Category Archives: I-brarian

Make it: Technobabble

The BBC has created a games site to allow children & teens to create their own games. It ties in with the CBBC show Technobabble.

It’s a starter kit. It requires no technical knowledge, no download and works just as well on mobile and tablets as desktop.

The only requirements are access to the web, a willingness to experiment and an idea. In minutes a child can create a game.

– Martin Wilson BBC head of digital creativity for future media

Make It: Technobabble Game Maker

Doctor Who: Friendly Dalek teaches you to code

The BBC has unveiled a computer game called The Doctor and the Dalek, as part of the Make it Digital initiative to get more young people into computer coding.

It is voiced by Peter Capaldi and the story, starring a friendly Dalek, is written by Doctor Who series writer Phil Ford.

YALSA’s Teen Book Finder

Find the best books and media for teens, as selected by library staff and educators across the United States! The Teen Book Finder, generously funded by a grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, offers easy access to the titles honored each year by the Young Adult Library Services Association, a division of the American Library Association. The Teen Book Finder allows users to search for books by title, author, genre, award, or list; create a reading list with the favorites button; share what you’re reading on Facebook and Twitter; and find a copy of the book in your local library, all from one screen! Not sure where to start? YALSA offers three different book titles as hot picks on the homepage each day.

For Android:

For Apple:

Improve your Grammar with Word Crimes

I think that this is the only good thing to come from Blurred Lines by Robin Thicke.

Word Crimes by “Weird Al” Yankovic is a brilliant parody of the above song and an excellent introduction to proper grammar.

I will be adding it to my pop culture educational arsenal for my students in September as there are a large number of them that treat grammar as an optional extra.

There is one instance of the term spastic at 3:10 into the song so if you do show this in class maybe stop it there or find some way of cutting that short segment out but it is near the end.

Stuff Mom Never Told You: The Literary Reign of YA Fiction

Visit the site for more information

The Perils of Using Wikipedia for Research

Student use of Wikipedia is a massive bugbear of mine.

Personally I love using it for general interest stuff and for idle moment reading. It is also good for presearch (the thing you do before settling down to do the work for an assignment).

The thing that really gets me is the fact that so many students seem to rely on it as the definitive and only source of information for homework and assignments.

Most public libraries offer Encyclopaedia Britannica or World Book Online as well as hundreds of other easy to use on-line reference sources (free with a library card).

Students mostly ignore other reference sources for the perceived ease of use that Wikipedia offers, regularly cutting and pasting entire blocks of text and passing the work off as their own.

Today on twitter I was a link to an article on how a vandalism edit can take on a life of its own.

How a Raccoon Became an Aardvark

The article tracks how the Wikipedia entry (edited in 2008) influenced articles written on the BBC news site as well as in the Telegraph the Telegraph article (written in 2010) was cited by Wikipedia as evidence that the term Brazilian aardvark is genuine.

It is interesting to note that as of today (20th May) the Wikipedia article has been amended to remove all reference to the “Brazilian aardvark”

wikiality(click on image for larger version)

I will be adding this to my talk on the perils of online information seeking and the importance of verifying information.

Future8 Awards

Dylan Collins’ latest start-up venture SuperAwesome has joined forces with The Guardian newspaper to launch the Future 8 awards, aimed at highlighting young digital creators from schools in Ireland and the UK.

The Future 8 Awards, which are supported by Enterprise Ireland, will invite youngsters ages 7-17 to compete in eight categories, including games, music, animation, maker (hardware and software combined), online video, mobile development, web development, and writing and blogging.

Find out more here:

UK ED Magazine with the top 100 UK Educational Blogs as voted for by UK readers

NEWS: Vote for your favourite UK Educational Blog

UKEdChat is running a poll to discover the most popular educational blogs in the UK.

Teen Librarian has been nominated and there are a ton of other excellent educational sites that you can discover. So take a look here:

Discover some excellent sites and cast your vote (if you are so inclined).

Let libraries lend ebooks