ETL504 Blog on Communication


You have developed a new digital literacy program that you believe needs to be used across across the school.  How will you communicate this program to your staff ?


Throughout this teacher librarianship course I have been introduced to online pathfinders and how they can be used to guide students in the information search process. An pathfinder guides the students on a research path using online resources aswell as print sources carefully selected by the teacher librarian. Through learning how to create a pathfinder I have realised the importance of search strategies and search engines to locate resources suited to children and the chosen topic. Quality questioning is also extremely important to get students started on their research path. Questions give the students direction and a purpose. It is vital to include steps in the Information Search Process on each page of the pathfinder to link ideas together and continue to give the student direction.


To implement pathfinders in classroom teaching and learning programs it is essential that the teacher librarian provides staff with ongoing professional development opportunities to be empowered with new knowledge. Teachers need to understand the deep knowledge and educational value of using pathfinders and feel inspired and empowered to use them in their own classrooms.


Steps in Process : How to Communicate and Empower Staff

  • Professional development on the importance of the Information Search Process. Refer to the already introduced NSW ISP model and explain the benefits of independent student research and the benefits of using a model. Redefine steps in the research process. Link to General Capabilities in the new Australian Curriculum.

  • Professional development on ‘What is a Pathfinder?’ Hands-on professional development opportunities in school computer lab. Teachers view ready made online pathfinders. Link pathfinders with upcoming units of work for school context.

  • Professional development: Staff meeting where library success stories are shared. Teacher librarian and classroom teachers share stories about the benefits of their class using pathfinders as a way to guide research. Discuss features of good and bad pathfinders.

  • Professional Development: Creating a pathfinder. Using the library interactive whiteboard the teacher librarian demonstrates how to create a pathfinder.

  • Professional development: Teachers creating online pathfinders in lab during staff meeting.

  • Sharing of pathfinders created.


About lindalibrariansmith

“The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.” ― Plutarch
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