by Canadian teacher-librarians and/or others whose blogs are of particular interest to the community of school library practitioners and scholars in Canada. The list links you to each blog, and shows the most recent item posted.

Help Us Build Our List!

This is just the beginning of our list. Are you aware of other Canadian blogs that should be on our list? We would like to connect our own followers to the conversations relevant to current school library learning commons practice in Canada. We would also like to encourage more in our community to blog!

If you know of a blog that should be on our list, please let us know, either by commenting on this post, or emailing Anita Brooks Kirkland at: Please include TMC Blog List in the subject line of your email.

Looking forward to hearing from you!

Monday, September 28, 2015

TMC4 Call for Papers

Canadian Scholarly Research and Profession Writing Regarding School Libraries in Canada

Treasure Mountain Canada is pleased to announce the fourth biannual TMC symposium to be held in partnership with the Ontario Library Association in Toronto during the OLA Super Conference in January 2016. Special pricing arranged by OLA will enable delegates to attend TMC4 and extend their conference experience at preferred rates. Full information and registration will be available on the Super Conference website in early October.

Treasure Mountain Canada is a participatory learning experience designed to bring researchers and practitioners together to discuss and debate current Canadian research and scholarly writing which impacts on the role of school libraries vis-à-vis educational strategy and transformation. Papers and work from previous TMC experiences are archived for viewing and study at:

The first Treasure Mountain Canada, held in Edmonton in 2010, focused on “Transforming Canadian School Libraries to Meet the Needs of 21st Century Learners”. In Ottawa in 2012 the focus became Learning for the Future: Working Towards Revised National Standards for School Libraries in Canada. In Victoria in 2014 the focus was the launch of the CLA document Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada. TMC4 in Toronto will focus on deeper implementation of the National Standards, and evidence that the standards are making an impact on teaching and learning in Canada.

The goal of TM Canada is to make the school library a key area of academic debate. At this time, the TMC4 planning committee is pleased to extend an invitation to teacher-librarians and educators across the country for papers for the fourth publication which will be one of the essential resources for the January symposium. We suggest either teacher-research and/or academic research related to the theme and strands:

Theme: Growing Impact of Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Libraries in Canada
  • Co-teaching for Deeper Learning
  • Innovation for Learning
  • Building a Learning Community
We recognize the outstanding contributions so many of you are making to teaching and learning in Canada. Your work needs to be recognized by the greater education community – and documented, so that it can become part of the debate. Papers will be peer reviewed and posted online for study prior to the symposium. A checklist of specific requirements for papers is included below, and a handy guide for teacher-librarians new to action research is attached. Papers are required by January 4, 2016. Please send to:

For planning purposes, please let us know if you hope to submit a paper. If you have any questions or wish to discuss this initiative further contact Carol Koechlin by email or by phone 416 751 0889, or contact any member of the planning committee. Watch for more details coming soon regarding the TMC4 program and registration information on the OLA Super Conference site and in the next issue of SLiC (School Libraries in Canada). 

Planning Committee for Treasure Mountain Canada TMC4

Carol Koechlin, Library Program Consultant, Speaker, Author - email
Anita Brooks Kirkland, Consultant, Libraries & Learning – email
Liz Kerr, School Library Advocate - email
Jeanne Conte, OSLA President, Instructional Coordinator/Educational Librarian Curriculum and Instruction Support Services - email
Cindy van Wonderen, Co-Moderator for Voices for School Libraries Network,TDSB Instructional Leader - email
Jo-Anne Gibson, Co-Moderator for Voices for School Libraries Network Teacher Librarian, Manitoba – email
Professor David V. Loertscher , School of Library and Information Science, San Jose State University - email 

Checklist for TM Canada Papers

If print format: 

  • Approximately 1500-3000 words in length 
  • Digital MS Word document - Arial 12 point 
  • Single spaced and visuals (e.g. charts and graphs) embedded
  • References in any standard format 
  • Short biography of writer, about 200 words plus a digital photo would be appreciated 
  • Permissions, if previously published 
  • Alternative media formats such as websites and video are also welcome. 
  • Papers are needed by January 4, 2016. 
Note: Papers will be peer reviewed. Copyright to remain with the writer.

Questions about submissions should be directed to Carol Koechlin

Publication Editor:  Professor David V. Loertscher.

Saturday, September 26, 2015

Announcing TMC4!

Planning for Treasure Mountain Canada (TMC) 2016 is underway! TMC is a school library research symposium and think tank. Researchers, writers, leading thinkers and practitioners come together every second year to highlight, analyse, debate and study current research and scholarly authorship to promote continuous improvement in school librarianship in Canada.

Download Leading Learning
Theme: Growing Impact of Leading Learning: Standards of Practice for School Library Learning Commons in Canada

This theme will explore: co-teaching for deeper learning, innovation for learning, and building a learning community.

We are thrilled to be partnering with the Ontario Library Association Super Conference for this fourth TMC symposium and think tank. Special pricing will allow you to attend both TMC and the OLA Super Conference for a truly outstanding learning experience! OLA member rates are being extended to all TMC delegates.

Download the TMC / Super Conference flyer.

Visit the TMC website for information about previous TMC events. 

 OLA Super Conference 2016