When the KV Pattom Library Blog crosses 5,00000 Hits
When the blog in the story launched in September 2007, it was treated as an experiment with web 2.0 technologies. I was aware of the fizz that the blogs were causing in the area of common man’s journalism, the stories of people’s plights unearthed by courageous and at the same time unconventional bloggers. But, when blogging as a tool for the library, it means you take it seriously. At this juncture, when the blog crosses Five lakh (5,00000) hits, I would like to jot down
-the Blogging history of Library@Kendriya Vidyalaya Pattom–
- Launched in September 2007 ( The first experiment was with Blogger, but later fell in love with WordPress)
- Experimenting with WordPress (I think, wordpress is professional and at the same time more functional)
- Adding widgets, changing themes, uploading photos, linking videos (linking, hyper linking, more linking, …).
- Selected a three column theme which suited to add links on one of the side bar (because I needed a ‘web directory’ )
- Making pages and categories ( to publicise and promote library holdings and activities)
- Visited hundred’s of web sites to choose from for the evaluated subject-wise directory of links.
- The basic structure was made by November (burning midnight oils)
- The blog was introduced to the Principal (Dr. Cicy Roy Mathew has been very tech savvy, dynamic, supportive and open to new ideas).
- The blog is linked with the School website
- Official launching by then Education Officer, KVS, RO, Chennai Mr. D. Manivannan
- Experimentation continues
- The url was publicised as a web interface of the library
- Relevant contents and tags attracted more visitors.
- Linked to educational resources and materials to students and teachers.
- E-mail reference, Chat reference (Virtual reference) and Ask the Librarian services
- The success of this first school library blog generated interests in many quarters
- The library blog was introduced as a best practice at the Librarian’s In-service course in August 2008 at Mysore (many KV Libraries became blogging libraries from then)
- As an added service the E-magazine ‘Libzine’ launched in January 2008 with creative inputs from students and teachers (the blog received well)
- Homeworksonline was an innovative idea, where students are provided with their class homeworks online (termed as a best example of collaborative learning practice and adding technology in education successfully)
- To promote reading a blog ‘My Dear Book’ launched exclusively for publishing book reviews on library books by the students
- The Commissioner of KVS, Shri. Rang Lal Jamuda, IAS appreciated the project through an E-mail
- Malayala Manorama Daily, Asianet Television Channel, New Indian Express Daily and Club FM published or aired stories on the library in December- January 2008.
- The routine academic Inspection teams in their reports graded the library and its online activities highly and recommended that as a model to other KVs.
- Experimentation with new ideas continues
- The library started Facebook (social networking) and Twitter acconts and integrated that with the sites.
- E-mail and SMS subscription of updates started
- The library became a learning point to other school librarians (many librarians has been visiting the blog regularly and consulting with the librarians on many matters)
- The library blog was included in many National and International blog/site directories and chosen to the Hall of Fame, “Best School Library Webpages” (in the world section (only one from India) by Biblioteke, Norway.
- Assistant Commissioner, Education Officers and Principals those who attended the Regional Principals Conference at Thiruvananthapuram, in October 2009, visited the library (a small presentation was there on the project).
- The Commissioner of KVS, Shri. Rang Lal Jamuda, IAS , in a letter to Assistant Commissioners of 18 Regions of KVs asked to visit the library and school websites and suggested them to direct all KVs under their purview to follow that as an example.
- A paper was presented on the project in the International Conference of Academic Libraries (ICAL) 2009, held during 5-8 October 2009.
- Newsat2pm weekly published an article on the library on December 2009
- Now the blogs getting more than 1900 hits daily in an average from the country and abroad
- Receives more than 20 comments/queries per day
- Students, teachers, parents and library professionals visit the blog regularly
The blog set a trend in Indian School Library 2.0 and many consider this as a working model.
I think, the success of the project lies solely on innovation, experimentation, dedication and sheer hard work. And the support of the students, staff and Principal has been the force behind.