• What do you think are the key aspects of Web 2.0 that are likely to impact on education in today’s schools? 

Web 2.0 has transformed the WWW into a much more powerful teaching and learning resource, from Web 1.0 which is basically a read only information resource to a read/write resource.  Web 2.0 tools facilitate easy communication, collaboration, creation of new information and knowledge. Students are no longer passive consumers of information but are active creators of information.

  • What are the opportunities here for teacher librarians?

Web 2.0 tools like wikis and blogs are excellent communication, instructional, collaboration and library resource promotional tools for engaging learners. Pathfinders in text and visual formats can easily be created using Web 2.0 tools to facilitate targeted information search.

  • Can teacher librarians afford to ignore Web 2.0 tools?

Teachers and teacher librarians who are in the business of educating our youth can ill afford to ignore Web 2.0 tools as they can be effective teaching and learning tools if properly harnessed. More importantly, we need to connect and engage our google generation of learners savvy in ICT (smartphones, iPads etc) and web 2.0 tools. Unless we are able to engage our students meaningfully in their ‘turf’, we may find teaching the digital natives more and more challenging. As such, teachers and teacher librarians need to quickly learn new digital skills and knowledge in order to bridge gap. The urgency of the matter was aptly captured by Will Richardson in his 31Aug 2011 blog entry (http://willrichardson.com/) where he shared that “teachers needing to be learners first, needing to be the learning experts in our communities, not just the subject matter experts”. His sentiment is aptly encapsulated in a quote by Eric Hoffer, “In times of change, learners inherit the earth, while the learned find themselves beautifully equipped to deal with a world that no longer exists”. To remain relevant and effective in our profession, we have no choice but to continue learning new skills and to learn fast.