Welcome back to Connect 2 U! In the past, we have run Connect 2 U as a time-limited program designed to encourage a few weeks of intense experimentation with new tech tools. Based on feedback from participants, as well as the need to train on new tech the patrons are asking about, we have redesigned the program to be an ongoing source of tech training. We hope spreading modules out over time will help you budget time to lighten the burden of tech training and balance it with your many other duties. If you have an idea for a module, you can either submit the idea to Karrie or ask about writing the module yourself. Participants who create modules will get to choose any Connect 2 U prize as a thank-you for putting in the extra time. Please note that we are offering a much wider variety of prizes this year.
Our first group of modules will focus on aspects of Windows 10. We will be upgrading the staff computers to Windows 10 soon, and these modules are designed to help ease your transition from Windows 7. The sooner you complete the modules, the more comfortable you are likely to be with the new operating system. After completing each module, please blog about the experience in order to receive a raffle ticket. Additional raffle tickets will be given for comments on each other’s blogs. We will have prize drawings monthly, and the winner can choose any Connect 2 U prize. The next set of modules will be released at the end of the summer, so please try to complete the Windows 10 modules before September. All librarians (except subs) are required to complete these modules. See your department head if you need help finding time to complete them. It’s highly recommended that all other staff members at least review the modules in order to prepare for our transition to Windows 10.
To get started with the Windows 10 modules, select “Windows 10” from the right menu on this page or “Windows 10 Overview” from the top menu. If you have already started the modules, select an item from the Windows 10 sub-menu.
*If you are using a staff laptop and experience issues connecting to Wi-Fi, right-click the Wi-Fi connection icon and select Troubleshoot. This should reset the adapter and connect the laptop to the network. If it does not work the first time, it should work with a second try.
This year, we are going to focus on using and troubleshooting our digital e-book, audiobook, and video collections available through OverDrive and Tumblebooks. Throughout the program, we will use different devices to access a variety of content. Like last year’s program, there will be several modules to be completed and blogged about by participants. I will make myself available for assistance as needed. Along the way, we’ll have incentives to help keep you motivated. At the end of the program, participants who have completed the required six modules will receive a gift card.
How It Works
We are trying a new program structure/schedule based on feedback from Connect 2 U 2013. Instead of posting weekly modules to be completed in a timely fashion, all 13 modules will be posted at the start of the program. Participants will have 12 weeks to complete six of the modules. Feel free to work at your own pace. Most modules will require a blog/intranet summary for credit, but the OverDrive Overview module has an associated quiz that must be taken to be considered completed. If you participated in Connect 2 U last year, you already have a blog you can use to post about the modules. If you do not have a blog (or prefer not to use it), you can write your post in Word (titled using the module name and your last name – such as “OverDrive Overview – McLellan”) and upload it the appropriate folder on the intranet (Connect 2 U 2014 library).
There are a few criteria for module selection:
- Everyone must complete the OverDrive Overview (module #1). No blog entry is required for this module, but there will be a quiz.
- Everyone must complete the OverDrive Streaming Video module (#2) on their device of choice.
- At least one chosen device must be an e-reader (black and white device including Sony Reader, Nook Simple Touch, and Kindle Keyboard).
- At least one chosen device must be a tablet/smartphone (color device including Nook Color, Kindle Fire, Android, iPad, and Microsoft Surface).
- Participants may use their own devices, especially if completing the OverDrive Computer module or OverDrive Audiobook module. However, at least two selected devices must be new to the participant. If you have already trained on all of the devices, please pick two with which you are less familiar.
All full-time librarians are required to complete the program. Part-time librarians and non-librarian staff are strongly encouraged to participate. There are prizes for every module you complete!
Head to the 2014 modules page to see a linked list of this year’s topics. Some are required, but you can complete them in any order. You may find it easier to start with the OverDrive Overview module, though.
To get credit for completing most modules, you must write a reaction to the module and post it to the Connect 2 U library on the intranet or your blog. Email Karrie to let her know to look for your response. Please note that you do not need to write a response to the “OverDrive Overview” module – just complete the quiz.
As you write about each module, consider the following questions as a guideline:
- How intuitive is the device in general?
- How intuitive is the download/streaming process?
- Did anything surprise you about the device?
- Did anything frustrate/annoy you about the device?
- Would you own or recommend this device to a patron? Why?
- Do you have any insights on how to best assist patrons with the method or device?
- Did you have any other questions or comments about the device or process?
Hello everyone and welcome to our final module on OverDrive! Overdrive is a popular service for libraries to use for downloading e-books and e-audiobooks. Luckily, it’s fairly simple to use for whichever device you are using – once you get past the set-up that is. Our module will take you through set-up and downloading in detail so you can help your patrons use this service after you’ve mastered it!
Have fun playing with e-books and e-audiobooks! You all are doing a fantastic job with our Connect2U program!!
Hello everyone! How’d you like Delicious and Evernote? I’ve been using Evernote a lot this week (on my iPhone) while I’ve been out and about but needed to jot something down. It’s been pretty handy!
Speaking of “out and about,” Week 7 will be on Portable Apps. Portable Apps is a handy service for users who are constantly away from their main computers or have specific programs they prefer to use. What’s more, it’s relatively easy to set up and you can take it anywhere!
I hope you enjoy working with Portable Apps this week. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us and we’ll do our best to help.
Hello East Greenbush Community Library and welcome to Week 6 of our Connect2U program! This week, we’ll be experimenting with Delicious and Evernote and how libraries are using these tools. Delicious is a bookmarking service that allows the users to save and share links of interest or of importance while Evernote is similar to an online notebook, where users can save articles, notes, and websites for future use. Both tools are becoming prominent instruments in libraries for saving and sharing information.
Have fun exploring Delicious and Evernote!
Congratulations! We are officially half-way through our program! I hope you all are having fun either learning (or reacquainting yourself) with the web tools we’ve experimented with so far. Did everyone enjoy the YouTube module? I’ve seen some awesome videos/slideshows posted on your blogs! Great job everyone!
Next we’ll be playing around with Dropbox. Dropbox is an incredibly useful service for sharing and accessing your documents from the internet – it is also a great collaboration tool when working with multiple people on one (or more) document(s).
Have fun exploring Dropbox and, if you have any questions, please comment or use the Contact Us page and we’ll be more than happy to help.
Congratulations on completing Week 3: Prezi and Jing! You are all doing a great job! I hope you’re having fun with Connect2U and you are enjoying experimenting and playing with various Web 2.0 tools.
We’re almost at the halfway point in our program as we move on to Week 4! This week we’ll play around with Youtube. YouTube is a popular service for video sharing and social networking but we will only be concentrating on browsing, creating, and uploading videos to this site. If you have any questions about YouTube (or any of the other tools we’ve played with so far), please contact us or comment on one of the pages.
Have fun exploring videos!
How did everyone like Google Reader? Are there any new favorite applications for following RSS feeds? Personally, I’ve been experimenting with feedly and I’m really enjoying it, especially on my iPhone! Even if you think you won’t be using RSS feeds after Connect2u is complete, it’s good experience to have and will come in handy when patrons or other librarians ask you questions regarding this tool.
We’ll be playing around with Prezi and Jing in Week 3 . Both Prezi and Jing are fun and helpful tools when creating presentations and sharing information. Have fun experimenting with these two services and don’t hesitate to ask us any questions regarding blogs, RSS feeds, Prezi, or Jing — we’re here to help!
For your convenience, we’ve removed the drop-down menu on the participant’s blog tab – you can still find all the blogs by clicking on the tab itself. The Connect 2 U team felt this would make browsing the blogs easier. Also, please remember to review and approve comments left on your blogs as this is how WordPress will display the comments.
We hope you’re enjoying playing around with Google Reader!
Congratulations on finishing the Blogging Module for Connect 2.U! If you’re still working on the first week’s module, don’t worry — relax and have fun with your blogs as they are an important part of the program. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to email us via our Contact page or to leave a comment on one of the pages.
Blogs are a great way to communicate with other librarians and libraries, as well as a great way to discover new technologies and methods. Week 2’s Module on Google Reader and RSS Feeds will give you experience in keeping track of your favorite blogs and other websites. Have fun exploring this great technology that creates a one-stop place for all your favorite blogs and any announcement you don’t want to miss!