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A preview of writings for the Fall 2013 semester (supervising while ill, remote training, and introducing new procedures to staff)

Hello everyone! 

That past few weeks I have been trying to think about what exactly I was going to write about. I have a couple of posts in my queue but I thought that I would outline things a little here to…well… lessen any surprise or confusion later. 

At the end of the Spring I was told that I was in poor health and that  I would need to make time off work intermittently for my treatments. What does this mean and why am I even telling you this? Well, changes in my health will change the way that I work and supervise. So a few of my posts about my experience as a supervisor will likely talk about working while going through treatments for a chronic illness. I can already tell you that I have had an interesting time searching for articles about supervising while working through illness. Honestly, I never thought that I would have to even think about something like this, let alone this early in my career. So, I will share a bit of my experience from time to time, in case any one else is also looking for similar information as I am. 

Since I will likely take off more time than I had in the past I plan on writing about doing remote training with students employees and full time library support staff. This will be very interesting especially when you consider the fact that I just recently got some of my staff to actually respond be via email. But I have created a Google site for circulation staff. This site has helpful information such as day to day procedures, as well as helpful websites, commonly needed phone numbers and and shared calendars for desk schedules, student employee schedules and staff time off calendar which I update after I approve time-off requests. A lot of the procedures will have to get updated but it is a start! Who knows what other remote staff training I might have to get into.

Before all of this gets started my library is moving back into it’s permanent location. At the beginning of the summer our books were placed in temporary storage and the staff worked as part of another library on campus. Now that we get to return to our library we have to get used to negotiating around a different type of space. For the first time (as I understand) in at least 6 years the staff will have  a desk schedule! So it will be very interesting to see how things go.

I think that this will be an interesting semester. If anyone has any tips for me, as usual, please do so! 

Student Training: Completed Cards call number cards (round one)

So I finally did my first set of call number practice cards. I decided to use Uno cards because I could organize the the cards by color (for the call number class/subclass line) and numeric value (for the classification number and cutters). Because Uno cards only have 4 colors and card value range of 0 - 9 I was pretty limited in how many call number practice cards that I could make. BUT So far my supervisor and a couple of other library staff have had fun testing the cards out.

So to make the cards I started out with some mailer labels and and a deck of uno cards.The first step was to print out call numbers on the mailing labels and then place the labels on the Uno cards…yes… very complex. The most important part is to make sure that the call numbers are placed on the correct cards! 

Because I work in a business school library most of the books are in the “H” class. Which you would think makes it easy to read the call numbers, but I usually find that it can make you dizzy when shelf reading. So first I organized the cards for class. What better way to organize by color than to use rainbow as a model. Remember RYGBV? 

HB = Red    HD = Yellow   HF = Green   HG = Blue. There are a lof of other call numbers that the library holds, but I thought that this would be a good range for this exercise. 

Once the call number class and card color issue was figured out then I had to find some tricky call numbers. So, the students will have to organize  the cards with the same class by ascending cutter numbers. 

In the end the student employee (or co-working looking to bone up on call number reading) will receive a small set of shuffled cards with the call number facing up. Then they organize the the cards and to check their skills. YAY! I am so happy that I finally did this. Next step is to laminate these darn things.

If you have tried something similar please let me know how it has worked for you? Any tips? 

Update to Student Employee Training Post

Update:

Huzzah! They use BlackBoard at my job and right now I am not all to impressed with the looks of it. I am pretty lame and often times have negative reactions to sites and web tools that I don’t find pretty (it’s bad. I know) so I will probably do a draft/outline in a different system. I might try Jot. Thank you Google for stepping up your survey game!

 A little more low-tech but very good is something that I learned while at ACRL 2013. I will use a deck of playing cards to help make call number flashcards. Basically you glue call numbers on the back side of the card. In order so that when you want to check to see if you placed your call numbers in the right order the cards will also be in the correct order. I am sure that this doesn’t make too much sense so I will post pictures later. 

First official cat post

So I got my library degree and all of a sudden I am posting cat videos and cat pictures on my Facebook. Horrible! Really it is! But I feel like it’s ok because none of the photos and videos that I likes are highlighting how “cute” cats are. For the most part I like how absurd they are. Cats have so much…. dignity(?)….but they are just as silly as dogs. I mean have you ever caught a cat grooming themselves when they think no one is looking? No? Well just imagine your mom walking in on you in the bathroom as you take care of your own body hair. Yeah, exactly.  

This video is a hoot! I am sure that  I am the last one to post this but here we go anyway.

Confession

So here it is. I am studying to be a librarian. I work in a library. I wear glasses and frequently complain about search functions on various websites. But I do not like cats. I am allergic and even if I wasn’t I think that I might lie and say I was just to avoid cat sitting. I think that cats are jerks and are like roommates who don’t pay rent or do dishes. I think most look the same and when people show me pictures of their cat doing something “cute” I think that the cat usually just looks pissed off.  Oh, and for the most part I don’t understand those cat memes. So, next time you run into a librarian don’t just assume they like cats. Because they might be like me. A dog lover!

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