Thursday, 25 March 2010

Young learners need librarians, not just Google

Want a quick justification for IL in schools and the importance of a librarian? Take a look at this little article by Mark Moran in Forbes.

He says "As a former executive officer at a company that had 1,200 employees in 29 countries worldwide, I know that without adequate media literacy training, kids will not succeed in a 21st-century workplace."


"In a recent study of fifth grade students in the Netherlands, most never questioned the credibility of a Web site, even though they had just completed a course on information literacy. When my company asked 300 school students how they searched, nearly half answered: "I type a question." When we asked how students knew if a site was credible, the most common answers were "if it sounds good" or "if it has the information I need." Equally dismal was their widespread failure to check a source’s date, author or citations."

He concludes :

"Before parents accept the wisdom of a school board to cut school librarians, they should ask: Will my child graduate with a 21st century resume, or a 19th century transcript? Can he use collaborative technology, such as wikis? When a search engine returns 105 million results, can the student find the five that will set her paper apart? With the Web evolving by the minute, can classroom teachers alone, stressed by assessment testing and ever-growing paperwork burdens, help students figure this all out? As the information landscape becomes ever more complex, why does a school district want to abandon its professional guides to it?"

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