Friday, December 11, 2015

Andrew Stark: Understanding Space in the Library Landscape

At our most recent network meeting, hosted at UWCSEA East, we had the pleasure of Andrew Stark, Head of Libraries at The Southport School in Queensland, Australia, speak on the topic of "Understanding Space in the Library Landscape."

To read the text of his presentation -- click here.

We did video him, but the audio isn't the best.  Still, it's better than nothing.

To watch his presentation -- click here or see below.

Note that Andrew instituted the International Librarian Symposium in 2014 at The Southport School.  The next one -- in 2016 -- will be on the theme: "Space and Place; Power and Purpose."  Registration is now open!

Sunday, September 27, 2015

Two calls for papers/presentations: reThinking Literacy -- and -- AFCC

October 1st is the deadline for papers for the Asian Festival of Children's Content (AFCC) which next year has a focus on Japan -- though not every presentation has to be about Japan -- it's just that they do a country focus each year.  Guidelines -- for either the Writers and Illustrators Conference or the Teachers Congress and Parents Forum -- can be downloaded from their website:

The April 21-23 conference "reThinking Literacy" is now accepting presentations -- on a rolling acceptance basis.  In many ways, this is an evolution of our own past "Hands on Literacy" conferences, though longer in time and perhaps more interested in how technology supports literacy.  I do hope some of our members will present and attend.

Key learning points of the IB librarians workshop held Aug15

I had the opportunity to participate in the IB Category 1 Diploma Programme (Librarians) workshop that was held in UWCSEA East in Singapore from 21 to 23 August 2015.

The facilitator was Dianne McKenzie, who is a library consultant and teacher trainer based in Hong Kong. 15 participants (from Singapore, Japan, China, Vietnam, Canada, UK, US etc) attended the librarian workshop. The workshop aims to develop strategies that support the diploma programme, with a key focus on the extended essay.

The workshop started off with a discussion of objectives, which include definition of role of school librarian and development of strategies to support school librarian in the role. There was a wide range of group activities and presentations (eg. Design your perfect library, Persons that your group think best personify the qualities in IB mission statement, Application of IB learner profiles etc). A key point was the active participation as we discussed library’s role in IB standards and practices, academic honesty, approaches to learning and so on.

The learning point that I had particularly found interesting is the connection between international mindedness and cultural intelligence. The novelist Chimamanda Adichie aptly told the story of how she found her authentic cultural voice in a TED presentation The danger of single story. There was also active discussion on perspectives on international mindedness from IB community members in the blog The workshop ended with an excursion to the Changi Museum, which was an opportunity for us to have a better understanding of the importance of international mindedness.

I came away with a deeper appreciation of how library may apply to support international mindedness, learner profiles and information literacy from this engaging workshop.

Sep 2015

Monday, August 17, 2015

Supporting digital literacy and 21st century learning through the school library


The School Library Association of Victoria conference “It’s a digital world,” held recently in Melbourne, was a good opportunity to reflect on the digital environment that is shaping our personal, work and social lives and to ask, What are the implications for us as educators? What are the imperatives for new literacies, including digital literacy and 21st century skills? How can international frameworks can guide the development of digital literacy in our schools? And how can digital devices and tools enrich the learning environment to support the development of skills, attitudes and understandings students need to be successful, effective citizens of the 21st century?

 I had the opportunity to attend this conference and present the keynote address. The conference was opened by Hon. James Merlino,  Victorian Minister for Education and Deputy Premier. It was fascinating to hear of the Minister’s vision for education and innovation in Victoria.

This was followed by a presentation by Mr Marco DiCesare, Principal of Caroline Chisholm Catholic College and SLAV School Leader of the Year 2014. Marco demonstrated his strong belief in the value school libraries and talked about his role in the revitalization of libraries in two schools he has led. Both speakers were inspirational and set a great tone for the conference, asserting the important place of school libraries in education.

My presentation was “Digital literacy, 21st century skills and information fluency.” My goal was to provide an overview of current international research, documentation and trends regarding digital literacy, and offer some insight into our practice at AIS.
I began with a look at our students today, the characteristics, attitudes and understandings of the digital generation, and international studies that add to our own observations.
A key point was the imperatives this drives for the development of digital literacy and 21st century skills in our schools.
I referenced some international frameworks for 21st century learning and digital literacy.
I then spoke about the AIS libraries initiative - framework for 21st century skills and information fluency. There was also some discussion of the Student Research Guide that accompanies the framework, and a look at some digital tools that can support 21st century learning. I closed with some consideration of further implications, including assessment and reporting of digital literacy, and the broader implications for our (teacher librarian) profession.
I also had the opportunity to lead a workshop, “Supporting inquiry and digital literacy through the library.” This was intended as a guide to participants who wish to develop a (online) resource for their school/library which supports the inquiry process and digital literacy of their students. It focused on the process, and I provided a lot of online support material that participants could use: clarifying purpose; considering framework/structure; platform options; tools for students; advocacy. During the workshop there was a lot of time provided to talk, and to look and suggested resources online.

There was opportunity for me to learn from other practitioners in two other concurrent workshop sessions. I heard about Joy Burlak’s evidence-based project to teach digital literacy to Year 7 at Sunbury Downs Secondary College. Later Wilma Kurvink showed the renovation of library spaces at Wesley College to meet the needs of 21st century learners: zones for collaborating, storytelling, sharing, creating, reflecting and learning.

The closing library design panel reinforced many of the ideas presented by Wilma, each panelist giving their particular context for library renewal.

This was a stimulating and exciting conference. The digital environment we now work in has redefined the role of the teacher librarian. It calls for a new skillset and expertise. How does it shape the way we work with teachers, students, curriculum leaders? This dialogue is taking place in school library associations around the world, and it’s a continuing conversation we need to have.

Our AIS framework, research guide, and other resources, can be found at

Presentations and workshop notes will be accessible on the SLAV website

Linda Twitchett

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Welcoming Social - Fri Aug 21.... and a new online sharing space for us TLs in Asia....

There's a new Facebook group for teacher-librarians working in Asia, started by Dianne McKenzie, called Asia School Library Connection.

I would encourage you all to join.  I think it's a nice complement to the ECIS iSkoodle one.  Dianne, as many of you know, has been in Hong Kong for many years, most recently at Discovery College and Renaissance College, but has now gone freelance, with a special focus on IB Workshops.

Her blog is Library Grits -- and her website is School Librarian Connection

She's leading an IB Diploma Librarians workshop at our East campus Fri-Sun, Aug 21-23, and I thought it would be nice to meet some of the people attending -- and catch up with our network members.  So we are hosting a little wine and cheese thing in Barb Reid's primary library starting about 5pm that Friday.  (It's "Meet the Mentor" - i.e., homeroom teacher - that night for high school, so the Secondary Library is being used for presentations.)

Click here for an RSVP form to the Friday, August 21, 5pm Welcoming Social.

Would love to see you then -- if not, remember, our first meeting of the year will be on Wednesday, September 16th, at the new Dulwich College Singapore campus in Laura Taylor's library - 4:00 for 4:30pm start.

Sunday, May 24, 2015

And the winners are.... Red Dot and Readers Cup

With over 5,000 votes cast in total and 10 schools participating, the overall Singapore winners of the 2014-2015 Red Dot Book Award are:

Early Years:
  • 1st place:  Going Places
  • 2nd place:  Just Imagine
  • 3rd place:  A Boy & his Jaguar
Younger Readers:
  • 1st place:  Battle Bunny
  • 2nd place:  Captain Coconut & the Case of the Missing Bananas
  • 3rd place:  A Boy Named Harry
Older Readers:
  • 1st place:  The Fourteenth Goldfish
  • 2nd place:  El Deafo
  • 3rd place:  Rooftoppers
Mature Readers:
  • 1st place:  I am Malala
  • 2nd place:  We Were Liars
  • 3rd place TIE:  The Sky So Heavy -- AND -- A Monster Calls
Note that each school also has its own winners -- and participating schools are given those results to advertise as they will.

The 6th annual Readers Cup competition was held after school Thursday, May 21st, at the Singapore American School (SAS).  This year we experimented with allowing up to two teams per school per category -- and consequently had over 40 teams from 12 schools participating.  We also added two new ways to win:  a Book Cover competition and a Book Trailer competition.

Younger Readers
    1st place:    United World College - East - Team 1
    2nd place:    NPS International School - Team 1
    3rd place:     Canadian International School - Lakeside - Team 2
Book cover:  NPS International School
Book trailer:  Singapore American School

Older Readers
    1st place:  Singapore American School - Team 1
    2nd place: Canadian International School - Lakeside - Team 1
    3rd place:  Dulwich International College - Team 2

Book cover:  Singapore American School
Book trailer: Singapore American School

Mature Readers
    1st place:  United World College - Dover - Team 1
    2nd place:  Singapore American School
    3rd place: United World College - East

Book cover:  United World College - Dover
Book trailer: United World College - Dover

Our sponsor this year was Closetful of Books and its owner, Denise Tan, had the honor of handing out the trophies to the first-place teams.    A $500 donation of books from Closetful of Books & ISLN will be made in the name of each first-place winning team.

The chosen charity is Book Reach, which focuses on school libraries and promoting literacy in Nepal.  It was started by Doreen Johnstone, a former Tanglin teacher (and whose husband was a Dover UWC teacher).  Doreen wasn't in Singapore at the time of our event, but she will visit each of the winning schools in order to explain her work in Nepal on behalf of children and school libraries.
Many thanks to the SAS teachers/librarians -- Kate Brundage, Rosa Shin-Gay, and Scott Riley -- for everything they did to host the event.  (Anyone interested in being the venue next year??)  Barb Reid (UWC East) and Meg Johnson (AISS) were the other committee members who deserve special thanks.  There is so much work that goes into an event like this.  The Readers Cup committee is looking for new members for next year.  Contact Barb Reid ( if you are interested -- or if you have questions or feedback about this year's event.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Looking ahead to the 2015-2016 Red Dot Books

As you know, this year we are going to produce our Red Dot shortlist by early June -- rather than early November.

Please recommend books to us using the form below.  

Criteria in choosing books:
  • Mix of genres, e.g., fiction, nonfiction, poetry, graphic format
  • Balance of boy/girl main characters
  • Balance of nationalities
  • Published (in English) within the last 4 years (i.e., 2012, 2013, 2014, or 2015)
  • The shortlists will consist of 8 books at each level
  • Preferably only #1 if in a series
  • Preferably no repeat of an author from previous years
  • Preferably books that encourage Text-Text, Text-Self, and/or Text-World connections for students (i.e., books worth talking about)

Alternatively, click here to join our Red Dot Nominations Group in GoodReads and put books on the Group bookshelves.
This same information is on the Red Dot website under the "2015-2016 Longlists" tab.

If you're interested in being on the Red Dot committee, please contact Katie Day ( as soon as possible.  It's almost the end of March, which means the next two months will be solid reading time, in order to have lists ready in early June.

Post-PD Summary: Librarians' Lunch & TeachUp 2015 @ UWC East

Last Saturday, March 14, there was a morning and an afternoon opportunity for professional development.

The inaugural TeachUp event, held at UWCSEA East, included two sessions by librarians.

TeachUp 2015 - link to shared folder of resources
-- Kim Beeman (Shrewsbury Int'l School, Bangkok) & Karen Blumberg - DIY PD
-- Katie Day & Barb Reid - Best Value eBooks + eTexts

Then we had our Librarian's Leisurely Lunch, a smaller group, with three sessions -- or focused conversations.

-- Kim Beeman & Karen Blumberg - Digital Literacies
-- Angie Erickson (UWC Dover MS Literacy Coach) & Katie Day - The Best of the Best: Discovering Children's and YA Literature
-- Linda Twitchett & Yvonne Barrett - Information Literacy at AIS

Kim and Karen on stage....
Yvonne and Linda on stage....

We all enjoyed the chance to talk over food and wine -- and we'd like to have something similar next year.  To be discussed at the upcoming AGM/meeting -- at Tanglin, Senior Library, 4:00 for 4:30 start on Monday, April 27th.

FYI:  Angie and I ended our talk by inviting people to contribute to a new Google+ Community called "Reading Constellations" -- which you are all welcome to join.

We're interested in crowd-sourcing pairs or small bundles of books that you like to recommend to students - for whatever oblique connection.  E.g., I just posted re "Liar" by Justine Larbastier and "We were Liars" by E. Lockhart under the heading "Lies and terrible family secrets," and Angie recommends pairing "To Kill a Mockingbird" with "Jasper Jones" by Craig Silvey under the heading "Discrimination and crime and coming-of-age".

I think of these constellations as micro-lists, where titles linked by a common Subject Heading are like macro-lists, and the kinds of lists our library systems let us create (e.g., Resource Lists in Destiny) are mini-lists. 

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Readers' Cup -- all you need to know

Click here for a Google Doc outlining all the information about the Readers' Cup competition, being held on May 21st this year -- at the Singapore American School.

As we're always learning and experimenting -- striving for the best experience for all our students -- each year we change a few things. 

This year, in an effort to increase participation, provide more ways to win, and encourage deeper engagement with the books, there are three separate ways a team can participate in each category:
  • the Quiz Competition, where schools can enter up to two teams per category -- and where there will be an extra round of questions based on supplementary material on one book in the category;
  • a Book Trailer competition;
  • a Design-a-Better-Book Cover competition;
The rubrics for the book trailer and the book cover contests are in the Google Doc linked above.

Register each of your teams here before 30th April.  The cost is $60 per team, to be paid on or before May 21. 

The categories are:
  • Younger Readers (6 students per team) - Year 3, 4 & 5 / Grade 2, 3 & 4
  • Older Readers (6 students per team) - Year 5, 6, 7 & 8 / Grade 4, 5, 6 & 7
  • Mature Readers (4 students per team) - Year 8+ / Grade 7+
Teams may be made up of students below the category range, but not above.

Remember: all information can be found on the Readers Cup page of the Red Dot website -- and will be reiterated at the AGM on Monday, April 27th, at Tanglin Trust School.

Questions?   Contact Barb Reid (, the chair of the Readers Cup Committee.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Update: Leisurely Lunch in the Library -- focusing on three kinds of Literacy - March 14th

Update on this Saturday afternoon's professional development opportunity at the UWCSEA East campus (12:30 - 3:00 in the Secondary Library -- after the TeachUp event).

This is the programme line-up:

1st Conversation:  Digital LiteracyResources for ethically locating, gathering, and using digital media, as well as standards, literacies and citizenship -- led by Kim Beeman (Head of Library - Shrewsbury International School, Bangkok) and Karen Blumberg (Tech Integrator - The School @ Columbia University)

2nd Conversation:  Literature Literacy: "In the Know" - tracking the latest best books - and - "Powerful Pairs" - connecting bundles of books for readers -- led by Katie Day (Head of Library - UWCSEA East) and Angie Erickson (UWCSEA Dover - MS Literacy Coach)

3rd Conversation:  Information Literacy: An overview of the inquiry programs and the sequential development of information literacy at the Australian International School (AIS) -- led by Linda Twitchett (Head of Library - AIS)

Feel free to invite your digital literacy coaches and literacy coaches....  or any other educator who may be interested.

Click here to register your interest in attending the Saturday afternoon librarian event:

Cost:  $10 for lunch (it will be a DeliFrance buffet, heavily subsidized by ISLN) (wine included!)

Sunday, March 1, 2015

A leisurely librarians' luncheon - with professional learning - Sat. March 14

You may have heard from your school PD person about TeachUp 2015 -- a new mini conference here in Singapore.  It's an initiative of the international school PD network and the event will rotate throughout the different schools.

UWC East in Tampines is hosting the first one.  It's on Saturday morning, March 14th, 9am-12pm, cheap (cost = $25), with a peer-to-peer format (teachers sharing with other teachers), in 25 min sessions. Please consider attending and/or presenting.

As it's at our campus, Barb Reid and I want to host a librarian PD event in the afternoon on the same day:  lunch and some whole-group professional conversations to be held in the secondary library -- from 12:30 - 3:00 pm

The ISLN Executive Committee is willing to be a partial sponsor, such that a nicely catered lunch complete with wine will cost our members just $10.
We're proposing 3 conversation-sessions: one focused on Information Literacy (inquiry, non-fiction, etc.), one on Literature/ Literacy (fiction, reading programs, etc.), and one on Digital Literacy (technology).

For example, Kim Beeman from Shrewsbury Int'l School in Bangkok (who just hosted the Librarians' Knowledge Sharing Workshop that we UWC librarians and Jo from GESS attended) is coming to Singapore for the March 14th TeachUp -- and plans to tour some of our school libraries on the Friday before.  Also visiting will be Karen Blumberg, the Tech Integrator at the laboratory school at Columbia Univ. in NYC.  So we have asked the two of them to lead the Digital Literacy conversation.

We have some ideas of other people for the other two conversations, but we will also be looking at the bank of possible professional development presentations by our members.

We know it's short notice, but we hope some of you will be able to come.  We only need to know numbers for catering purposes.  The costs are minimal and the format will work for 10 people as easily as 30 people.

Click here to register your interest in attending the Saturday afternoon librarian event:

Red Dot 20140-2015 Voting begins.... Ends on May 1

The voting begins today -- and will continue until May 1st.  

The winners will be announced Monday, May 4th.

Click here for the live voting form:

Please share the link with your students -- or send them to the Red Dot website:

NOTE:  In the past we have assigned codes to schools -- to help prevent random people from submitting votes -- but this year we just ask students for the name of their librarian on the form.  I think that provides enough of a check.

If you collect votes internally, here is a link to the Block Votes Submissions form -- JUST FOR LIBRARIANS -- to tell us how many votes per title in each category:

And here are some pictures of voting stations in different schools over the years:

Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Changes to the Red Dot voting and Readers Cup this year

This year voting for the Red Dot books is for 2 months, not one week.

The online form will be on the website -- -- starting from March 1st and closing on May 1st.

Remember: each school can collect votes in their own way.  You can direct your students to the Red Dot website - or create your own vote catchers.  You then report your results to me -- and I will email you back a total for your school, including any submitted online.  The overall winner for the whole network will be announced on the website and here.

Our search for the 2015-2016 Red Dot shortlist titles will begin much earlier.  The goal is to announce the lists in early June.  How to suggest titles (besides sending us an email!) will be explained in the near future.

There are even more changes happening on the Readers Cup front.  After last year's event, several of the participating librarians had extended conversations about how to improve it and make it more than just quick regurgitation of memorized information.

Consequently the Readers Cup Committee met in October 2015 with the express purpose of updating the format of the event in order to:
  • allow for a greater number of students to participate
  • promote higher level thinking/reading skills
  • promote creativity
  • allow students interaction across schools
  • have more winners
After much discussion it was agreed schools can enter up to TWO teams per category, rather than just ONE.

In terms of the quiz, besides short answers on key plot points and multiple choice questions, there will be:
  • kid generated questions
  • inferential/deeper meaning questions
  • questions based on supplementary information provided by the Committee 4 weeks before the competition (e.g.,  about the author, the country of the author, etc.)
 There will also be other ways to win -- in addition to the quiz portion:
  • Best Book Trailer - prepared and submitted by schools ahead of time, shown in between rounds. Each trailer no more than 1 minute long. Marked out of 10
  • Best Alternate Book Cover - prepared and submitted by schools ahead of time
Having a mixed team quiz is still under consideration, where students from different schools would be mixed together.

Watch this blog -- and the Red Dot website Readers Cup page (link here) -- for ongoing updates.

Contact Barb Reid, the chair of the Readers Cup committee, if you have questions about Readers Cup --

Contact Katie Day, the chair of the Red Dot committee, if you have questions about the Red Dot awards --

Sunday, February 1, 2015

Report back: Information Literacy Seminar 2015 at SMU, Jan. 29

Thursday, Jan 29 -- from 2:00 to 5:30pm -- Singapore Management University (SMU) hosted a seminar on information literacy entitled, We are teaching but are they learning?

ISLN was well represented, with Foo Soo Chin from the Singapore School of the Arts discussing "The art of thinking - in the brave new world of information literacy," followed by the Tanglin librarian team speaking about "Changing a culture: Academic honesty (acknowledging sources) in a 3-18 international school".

Four UWCSEA East & Dover librarians were in the audience to cheer them on, as well as Graham Grant from ISS and Yvonne Krishnan from SJI International.

The photo on the right shows the Tanglin (TTS) librarians receiving a thank-you gift from Gulchin Cribb, SMU head librarian.  On the left is Suzanne Parfitt.

It was quite unusual for the audience, mainly post-secondary Singapore librarians, to consider the implications of information literacy pushed down to such young levels as at TTS -- and they were charmed by the videos of Infant and Junior School students talking so confidently about referencing authors and titles.  The issue of the lack of librarians in Singapore schools was raised.

Several presenters opted for the rigorous Pecha Kucha presentation style, which forces you into speaking to 20 slides automatically timed to be displayed for just 20 seconds each.  I take my hat off to them -- they coped marvelously; I think I would still prefer to be in charge of the "next click."

Judith Peacock, the Learning and Study Support (LSS) Coordinator at Queensland University of Technology (QUT) Library, Brisbane, Australia, was a guest presenter -- and she finished off the afternoon of information literacy stories with these challenges for us:
  • Think more LEARNING, less teaching;
  • Think more CURRICULUM, less classes;
  • Think more OUTCOMES, less inputs;
  • Think more THEM (what do they the students need to know), not us (the teachers);
  • Think more US (the university and school), less we (the library);
  • Think more PROOF, less belief;
  • Think more SUPPORT LEARNING, less information literacy;
  • Think more STRATEGIC, less operational;
  • Think more DISRUPTIVE, less comfortable;
  • Think more POLITE BOLSHIE, less  yes-man;
  • Think more RULES, and THEN how to break them;
  • perceptions, attitudes, practices, roles, thinking, etc. 
After the seminar, there were tours for all interested.  I took a few photos.... 

UPDATE:  Here's a Storify of the event by one of the SMU librarians (@rockbrarian).

Report back: the iCreate Conference 2015 at SAS Fri Jan 23 - Sat Jan 24

The Singapore American School librarians hosted a next-generation version of their annual children's literature conference -- now called iCreate (#iCreate2015).  In addition to bringing in four award-winning authors/illustrators from the US, who each did keynotes and break-out sessions, they added extra speakers on the Friday evening and workshops on the Saturday afternoon, focusing on the creative process.

Here are links to the author/illustrators and their resources:
I would encourage you all to seek out Alvin -- he would be fantastic to put in front of students.  (If you want to buy his books, contact Books Actually.)

The conference, appropriately, challenged our own creativity, starting with the decorating of our nametags and the black blank notebooks they passed out.  (Though we were encouraged to swap notebooks partway through, I'm not sure anyone did.  I know I'm rather attached to my own style of note-taking, no matter how boring it is....)  I did try to up my game by signing up for Becky Green's doodling workshop on Saturday afternoon.  See all her rich resources at

As far as I could tell, Barb Reid and I were the only ISLN members at iCreate.  Such a shame, as it was a very fruitful weekend.  Look for signs of my increased creativity over the next few months!

Report back: Kevin Hennah's Cultural Weeding Workshop in KL, Jan 23, 2015

Kevin Hennah did a workshop on "Cultural Weeding" at ISKL in Malaysia
Friday, Jan 23.

Philip Moon, the high school librarian at OFS, attended and has kindly shared his report back to his principal with us.

Click here to read Philip Moon's report.

Three others from our network also attended:  Pam Males from UWCSEA Dover; Yvonne Krishnan from SJI International; and Marjorie Kennedy from the International Community School.

Friday, January 9, 2015

New Year update - looking back and forward

If you missed the Dec 10th talk at AISS by Prof. Scott Nicholson on gamification in libraries (see announcement here), then you can get a very good idea of what was covered, with links to all the resources Scott mentioned, on Nadine Bailey's blog -- read her summary here.  Many thanks, Nadine!

There are several great events coming up....

First, the iCreate Conference at Singapore American School -- Fri afternoon, Jan 23, and all day Saturday Jan 24.

Registration is open until January 16th, so you have another week to sign up to hear book creators Candace Fleming, Susan Campbell Bartoletti, Todd Parr, and Eric Rohmann, as well as Alvin Pang and Kim Gruia.

(By the way, have you read Candace's latest book, "The Family Romanov"?  Fantastic narrative history for teens. Garnered all kinds of awards.)

NB:  The regular conference price is S$150, but ISLN members get a discount -- just S$130.

Click here to read more about the authors/presenters at iCreate.

Then Feb. 5-6 in Bangkok there is the 3rd annual Librarian Knowledge Sharing Workshop, being hosted by Shrewsbury International School.  Cost: US$150.  Registration deadline is Jan. 26. The call for presentations is open right now -- so think about what you'd like to share with your regional colleagues -- or just come to absorb and interact.

Kim Beeman is bringing over the head of The Future for the Book Institute, Bob Stein, as he's a personal friend.  It's a blog/website I have followed for years, so I'm really looking forward to hearing him speak.

I'm also thrilled to announce my daughter Maggie Appleton will be doing visual note-taking of the presentations in Bangkok, as she did for the School Librarian Connection conference in HK in November (see her sketchnotes here).

The annual Words Go Round program, part of the Singapore Writers Festival, is coming up on March 2 - 14.  Bookings are open for you to have authors come to your school -- and the prices are incredibly reasonable.