IST Library and Information Literacy Center

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iPad initiative

September 15, 2014 by · 1 Comment · General Topics

This year, we are trialling the use of iPads throughout the school.  For the first session, students from Grades 1, 2 and 4 have been integrating iPads into their units of inquiry.

Grade 1′s have used iPads to photograph and video members of the community as part of their ‘Our School Community’ inquiry.  They have also integrated ‘Write and Play’ and ‘Phonics-1st’ into their daily literacy programme.

Grade 2 students have learned how to take photographs , find images connected with their ‘Healthy Choices’ unit from a safe search engine and upload their work to the app ‘Pearltrees’.  Last week students also used the apps ‘Eat-and-Move’ and ‘My yoga_free’ to explore the components of healthy living.

Grade 4 students have been using the iPads to complete pre-assessments and concept maps using the app, ‘Popplet’ and photographs they took around the school campus (see a screenshot below).  Students have also used the iPads for research using a pathfinder site called ‘Symbaloo’ and the Library OPAC.  For their final assessment students will choose from a variety of creation tools to share their knowledge and understanding of an invention of their choice, as part of their ‘Discoveries and Inventions’ unit of inquiry.

Grade 5 students have also used the iPads for research through the Library OPAC and to explore the app ‘EmPOWERed kids’ in relation to their ‘Electricity’ unit.

The iPads were launched in Secondary School last week and students explored the apps, ‘Keynote’, ‘Prezi’, ‘Bamboo Paper’ and ‘GarageBand’ in connection with their Personal Projects.

The photos in this post were edited using a great app called, ‘My Sketch’.  This app is $2.49 at the Appstore.  All other apps mentioned in this post, except for ‘Keynote’, are available for free from the Appstore.



Meet Your IST Library Staff for 2014-2015

August 13, 2014 by · Comments Off · 2014-2015, Elementary Topics, General Topics, Secondary Topics

Library Staff 2014-2015Left to right: Danny Hilleson, Elementary Teacher-Librarian; Lisa Fang, Assistant; Virginia Morgan, Secondary Teacher-Librarian; Jessica Yu, Assistant; Lizzy Wang, World Languages Teacher-Librarian.

We are very excited to help you with any reading or information needs!


Monday-Thursday 7:30-4:30 pm

Friday 7:30-3:30 pm

Parents are always welcome.

The IST Library & Information Literacy Center Welcomes You!

August 11, 2014 by · Comments Off · General Topics

“Petit t à petit, l’oiseau fait son nid.” This is a French proverb that literally translates to ”little by little, the bird makes its nest.”  I used it the other day to very accurately describe the movements of the five library staff members in these days preceding the arrival of students. The beginning of every year signals change in the library. We have new books, new materials, and a new Ipad program, and these all have to be organized and arranged. This year we also have a new staff member! Ms. Danny Hilleson is our elementary librarian. She too has been very busy “building her nest,” stepping into her role as teacher-librarian and the faculty blog administrator. But this French proverb has more depth to its meaning, and I interpret it as saying that any goal can be achieved through perseverance. The library staff is a hardworking bunch and willing to please. If you have any information or literacy needs, please come by and seek our help. You are always welcome.

Farewell from Mrs. Fitzgerald

June 13, 2014 by · 1 Comment · 2013-2014, General Topics

As I prepare to leave IST after 13 years, I keep coming back to our motto:

“Learning together, working together, acting together for our common future.”

I used to think that the important words in the motto were the verbs: learning, working, acting. I devoted my energies to helping students and teachers learn, work and act.  However, as I reflect on life after IST and especially as I speak to people that have already left, I’ve come to realize that the important word in the motto is actually the word together.

“Learning together, working together, acting together for our common future.”

Together we make IST a friendly place. Together we place the needs of our students first. Together we build community. And what a wonderful community it is. In fact, the IST community is the most important part of the IST experience, its very core.

All that is left to me is to extend a vote of gratitude and appreciation for the support and fellowship that the IST community has extended to me and to my family. We are so proud to have been members of the community for such a long time. Thank you again for building community with us. It’s been absolutely wonderful.

I can be reached via email at the address, fitziane at yahoo dot com. I also tweet on information literacy topics with the handle fitziane, and I am on Facebook.

Fare you well. I hope you all have a great summer, and that you spend it reading!

Thank you! Xie xie. ¡Gracias!

Library Used Book Sale at Community fair

June 11, 2014 by · Comments Off · General Topics

The Community Fair was another great event at IST! It is always great to see the community come together. We hope everyone had a super day.

The library’s used book stall sold 2610 RMB worth of books. That’s about 200 books who found new homes today, hurray.

Special thanks today to the Middle School Book club and to Agnes Tassy who helped to sell books. So good to have friends to help!

Leftover books will be donated to charities in China.


iPads in the Library

June 9, 2014 by · Comments Off · 2014-2015, Elementary Topics, General Topics, Ipads, Secondary Topics

Photo Credit: Laurie Sullivan via Compfight

If you are thinking of investing in some technology for an IST student this summer, you might consider buying an Apple product. Most IST staff members already use MacBooks. And this fall, the library will be introducing 40 Ipads into the library program: twenty for elementary classes and 20 for secondary classes. The IST Science department is leading this initiative with an additional 20 Ipads loaded with science software. Students will be using these Ipads to collaborate and create in a transformed learning environment. The Ipads will be loaded with a variety of apps. Below please find some of the apps that will be used throughout the school.




Mobile App Available


Microsoft Office (Word, Powerpoint, Excel)




Microsoft Office is an office suite of desktop applications.  It comprises Powerpoint, a presentation program, the word processing and desktop publishing application Word and the spreadsheet application, Excel.

iWorks (Pages, Keynote, Numbers)









iWork is an office suite of applications created by Apple. It comprises Keynote, a presentation program, the word processing and desktop publishing application Pages and the spreadsheet application, Numbers.

Collaboration online


Safari or Chrome browser





ManageBac is designed for students in the MYP and DP.  Students upload  


Safari or Chrome browser



Dropbox is cloud storage that can be accessed from any computer or mobile device.


Safari or Chrome browser



Evernote is a tool that provides students a way to organize and save their ideas.  In Evernote students can take notes, snap photos, create to-do list, record voice reminders—and it makes everything searchable.





This tool is used for marking up pdf’s and images.





Flipboard allows teachers and students to collaborate and make class magazines. 


Safari or Chrome browser



Turnitin’s OriginalityCheck helps a student avoid plagiarism by checking your writing for citation mistakes or inappropriate copying.  When you submit your paper, Turnitin compares it to text in its massive database of student work, websites, books, articles, etc. With the online grading feature, teachers can edit and grade student papers online.




This App will allow students and teachers to create their own podcast.  Also, courses could subscribe to free audio and video podcasts.


Mac (10.9)


ebook and PDF reader

Kindle Reader




ebook and PDF reader

iBooks Author



This software allows students to create stunning interactive books.  Students start with one of the Apple designed templates that feature a wide variety of page layouts.  Students can add their own text and images with drag-and-drop ease.  Also students can use multi-touch widgets to include interactive photo galleries, movies, Keynote presentations, 3D objects, and more.  Once finished the iBooks can be published and shared.

iTunes U

* part of iTunes



iTunes U provides an easy way for faculty to organize and distribute digital materials to IST students. iTunes U allows for the following materials to be distributed in a course; video (mp4, m4v, mov), audio (mp3, m4a), documents (pdfs, iWork, Microsoft Office), eBooks (iBooks, ePub), iTunes apps, photos (jpg, png), iTunes store materials, and web links.





This app provides access to presentations by some of the world’s most fascinating people: education.  More than 2,000+ TEDTALKS that cover a wide range of topics.

Explain Everything




Explain Everything is an easy-to-use design, screencasting, and interactive whiteboard tool that lets the students annotate, animate, narrate, import, and export almost anything to and from almost anywhere.

iCloud Drive


*available fall 2014

Safari or Chrome browser


iCloud Drive, you can safely store all your presentations, spreadsheets, PDFs, images, and any other kind of document in iCloud and access them from your iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, Mac, or PC.

Summer Checkout Starts 9 June

June 8, 2014 by · Comments Off · 2013-2014, General Topics

Keep reading during the summer!

IST students who have returned all their library materials can check out books for summer reading. Many have already saved books and will be able to pick up Monday morning. Elementary students will need a signed permission slip.

Girls saving books for summer reading


Summer Reading – Summer Listening

June 5, 2014 by · Comments Off · 2013-2014, General Topics

Don’t let your English get rusty over the summer holiday!

While you are running, hiking, or just gazing at the stars, listen to some Young Adult literature.

Free Audiobooks from Sync

Free audiobooks!

Free audiobooks!


SYNC is a program that gives away two complete audiobook downloads–a current Young Adult title paired thematically with a Classic title–each week to listeners ages 13+. Click here for the titles and schedule.

Titles are delivered through the OverDrive Media Console.  This software can be downloaded onto desktops, laptops, or even as an app on your phone.

Not all titles are available overseas, but the majority are.


SYNC audiobook titles are given away in thematic pairs. Young Adult focused titles are partnered with classics, required reading titles and other thematically appropriate Young Adult tiles to encourage literacy and listening in young people.


SYNC is sponsored by AudioFile Magazine and titles are delivered through OverDrive Media Console.


Simply install OverDrive, Sign up for alerts, and remember each week to download the two titles.
• Downloads are in MP3 format, hosted by OverDrive, and are Mac and Windows compatible.

• Downloads will operate through OverDrive’s Media Console.

• Most listening devices are supported.

• Each SYNC audiobook will be available for download for a period of 7 days (only)

• Titles, once downloaded, are yours to keep.




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Top Ten Fiction Books in 2014

June 4, 2014 by · 2 Comments · 2013-2014, General Topics, Secondary Topics

Here are the top ten fiction books checked out in the 2013-2014. Which one was your favorite? Which one would you like to read next? Let us know in the comments.

Cover for Divergent


10. Divergent, by Veronica Roth

Cover for Sapphire Blue

F GIE (Also available in French, German, and on the Kindles)

9. Sapphire Blue, by Kerstin Gier


Cover for The Horse Road


8. Horse Road, by Troon Harrison

Cover for Diary of the Wimpy Kid


7. Diary of the Wimpy Kid: The Third Wheel, by Jeff Kinney

Cover for The Kingdom of Fantasy


6. The Kingdom of Fantasy, by Geronimo Stilton

Cover for The Hunger Games


5. The Hunger Games, by Suzanne Collins

Cover for Hero on a Bicycle


4. Hero on a Bicycle, by Shirley Hughes

Cover for Wonder


3. Wonder, by R.J. Palacios

Cover for Ungifted


2. Ungifted, by Gordon Korman

Cover for Ruby Red


1. Ruby Red, by Kerstin Gier

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Top Ten Picture Books in 2014

June 3, 2014 by · Comments Off · 2013-2014, Elementary Topics, General Topics

Here are the most checked out picture and elementary fiction books of the 2013-2014 year.  Notice that 5 of the books are from the 2014 Panda Books Awards shortlists and a Panda Book from 2013 still features on the list.

Cover for Shoo Fly Guy


10. Shoo Fly, by Tedd Arnold. 

Cover for Creepy Carrots


9. Creepy Carrots, by Aaron Reynolds and Peter Brown (Panda Book for Younger Readers 2014 winner)

Cover for Creepy Carrots


8. Ganesha’s Sweet Tooth, by Sanjay Patel (Panda Book for Younger Readers 2014 shortlist)

Cover for I Spy Fly Guy


7. I Spy Fly Guy, by Tedd Arnold

Cover for The Fantastic Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore


6. Nightime Ninja, by Barbara Da Costa and Ed Young (Panda Book for Younger Readers 2014 shortlist)


Cover for The Fantastic Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore


5. The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore, by William Joyce (Panda Book for Younger Readers 2014 shortlist)

Cover for Benjamin Bear


4. Benjamin Bear in Fuzzy Thinking, by Phillipe Coudray (Panda Book for Younger Readers winner 2013)

Cover for Mister I


3. Mister I, by Lewis Trondheim

Cover for Timmy Failure


2. Timmy Failure: Mistake Were Made, by Stephan Pastis (Panda Book for Older Readers winner 2014)

Cover for Pete the Cat


1. Pete the Cat and his Four Groovy Buttons, by Eric Litwin and James Dean (Panda Book for Younger Readers 2014 shortlist)

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