Sunday, June 29, 2008


I have just discovered Wordle and must admit that I could become very addicted to this!! Just like a tweet cloud but I chose to use as text my posts on my prac in Brisbane. What fun. Also great for making posters on library events and information, in fact for making Wordle clouds on almost anything and everything!

Had better get back to writing my assignment, see ya.


Originally uploaded by Werner Schnell

What can I say but THANK YOU to all staff at BSQ Library for allowing me to complete my prac with you all. I had the most marvelous time, and woke up each and every day so excited about what I would be learning.

As I spend the next few weeks completing my written report on my prac, I am going to use the time to really reflect on many of the things I observed at BSQ, in particular the notions of customer focus, customer service, the idea of roving reference vs the reality of it, user education, upselling, and some of your ideas on training. As my mind percolates on these matters, I will also be tossing into the equation the notion of Library 2.0 and looking at how it impacts upon these ideals and processes.

Just to say once more thank you so much for all the time you guys put into answering my many questions and for allowing me to constantly shadow your each and every move! I will miss you, and your workspace very much!! I do look forward to keeping in touch, and can't wait to hear how the new 23 Things training will be put into practice in your work environments, and actually seeing how you implement what you'll learn by creating an even better library service that has at its heart user participation! I am so jealous!!!!

Thank you, I will miss you all, and think of you often as I go back to my own Library.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Wonderful Week 2

neon glow
Originally uploaded by yinyang
Another great week of prac! I can honestly say that I wake up each morning so excited about going to the Brisbane Square Library and what I am going to learn about each day. I feel truly lucky to be there.

Many people have asked why BSQ? To see first hand the concept of roving reference, which I first heard about in a library tour in 2004. It has been really interesting observing the reality of this service compared to the concept.
Secondly the notion of a floating collection and the many libraries that operate under the banner of Brisbane city council libraries. Our recent council amalgamations have meant we now have 8 or 9 (can't remember) libraries that will need to operate as one, with a floating collection, one library management system and lots of staff that will need to communicate with each other and get to know one another without feeling threatened .
Also, to see in action the concept of all staff being able to perform all duties whilst on the library floor. This works really well, and I have loved watching this process flow. Obviously great staff training and education needs to take place for this to exist, but from a customer's point of view imagine talking to a well trained staff member who can meet their information needs, be it for reference information or general enquiries as to how things work.

I have learnt heaps this week and am so looking forward to my last week there. I think it will be very hard for me to go back to my own workplace!

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Brisbane Square Library

Brisbane Central Library
Originally uploaded by petaj
I can't believe that I have completed one whole week of my prac! Time does fly when you're having fun! I forgot my trusty camera this week but found this great photo on flickr to use. It really capture the sense of space quite well.

Where to start? Firstly the building! I just have to say that I haven't sneezed once! To those that know me at my current work, this must seem like a miracle!! I can only assume it has to do with the newness of the building and maybe the massive space the collection is housed across.

The staff basically work across all four levels of the library, from the workrooms in the basement, to self check out on the ground floor, to computers, learning lounges, meeting rooms, children's and young adults on the first floor to signing up customers, fiction, non fiction, reference and large print on the second floor. I am going to take my pedometer in next week and count my steps for a day!

The staff are great! I was worried that no one would talk to me, but they are all very friendly and willing to share freely of their knowledge. I have spent this week truly understanding the depth of this library service. I basically tagged alongside many different staff members, learning about their jobs as I observed what they were doing.

I feel very grown up and Brisbane city like as I wear my sand shoes and backpack to walk to work!! I try to walk along different streets every time so I can always be seeing new things.

And still my favourite part of the week is the online reference desk!! Very nerdy of me I know, but I just love hearing the sound of an incoming question, and the process of being able to provide access to information in a format that is current and relevant to those that are used to working/learning/communicating like this.

I still have sick kids so I'd better go. Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, June 8, 2008

One day down, 20 more to go!

Well, first day of prac is completed! I travelled down on the bus to Brisbane Square Library for the day on friday, where I spent the day generally learning about the library and its spaces and collections. Most importantly though, I was able to spend some time learning about the virtual reference service 'ask a Librarian'. After doing assignments on this area last year, I was very excited to see it in practice, and am hoping to be able to spend some serious time with the librarians who run this service.

I go back to Brisbane tomorrow, and will spend the next three weeks completing my prac. My high expectations have already been met, so here is hoping for a great rest of my prac!

On a quilting/stitching note, I received my japanese quilt back from Bev the incredible machine quilter! She stippled the quilt with gold thread, effectively tying in all the different japanese fabrics. I truly love it, and just love wrapping myself up in it on a cold night (as do the cat and dog and kids!)

You may notice a new chiclet on the sidebar of my blog. I am part of a Quilting Gallery of Bloggers from all around the world. A great site to spend hours reading quilting/stitching blogs from around the world!!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

Book Launch at the Toowoomba City Library

I attended a book launch of 'The Story of the Swamp' at the Toowoomba City Library today. It was written by Jane M. Smith, one of our Librarians, and edited by Jayne Fitzpatrick, another of our Librarians. The book is a children's history of Toowoomba, and was written with information supplied by Peter Cullen.

The launch was attended by members from the new Toowoomba Regional Council, staff, local historians, interested community members and the media. The book was officially launched by the new Mayor - Peter Taylor.

The above photos taken by Judy, are of the editor Jayne and writer Jane, then one of Jane, then of the actual launch of the book. The book covers a broad range of topics about Toowoomba and is aimed at primary school aged children.

The book is on sale now at the Toowoomba City Library for $6.00 and is a great read. Congratulations on a great job!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

3 more days until prac....

Well, semester 1 is finished and prac is nearly here! My first day is this friday, and then the following 3 weeks. I feel excited and scared at the same time, just like starting school again, wondering if I'll fit in, will I like it, will I know enough and will anyone talk to me? I am so looking forward to all the new learning I will be doing.

This past week or so has been full on, to say the least. Our car was in an accident (Dion is ok) but our car is out of action for 6 or so weeks as it gets fixed. My in-laws very graciously offered one of their cars for us to use, and this has been wonderful. Add a trip to the coast to pick the car up, two orthodontist appointments, a school disco, work and all of the other stuff that gets crammed into a week and you can get the picture!! Oh, and getting things ready at home so I can go away for prac!

On this note, I must say that the thing I will miss the most is my family and animals, the thing I will miss the least is making school lunches! May the experience be so joyous for my husband that he offers to do it for the rest of the kid's schooling!