November 2015

Our Vision: Support and grow the Prince William County school library community.

President's Message from Beth Bowen

“I want to stand as close to the edge as I can without going over. Out on the edge you see all the kinds of things you can’t see from the center”. ~Kurt Vonnegut

What do you see on from the edge where you stand in your library? Are you attending the Virginia Association of School Librarians Conference this month? Read on for some great insight from PWSLA's own Carolyn Vibbert, VAASL President-Elect.

Calendar of Events

November 19-21 VAASL Conference in Williamsburg

see below for details

December 1, 4:30-5:45 Book Box Widget Workshop

Lisa Story and Carolyn Vibbert are hosting a workshop at Coles Elementary. Come learn how to use the Book Box Widget to display book covers on your school website or personal blogs.

December 3, 2015 PWSLA Happy Hour

The All American Steak House & Sports Theater
4179 Merchant Plaza
Woodbridge, VA 22192

RSVP 11/30/15 to Wanda Higgins

Wednesday December 9th
PWSLA Professional Development: Middle School Resources for Teaching ESOL
Stonewall Middle School 3:30-4:30
Contact Linda Mitchell @ for information and to rsvp.

March 12, 2016 VAASL Potomac Regional
Battlefield HS

Interview with VaASL President Elect Carolyn Vibbert

Not only is our Potomac Region fortunate to call our VAASL President-Elect, Carolyn Vibbert, our own....but so can PWSLA. Thank you Carolyn for answering some questions about what we can look forward to at Librarians On the Edge this month.

PWSLA: How is this year's conference different for you as president elect of VAASL?

CV: There are a few things that are different for me when looking at the conference through a global lens. The most significant change is transitioning from looking at the conference as an opportunity for my own professional growth to making sure all of our participants are fully engaged in content that will allow them to strengthen their practices for the benefit of patrons.

PWSLA: Describe the "EDGE" that Librarians are on. Is this a problem or an opportunity for us?

CV: I have been asked about the "edge" a LOT since designing the original theme. I'm not sure any answer I've given in person or in VAASL articles has been the same. I see it as an opportunity for those who are willing to take a risk. We must be willing to go beyond 'comfortable.' It's a problem when we don't.

PWSLA: What would you tell a first timer at this year's VAASL to make SURE they don't miss?

CV: Well, if you're a first-timer to the conference, then don't miss the First Timers' Breakfast on Thursday!! It's a good opportunity to meet the VAASL Executive Board, connect faces to names, and to ask questions about the organization. Beyond that, I will tell first timers to not miss the chance to think about the conference as being FOR your patrons.

PWSLA: Lots of Librarians are facing paying some or all of the expense of attending VAASL on their own. What is the bang for their buck that they get by attending Librarians on the Edge?

CV: As I alluded to, our communities often are not able to go to conferences--we must go for them. For every conference I go to, I take notes in a grid that tracks who my target is for an idea; what practices, information, or strategies will I share/use; how will I start the sharing/implementation process; and any extra notes about resources, materials or timeline. Only when we take the time to reflect and think about how we will implement what we learn will it be worth the funds we spend.

PWSLA: Personally, what's your favorite thing to do/attend at VAASL?

CV: I am a complete introvert and don't always go out of my way to make new friends, but my favorite thing to do at conferences is to talk to strangers in the hallway. You never know what you can learn when sharing a power outlet with someone! As for attending an event, I'm really looking forward to the President's Reception and Author Celebration on Thursday evening where we'll have over a dozen local authors signing books!

PWSLA: Make a book pairing for us......a book and a comfort food....go!

CV: Ah, a challenge! With the weather cooling down I immediately thought of one of my favorite books: Impossible by Nancy Werlin. To me, it feels just like a cup of hot chai tea on a wind-whipping day when it's time to be buried in a cozy chair with an afghan. Let me know if you need a copy to borrow--I always keep a spare on hand!

PWSLA: Thank you Carolyn for being a tremendous resource for our local chapter, region and entire state!

PWSLA at your Fingertips