Hello, friends! Check out the guest blog post I contributed to the Library Learners page moderated by Cari White. Make sure to follow her on social media by following Library Learners on Facebook! This blog post goes a little more in-depth about video game tournaments in the library. In the post I do make reference to a Wakelet collection of resources, setting up the tournament on the Switch, and differences in pro-controllers. Check it out by clicking on the image below.
Hello, library friends! Cue the Librarian here to report on the BEST event my library has hosted since I've returned! These past two months have been crazy busy, but with testing season looming around the corner, I had to give my students a chance to let loose and enjoy being kids. Which is why, for the second year in a row, my library ambassadors and I organized our annual eSports Tournament! The first year we hosted, we played Marvel vs. Capcom on Xbox, but due to the Nintendo Switch and tournament capabilities, we figured it would be better to play Super Smash Bros Ultimate. We began with making announcements, posting fliers on our library's Instagram page (@libraryjems), signed up students using a Google Form with basic questions such as name, grade, and whether they had their own controllers. Once the day arrived for the actual tournament, the students were briefed on the tournament rules, set up their controllers and added themselves to the tournament brackets. I had a student who was super fluent in Smash tourneys that I decided to give him the title of Smash Game Warden. If you'd like to see how the event turned out, check out my library's newsletter https://www.smore.com/v5u4w.
Where to Begin?
A fellow librarian reached out to me and asked for best practices. So with that in mind, I would suggest the following--
1. Seek out student gamers! Their abundance of knowledge is really an asset! They WILL lead the way and it's a great opportunity to create a culture of ownership and pride in their library.
2. Choose a console and game. Super Smash Bros Ultimate tournaments on the Nintendo Switch seem to be the most popular because of the tournament and character options. I used my own console, but you if you don't have one I'm sure a student wouldn't mind offering theirs for the tournament.
3. Set rules for sportsmanship and game play. Trust me when I say the kids will have a lot of input on this because they not only live and breathe video games, but they're experienced enough that they can foresee potential problems that I would have overlooked otherwise.
4. Make sure you have a Nintendo Switch dock, HDMI cables, and extra controllers. Students often bring their own. I would suggest that you have them enter their names in the tournament brackets a couple of days before the actual competition to save you a lot of time during your event.
5. Let the kids LEAD THE WAY! My students had a great time leading this event and I loved the amount of collaboration and teamwork all of this involved. They are true 21st century leaders!
Get in the spirit!
Of course, this event would not have been complete without some personal flair. I have a huge monitor in the back of my circulation desk. Since we were going to use that specific screen I wanted to do something a little out of the ordinary. To bring attention to this event, and to stir up some buzz about the library, my husband and I made this AWESOME screen into an enormous Nintendo Switch! I used two cardboard trifolds, measured the length of the sides of the screen to size, spray painted them in "Switch colors", cut the "buttons" using foam sheets using my Cricut machine (about 2 inches in diameter), used the tops of two Casper Pillows containers that I had in the garage to create a 3D joysticks effect, and assembled everything with my trusty hot glue gun! Overall, it turned out pretty well and the kids were REALLY surprised to see it when they visited the library. Students even stopped by to see what the buzz was all about!
If gaming tournaments are something you want to try out, I highly recommend you do! Don't feel overwhelmed, just have fun with it. Start small by starting a club and then work with your gamers to come up with a game plan. Literally. If you need any help as far as ideas or tips you can always drop me a line on social media! And if you are hosting one soon--let me know! I'd LOVE to see how you run your event!
Until next time, gaming librarians!
Happy New Year, friends! 2019 flew by so fast I feel like I'm still catching my breath. Let's raise a glass to new beginnings! I'm making it a point to stick to documenting my reading journey on Goodreads. I've even joined the 2020 Reading Challenge and set a realistic goal of 50 books this year. It seems that January is synonymous with the word "resolutions" and reevaluating our habits to make room for personal growth. As a librarian, I like to refer to my yearly reading goals as "readolutions". This is something I love to share with my students. One of my favorite lessons at the beginning of a new semester is brainstorming what makes a good reader, making lists of what kind of reading resolutions are attainable, and deciding on what readolution is best for us. Students then create a visual of their readolutions using Buncee. We then add everyone's individual creations to a "vision board" and share with the class. The lesson example is below.
My goal for this month is to make their projects into an interactive bulletin board using Buncee's QR code feature. Feel free to make a copy of the lesson if you'd like to spark a discussion with your readers about the importance of reading for pleasure and setting attainable goals. You can also use the free bookmarks I have listed at the end of the post if you'd like them to jot down their ideas first. I also use these to write down books people recommend or quotes or words that resonate with me while I'm reading. If you happen to create your own readolution Buncee share it with me on Twitter by tagging me @cuethelibrarian. Until then, I wish every single one of you a wonderful New Year and hope it is filled with many opportunities and blessings!
What's your #OneWord for 2020? I am looking forward to discovering new ways on how to become a better educator, a reader, and a healthier/mindful person. I am ecstatic with anticipation for what 2020 and the new decade has in store for education, libraries, and technology.
I love December so much!!! It's a month that I cherish because it's a wonderful time to share what brings us together as family, friends, and as a community. My dad and sister both have birthdays this month and it's always fun to gather at our ranch and share funny stories and eat cake. What's a party without cake, amiright? Not to mention the fun time I have Pinteresting holiday dessert and drink recipes and text messaging them to my mom so we can come up with our annual Christmas menu. The presents are fun too, but above all it's the moments I get to spend with my family that I look forward to the most. It's also a great opportunity to meet up with friends who I don't get to see often. One of my FAVORITE things to do during the month of December is the holiday romance book swap that Lispy Librarian (check out her vlog lispylibrarian.weebly.com!) and I do every year!! It's become our annual tradition and it's been SO FUN reading a book together and then pouring out our emotions. I highly suggest you do the same with a friend, or group of friends, because it's such a cute thing to share with people that you love. This is our third year doing this so we've only read two, but this year's is a modern take on Pride and Prejudice which paired nicely with last year's because it was a modern twist on A Christmas Carol. Below are the books we've read/are currently reading--
I can't wait to get through this year's novel and share all my emotions on my blog and Twitter. I'll be adding a review of the book to my digital bookshelf Wakelet collection "Cue's Book Queue" that you can find by clicking here. And in case you need something to help you keep your place in all the amazing books you'll be reading this season, feel free to download some of my free December bookmarks! I wish every single one of you the best this holiday season and an even better NEW YEAR! See you in 2020!