Discovery students research with Alabama Virtual Library
Classes at Discovery pursue research strategies with the Alabama Virtual Library (AVL).
“Students have received instruction on how to use the virtual network, install printers, save to their U-drive and use the portal from home and from school,” Melissa ‘Missy’ Jenkins said.
Jenkins has worked as Discovery’s media specialist for six years. Debbie Harlow works as library aide.
Many Discovery teachers require research sources from the Alabama Virtual Library, a massive information source that can overwhelm some students, Jenkins said. They often need direction to databases offering the optimum benefits and features.
Available to all Alabamians, AVL offers groups of online databases with magazine, journal and newspaper articles (avl.lib.al.us).
Atriuum, an online card catalog, has replaced wooden drawers with printed cards. All library materials are cataloged in Atriuum and available to parents, teachers and students to search. After logging in to Atriuum, students can manage library records from any school or home computer.
Students who want to print from school must ‘install’ a school printer at each login. With the virtual network, each time they log in they get a different desktop.
“Each student has a personal U-drive to access from home and school,” Jenkins said. “When working on the virtual network, they must save (data) to their U-drive” during each work session. Otherwise, their work is lost.
“The portal is the gateway for students to access network files, Moodle, MediaCast and email … from school or home,” Jenkins said. Teachers can check out DVDs, audio books, book sets for literature circles and iPads. The library doesn’t own e-books.
“Our nonfiction collection needs updating,” Jenkins said about books needed for college- and career-ready standards, along with student interest.
Discovery is conducting a fundraiser, Bound-to-Stay-Bound Books, that allows individuals to purchase books on the school’s wish list or to donate money. To donate, visit sb.com/sosl/discoverymiddleschool1 before the fundraiser ends on Jan. 11.
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