We’re delighted to welcome Karina Quilantan as a guest writer on our blog! Karina, also known as “Q.”, is a middle school library media specialist from the Rio Grande Valley, Texas. She has been an educator for over a decade and has earned array of digital credentials such as Apple, Google, and Microsoft Educator certifications – not forgetting her status as Mote Ambassador! Karina’s love for educational technology has allowed her to expand her library programming beyond the classroom and she loves finding innovative ways to keep her students and staff engaged in the learning process.
Library media specialists hold a unique position in their learning communities. They prepare lessons that foster academic growth, provide equitable access to resources, develop effective training opportunities for teachers, and take on additional responsibilities that fall outside of their professional duties. The global pandemic forced us to make enormous strides toward educational improvement and leverage technology effectively, and efficiently, to meet the needs of students learning from home.
However, with more schools opting to return in-person for the 2021-2022 school year, brainstorming how to successfully utilize the technology that we learned during stay-at-home orders has now presented us with the question of how to effectively blend the best of both worlds.
Using Mote in my library not only solidified our library’s communication practices, but it gave our library community a voice in places where it was often on mute.
I often used Mote to provide my students with recorded feedback, reader’s advisory, and tech support within our learning management system (ex: Google Classroom), but returning to the library in-person gave me an opportunity to determine how to adapt Mote’s digital functions and apply them in a physical environment. If you are a Mote fan, or new to the platform, and would like some ideas on how to incorporate its amazing features into your library, check out these ideas my campus library crafted for our learners.
Welcome to the Library!
It’s the beginning of the year and you will more than likely be behind plexiglass. If you are a librarian who participates in yearly “Open House” or “Meet the Teacher” nights, record a Mote that you can link to your digital or printed library services fliers, brochures, bookmarks, or “About the Librarian” signs to maximize your impact and promote your library services.
Toilet Talk – Learning When You Gotta Go!
Who says learning always has to be so serious? I put a spin on “Toilet PD” which I learned from Kasey Bell (Shake Up Learning). I now use Mote to create funny professional development opportunities called “Toilet Talk” for my staff. Information includes quick tech tips, or facts, and audio that spans no longer than a minute. This provides a great microlearning experience all from the comfort of the library’s throne.
Hours behind a screen can take on an enormous toll. Consider being a cheerleader for your staff! You would be surprised how a sweet Mote can make a teacher or staff member’s day. Record a short message on Motepad for “Mote-ivational Monday”. You can easily copy and email the link to your recipients or create a small card with a QR code linked to the Mote and hang it on their classroom doors. I guarantee they will love it.
Add an element of surprise to your shelf-talkers by including your actual voice! Shelf-talkers usually include a recommended title, an image of the book cover, and a short summary. Imagine expanding your message by not only creating a shelf-talker template on your favorite content creation tool, but also adding a QR code that’s directly linked to your Mote recording. You can also follow this same procedure when creating bookmarks. This not only adds some sparkle to your shelves, but it is a wonderfully efficient way to provide your patrons with recommended titles to add to their to-be-read pile.
Respectfully, Your Library
You have done and learned so much and now it’s time to tell the entire world! Record a message on Motepad detailing your contact information or a quick bio about yourself and add the link to your email, website, or digital newsletter signatures. This makes your contact information personable and gives your recipient an opportunity to meet you beyond the text.
Additionally, you can spend less time writing out an email by using the Mote function available on Gmail. This is a wonderful way to engage with your recipients!
Every library is different and adapting to the needs of your learning communities comes with great responsibility. Consider these ideas as a starting point as you continue on your Mote journey. Refine, adapt, and amplify your library’s message one voice note at a time
Many thanks to Karina for this fantastic post! If you’d like to write a guest blog, please reach out through our social channels. Thank you!