Pen’s TL Blog

Journey to the Centre of Teacher Librarianship

Ready to launch again February 18, 2011

It’s time to reinvigorate my blog as I embark on a new subject in my masters degree, ETL503, Resourcing the Curriculum. This subject is all about the management of library collections: the selection, organisation and deselection of library materials and how best to meet the needs of the library users. The area I’m most curious about is digital collection management – how do you store, catalogue and provide access to digital materials such as websites, especially when they are such rapidly evolving things?

I have mixed feelings about resuming the course, after a semester off. I’m curious and enthusiastic, on the one hand, definitely refreshed by the break. I’m also nervous and fearful, having found the subjects thus far extremely challenging. I’ve received marks in the 50s. Ouch. As I’ve pursued this course, I’ve had to accept the fact that I’m not being very good at, well, hard work! That gives the wrong impression, but I don’t know how else to put it. I was always a bright child to whom things came easily, and I’ve been reading recently how such children are at risk of not developing a habit of persisting with challenges. Tamara Fisher (2008), gifted education specialist, puts it like this: “A lot of gifted students get used to getting everything “right” the first or second, sometimes third time that they try it. Many of them, frankly, skate through school. They develop a myth in their own minds that they should always be able to do anything the first or second, sometimes third time that they try it. Yet we as adults know that Life has a different plan for them in that regard. At some point (hopefully sooner rather than later), learning will get more difficult.” For me, the skating has continued till this masters degree, and now, with a hideous crrrraaaack, I’ve fallen through the ice and the water is COLD. I have been repeatedly tempted to quit, but fortunately my stubborn nature and pride are an even match for my fear of failure, so here I am, ready to launch again.


Fisher, T. (2008). Chase the challenge in Unwrapping the gifted. Retrieved February 18, 2011 from


5 Responses to “Ready to launch again”

  1. ilkatampke Says:

    Very good, Penny. Something for us all to think about.

  2. davidporteus Says:

    Gosh, references! I think a lot of kids now expect to accomplish at first or second attempt, they want to be good at everything, only now there is so much to be good at. I guess that’s why schools are focusing on resilience but I also think it is important to accept mediocrity in some areas.

  3. penszen Says:

    I know, Dave, references! This course must be doing something – it seems I am becoming a hard core librarian type who can’t mention something casually without feeling compelled to quote the source. God forbid I should plagiarise.

  4. nicolekristen Says:

    That’s a really great post Penny and I really agree with what you have written!! I reckon it’s something I almost could have written myself 🙂

    • penszen Says:

      Thanks Nicole. What have been the challenges that have made you squirm? Classic example for me: started 3 unit English at school, got 12/20 for my first essay and thought, “Well, I obviously can’t do this” and dropped the subject. Persistence is not my middle name!

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